What is nail psoriasis?

Nail Psoriasis
Jump to

How is nail psoriasis treated?

Psoriasis of the nail can be very hard to treat, and treatment is not always successful.

Treatments include some of the same topical and systemic therapies that are used to treat psoriasis that affects the skin. In some cases, medicines can be injected into the nail bed.

Treatments take time to work, and you may not see improvement for months. New, healthy nails may need up to a year to grow.

Caring for your nails when you have psoriasis

Here are some tips you can try to protect your nails.

  • Soak them before trimming.
  • Trim them short and file the edges smooth to avoid injuring them or scratching yourself.

    Avoid excessive cleaning under the nail, because it may promote psoriasis scale buildup.

  • Do not cut, tear, or bite the skin around your nails (cuticles).
  • Use colorless nail polish to protect your nails.
  • Wear gloves when working with your hands.
  • Follow instructions for prescribed medicines.

What is nail psoriasis?

Many people who have psoriasis have nail changes. This can involve:

  • Pitting on the surface of the nail.
  • Defects in the nail, such as ridges or crumbling nails.
  • Yellowish color to the toenails (and sometimes fingernails).
  • Thickening of the fingernails or toenails.
  • Spots under the fingernails, such as yellow-red patches.
  • Separation of the nail from the nail bed.
  • Total loss of the nail bed.

Nail changes rarely happen without other signs of psoriasis. And sometimes changes in the nails can confirm a diagnosis of psoriasis. Nail problems happen most often in people with psoriatic arthritis.

©2011-2024 Healthwise, Incorporated

The content above contains general health information provided by Healthwise, Incorporated, and reviewed by its medical experts. This content should not replace the advice of your healthcare provider. Not all treatments or services described are offered as services by us. For recommended treatments, please consult your healthcare provider.