Toenail infection persists after nail partially removed twice in three weeks
My wife's infected toenail was initially treated with three different courses of antibiotics, but to no advail. Three weeks ago, a doctor removed part of the nail, but neither the drugs not the removal helped. We went to a second doctor yesterday who cut the nail back further on both sides. Today the infected area looks six times worse (based on the size and redness of the inflamation.)
Over these weeks, she has seen three podiatrists and one dermatologist. They have given her conflicting advice, but she has been attentive to soaking the toe three times a day for 15 minutes, using antibiotic creams they prescribed, and keeping her foot elevated. She is extremely healthy; x-rays and an ultrasound show nothing abnormal. She has restricted her activities almost completely, so we are perplexed as to why the infection is not under control yet, and seemingly has become worse. Are there any comments you can offer? Thank you.
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Initially I would have recommended an MRI and xrays to rule out a bone infection which could have explained why the problem was not resolving itself. I am not sure about the ultrasound, so either the xrays should be repeated as bone infections can take a while to show up on xray, or you might consider an MRI.
Another consideration is whether or not the growth plate of the nail was cauterized (destroyed to prevent regrowth on the ingrown nail). If that was the case, and a chemical was applied , your wife may be having a reaction to the chemical which could result in what appears as an infection but in essence is not.
You can present these thoughts to your doctors and see if they are in agreement or not.
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