Congenital Onychodystrophy of the Index Fingers Treatment & Management

Updated: Feb 13, 2019
  • Author: Stefanos F Haddad, MD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Treatment

Approach Considerations

Aggressive surgical treatment is generally not warranted. Reassurance and support are important to help affected individuals adjust to living with this disorder.

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Medical Care

Congenital onychodystrophy of the index finger (COIF) is of only cosmetic significance. After diagnosis, reassuring the patient and family is all that is necessary. Keeping nails clipped short can be of value to ensure that nails do not catch on surfaces during activities of daily living. Artificial nails can be a useful camouflage in self-conscious individuals. [17]

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Surgical Care

Surgical correction may be elected in cases in which syndactyly is present. Pincer nail deformity can be successfully treated with a specialized nail device that helps address nail curvature. [18] Use of a device composed of a shape-memory alloy can help change the nail shape and have a lasting benefit as a new nail grows in.

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Consultations

No consultations are necessary in onychodystrophy of the index finger (COIF).

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Diet

Congenital onychodystrophy of the index finger (COIF) is not related to or affected by diet.

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Activity

The absence of an index fingernail rarely affects the patient's ability to perform functions. Often, the middle fingernail can be used with the thumb if a pincer grip is required. Occasionally, the index finger may be functionally impaired.

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