Nail fungus (onychomycosis) is diagnosed on average in 10-15% of the world's population, and among people over 60 years of age, the incidence reaches 30-50%. Men suffer 1. 3 times more often than women, which is probably due to an insufficiently responsible attitude to the problem. It is difficult to get rid of onychomycosis, but it is possible, and the main task of the doctor and patient is to choose the right remedy for nail fungus. We talk about what drugs are and how they work.
Is therapy necessary for fungus?
Many people, especially older men, neglect the treatment of the fungus, believing that this problem is only aesthetic and, apart from a cosmetic defect, does not cause any consequences. This is a pretty dangerous misconception. We explain why.
First, the fungus is extremely contagious. If you do not pay attention to treatment, the infection spreads quickly. The causative agents of onychomycosis are easily transmitted through household items, and the patient runs the risk of infecting the entire family.
Secondly (and most importantly), the problem of nail fungus is by no means only cosmetic. A neglected disease significantly reduces the quality of life: pain appears, difficulties arise with the selection of shoes and all sorts of household inconveniences. The nail plate, affected by the fungus, can collapse over time. But it's still half the trouble. Without timely and proper treatment, onychomycosis harms the entire body. The risk of allergies increases (due to the developing hypersensitivity to fungi and their metabolic products), infectious complications often join (for example, erysipelas). Against the background of onychomycosis, any skin diseases are more severe. Not to mention that chronic infection weakens the immune system.
So the answer is unequivocal: it is necessary to treat nail fungus, and as soon as possible. The further the process has gone, the more difficult it is to get rid of the disease. Therefore, therapy should ideally be started at the first sign of injury. Another issue is how to treat. The variety of drugs is so great that it is easy to get confused. But you need to know how they work in order to understand which remedy helps get rid of nail fungus. We will tell about this.
Choosing a remedy for nail fungus
On the net you can find a lot of recommendations for the fight against fungus. Traditional medicine advises to get rid of it with the help of soda, ammonia, propolis, kerosene, celandine juice, essential oils. There are recipes for nail fungus remedies with vinegar, iodine, hydrogen peroxide. Resorting to such seemingly harmless home methods, the patient only exacerbates the problem. Not a single traditional medicine destroys the pathogens of onychomycosis, and the lesion progresses, covering an increasing area of the nail plate. In the end, the patient ends up in the dermatologist's office with a neglected fungus that is very difficult to treat.
So advice number one - no self-treatment! If signs of the disease are found, it is necessary to contact a dermatologist who will prescribe an effective drug for nail fungus. Self-medication is unacceptable, if only because onychomycosis is caused by different types of pathogens, and in each case it is important to choose the right active ingredient. And in order not to doubt the recommendations of a specialist, it is worth knowing how they work and how the drugs used to treat this disease differ from each other.
Means for the treatment of nail fungus can be classified according to the form of release and the active ingredient. Of the other selection criteria, the price category and ease of use matter.
External preparations against nail fungus are produced in the form of varnish, spray, cream (ointment) and solution.
Antifungalvarnishes, as a rule, women prefer, because with the help of such products it is possible to combine treatment with cosmetic care. Before processing, it is necessary to grind the surface of the nail plate with a file. After applying the medical varnish, you can use decorative. This is the main advantage of this dosage form.
However, varnishes are not universal. Firstly, they are effective only with a small area of damage. If the fungus has spread to more than one third of the nail plate, the remedy will not help. Secondly, the drug in the form of varnish can only cope with superficial mycosis. This is because it cannot penetrate into the lower layers of the nail. With a deep lesion, when the nail plate is thickened, the antifungal agent in the form of nail polish will not work - a stronger drug is needed.
Cream and spray- similar forms: both have an oil base. They are ideal for the treatment of skin mycoses, which, by the way, often accompany nail fungus. The tool easily penetrates into the lower layers of the epidermis, destroying the pathogen. But the nail has a denser structure, and the oil-based preparation does not reach all the sites of infection. Cream or spray is best used as an auxiliary part of the treatment of onychomycosis - with concomitant fungal infections of the skin of the feet.
Solution- the optimal form of antifungal agent for nails. The drug on a water-alcohol basis penetrates deeply into the nail plate, filling the voids and channels through which the pathogen spreads. Therefore, the fungicidal and fungistatic effect of the liquid remedy for nail fungus is stronger than in other forms.
Preparations against fungus are mainly substances of synthetic (rarely natural) origin, diverse in chemical structure. Depending on it, the spectrum of their activity differs, that is, the action against certain pathogens. Given the fact that onychomycosis can be caused by different types of pathogenic fungi, the correct choice of the active substance is very important.
To reliably establish the type of pathogen, it is necessary to conduct a microbiological study of a tissue fragment. But usually you can determine the type of fungus by the external features of the affected nail. The most common causative agent of onychomycosis is Trichophyton Rubrum. Less commonly, the disease is caused by other types of dermatophytes, yeast-like and mold fungi.
In terms of chemical structure, there are several groups of antifungal drugs:
Polyena. These include substances such as nystatin, levorin, amphotericin. When taken orally, they are active against many types of fungi, but topical application of these agents is effective only for candidiasis. Therefore, polyenes are usually not prescribed for the treatment of onychomycosis.
Azoles. For external use, drugs based on the substances clotrimazole, econazole, miconazole, oxiconazole, isoconazole, bifonazole are used. Their action is predominantly fungistatic - in other words, these drugs stop the development of the fungus. The fungicidal effect (destruction of the pathogen) is possible when high concentrations of the substance in the tissues are reached. Azoles are active against Candida yeast-like fungi and dermatomycetes, which cause skin lesions. With onychomycosis, these drugs are not very effective.
Allylamines. This is the main group of antifungal agents prescribed for the treatment of mycoses of the skin and nails. For topical use, products based on terbinafine and naftifine are suitable. The first is also prescribed orally at an advanced stage of the disease. Naftifine is an effective treatment for onychomycosis. It exhibits fungicidal activity against dermatophytes (including Trichophyton Rubrum), yeasts and molds - in a word, the main possible causative agents of fungal infections of the nails. In addition, naftifine acts on many bacteria.
Of the other substances not included in these groups, amorolfine and ciclopirox are used to treat onychomycosis. Both drugs are applied topically, mainly as part of antifungal varnishes.
Ease of use
Getting rid of the fungus is a long process. For several months, nail treatment will become a daily procedure, otherwise a positive result will not be achieved. Given the duration of treatment, it is important to choose a tool that is convenient to use. In the case of varnish, it should be borne in mind that the surface of the nail must be ground down before each use. Therefore, it is good if there are disposable files in the kit. In the case of a solution, it is preferable to choose a product packaged in a sealed bottle with a dropper stopper. The elongated dropper nose is more convenient for spot application of the solution where it can penetrate deep into the nail plate. This form is optimal in dosage: it is easy to measure and apply the required amount of the drug, which makes consumption more economical.
Packing and course cost
Treatment of the fungus should be continued until the full growth of a healthy nail plate. With onychomycosis of the hands, this process takes about four months. Toenails grow more slowly on toenails and can take up to a year to heal. So the purchase of an antifungal agent is not a one-time expense, but a regular expense item, and, of course, I want to reduce it as much as possible. However, the desire to save should not outweigh: the main selection criterion is efficiency. A reasonable decision is to focus on the active substance. Sometimes this makes it possible to choose an analogue of a widely advertised drug, equal to it in efficiency, but more profitable in price.
Onychomycosis not only reduces the quality of life, but also threatens with serious complications. Therefore, when the first signs of infection are detected, it is necessary to consult a doctor as soon as possible and begin treatment.remedies for toenail and handnail fungus with clinically proven effectiveness.
Solution for nail fungus
To combat nail fungus, you can use the drug in the form of a solution. The active ingredient of the drug is naftifine, a substance from the allylamine group, which is active against most types of pathogenic fungi. It destroys dermatophytes (Trichophyton, Epidermophyton, Microsporum), yeast fungi Candida, mold Aspergilla and other types of causative agents of mycoses of nails and skin. The drug in the form of a solution penetrates into the thickness of the nail plate, moves along the path of the spread of the fungus and creates stable concentrations of the drug in the zone of infection accumulation.
The action of the drug is fungicidal, that is, it does not just stop the development of the fungus, but destroys it.
In addition, naftifine has antibacterial activity. Fungal diseases of the nails and skin are often complicated by bacterial infections, and the use of the drug can solve both problems at the same time.
An additional effect of naftifine is anti-inflammatory. It helps reduce the redness, swelling, and itching that often accompanies a fungal infection.
Indications for the use of the solution include fungal infections not only of the nail plate, but also of smooth skin, skin folds and interdigital lesions, as well as candidiasis, pityriasis versicolor, inflammatory dermatomycosis. The same range of indications for other products of the line - cream and spray.