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If you have an ingrowing nail, we can help.

Efficient. Effective. Affordable. Painless (almost...)

Bandaged toe

What is the process for getting an ingrowing toenail treated?

You will typically be booked in for an initial consultation, where the toe(s) will be assessed and, treated conservatively if possible. 

You will also have the option of having nail surgery if it is considered appropriate and you are fit for the procedure. 

Ready to book an appointment?

What you need to know about nail surgery

  • The toe is anaesthetised with two injections - one in each side of the toe. 

    Once the toe has been confirmed to be numb, a small band is applied around the toe, meaning that the blood supply is temporarily stopped and so that surgery can be performed quickly and effectively. 

    The affected edge of the nail is removed, or the whole nail, if that is what was decided would be done, and then the nail bed where which has been exposed is killed off - if it was decided that that bit of nail should not grow back. 

    We then apply a non-stick, anti-bacterial dressing to the toe and wrap it up in lots of soft gauze.   

    1. You can normally remove the dressing from the toe the next day or up to 5 days later (follow your podiatrist's instructions)

    2. You can shower as normal from this point, but...

    3. Until it is healed, you will also need to:

      1. bathe your foot in warm salt water for 5 minutes, at least once a day

      2. apply an antiseptic treatment to the toe after the foot bath, if told to do so

      3. put a plaster on over the toe, I recommend these ones...

      4. Keep the toe clean and dry, unless you are getting it wet for cleaning

  • This process usually takes anywhere from:

    • 10 days (if no chemical is applied)

    • to 4-6 weeks (if the chemical is applied).

    These time scales may be longer if you get an infection or any other complications, or if you smoke.

  • Common

    • Pain

    • Bruising

    • Bleeding 

    • Swelling of the digit


    • Infection 

      • Usually mild​

      • Rarely severe

    • The nail regrows despite application of chemical (5% risk)

    • The nail becomes deformed, or the non-operated edge starts to grow in

    Very rare

    • Blood clots (rare)

      • Deep Vein Thrombosis​

      • Pulmonary Embolism

    • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)​

    • Other nerve injury from the local anaesthesia may continue to cause trouble (very rare)

  • Nail surgery is typically priced as a package - meaning that you pay for the procedure and the aftercare and dressings are included. 

    The package price of nail surgery for one toe is £350.

    The package price of nail surgery for two toes is: £425. 

    In certain circumstances, it is possible to offer pricing for the procedure and aftercare separately. 

    If you are a good candidate for nail surgery and you are also happy to go ahead on the day of your initial consultation, then this may be possible in some circumstances.

  • Nail surgery is not always necessary or appropriate. 

    There are some occasions where re-shaping the nail so that it stops ingrowing may be enough to settle your symptoms, although in most circumstances, this will only delay the inevitable need for nail surgery. This option will be discussed with you and offered to you at your appointment. 

    Another option is to chemically dissolve the nail, however, this does not solve the issue that you have and will simply mean that when the nail grows back as it did before. 

    In some instances as well, it can be worthwhile looking at the skin around the nail. If there is an excess of skin around the nail, removing this can mean a shorter healing time and a wider nail plate. This option may be discussed with you during your procedure. 

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This is a picture of Jeremy Ousey, director and podiatrist of Keep On Your Feet.

About the Author

Jeremy Ousey is the owner at Swansea's podiatry clinic: Keep On Your Feet. All the information found on this page was written by him (there's no AI or Chat-GPT here!), and has been carefully chosen to provide you with the information that you need to know about the condition. Jeremy has a Bachelor of Science in Podiatry, with honours, a Post-Graduate Certificate in Podiatric Sports Medicine, a Post-Graduate Diploma in Medical Ultrasound, and two Master's of Science degrees in the Theory of Podiatric Surgery, and Sports & Exercise Medicine. If you would like to know more about Jeremy, please click here.

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