During the last 5-6 years, laser therapy has been increasingly used in the treatment of onychomycosis (nail fungus). This apparatus technique has found application in many areas of medicine, but it shows the best results in dermatology. Fighting a fungal infection with a laser beam is a simple and effective way to solve a problem. However, it applies, albeit to a cosmetic, but an operation, therefore it has its own characteristics that you should learn about before going to the clinic.
General information about the procedure
A cosmetology laser is a device that converts electrical energy into a beam of optical light. Radiation easily penetrates the structure of human skin and acts on it in accordance with the task, for example, removes dead tissue, triggers biological processes or destroys infections, including pathogenic fungi.
In dermatology, onychomycosis is mainly used laser devices with low intensity. They do not destroy the structure of the nail plate, but disinfect it and burn out not only the pathogenic microflora, but also bacteria, viruses and microbes. High-intensity equipment is an extreme measure that is urgent if necessary to remove the keratin layer, which is destroyed by fungus by more than 60%, painlessly. This is a good alternative to surgery (scalpel), because after laser therapy, the nail grows several times faster and does not differ in form from the previous one.
The principle of operation of the cosmetology laser in onychomycosis
Optical radiation can be regulated. Its depth, impact force and temperature of heating the biomaterial is selected depending on the specific case and is determined by the following factors:
- keratin thickness;
- fungal area;
- the degree of neglect of the disease;
- The body’s sensitivity to the laser.
After setting up the device, the laser is directed to the surface of the nail. It quickly penetrates its structure, reaching soft tissues, and literally heats keratin and epidermis. When the temperature rises, the mycelium of the fungus dies, and along with it, its spores are burned, which guarantees no onychomycosis recurrence after the procedure.
Despite the fact that “burning” of living cells occurs, the patient does not feel severe pain. The operation takes place without discomfort, bleeding and other unpleasant consequences.
What are the advantages of laser therapy?
Laser treatment of fungus on the nails is not only an effective way to combat pathogenic microflora, but also the safest. The procedure is performed by a non-contact method, that is, the equipment does not touch the patient’s nails or skin, due to which it is impossible to get infected with anything else. For comparison: after visiting the manicure room, where the client removes the affected part of the keratin plate with sharp scissors and then treats it with an antifungal agent, a person develops diseases such as dermatitis, scabies, papillomavirus and even AIDS. After all, it is not a secret to anyone that employees of the beauty salon often neglect the rules for sterilizing instruments.
Other benefits of laser therapy include:
- No pain during the operation. The temperature of tissue heating is minimal, but it is enough to destroy the fungus. In rare cases, when a person comes to the reception with a hypersensitivity of the nerve receptors or a child, the patient may feel a slight burning sensation in the nail area, which is easily removed by local anesthetics;
- Low probability of relapse. Laser therapy is the only treatment for onychomycosis, which gives a 100% result. At observance of recommendations of doctors it is possible to be sure that the fungus will not return again;
- Minimum list of side effects and contraindications . The procedure is suitable for almost everyone – children, the elderly, pregnant and lactating mothers. In the absence of any restrictions, she has no “side effects”;
- Availability. To pass the laser treatment of the fungus that struck the nail plate, will succeed in any private clinic or a large cosmetology center. About the nearest location of the desired institution can be found on the Internet;
- Fast rehabilitation period. After the procedure there is no need to take a sick leave. Everything heals in a short time, you can work or do your favorite things within 30-40 minutes after the operation.
In addition, the patient is deprived of the need to take potent antifungal drugs, which are the basis of any drug course to combat onychomycosis. They negatively affect the state of the liver and generally have a bad effect on the body’s work. The laser does not have such minuses, which is what earned it popularity among dermatologists and people suffering from fungus.
The disadvantages of the technique
Laser nail fungus treatment has only one drawback – high cost. The equipment used during the procedure is very expensive. In addition, the owners of clinics and beauty salons need to pay for its maintenance and staff training in working with it. For this reason, many people cannot afford laser therapy. On average, one trip to honey. the institution will cost the client from 2000 rubles.
The price of a full course of onychomycosis treatment with optical radiation may vary. That affects the final cost of the operation, will be discussed below.
Laser therapy is not suitable for patients who have the following health problems:
- severe pathologies of the heart and blood vessels;
- inflammation of the skin around the nail plate and under it;
- oncological tumors near the infected area;
- epilepsy and other mental disorders;
- skin diseases of infectious and / or viral nature;
- immunity problems;
- open wounds, ulcers of unknown origin near the nail.
Also, the procedure will be refused if the client is in a state of drug or alcohol intoxication.
“Rejections” are possible only if the procedure is performed by a person without a specialized education or with non-compliance with the basic rules of laser therapy. Usually because of this in a patient:
- the skin around the nail turns red;
- feel pain when pressing on the plate;
- stratified healthy keratin;
- the plate is deformed or grows with defects;
- the laser-treated area turns yellow, peels off;
- the nail moves away from the bed and eventually disappears;
- under the keratin surface scars are formed, which leads to a change in its shape.
If a cosmetologist or a doctor incorrectly tunes the power of optical radiation, then a thermal burn or bruising may appear under the nail. In this case, without complete removal of the plate is not enough.
To avoid side effects, experts recommend to pay attention to the choice of medical institution and in no case do not go to questionable beauty salons, where the operation is performed too cheaply. It is also advisable to go to the clinic site, read reviews about it and talk to those who have already undergone the procedure. It is better to spend a little extra time on training than to treat the consequences of staff inexperience.
How to treat fungus laser
Before going to the clinic, the patient needs to prepare:
- consult with a dermatologist, preferably in a public hospital, as in the clinic such a service is either unavailable or expensive;
- pass tests to make sure that the modification of the nail is actually caused by the activity of pathogenic microflora;
- the day before visiting the beauty parlor, you need to remove the remnants of decorative or therapeutic varnish, wash hands or feet (depending on where the affected nail is) with soap;
- buy clean socks and disinfect shoes with bleach, vinegar or chlorhexidine.
After such simple measures, you can go to the doctor for a procedure.
The treatment of onychomycosis with a laser consists of several stages:
- A preliminary conversation with the patient, during which the particular case is clarified and possible contraindications are identified;
- Treatment of the foot and nail plate with an antiseptic, application of an anesthetic drug (if necessary);
- Laser exposure to keratin and surrounding tissues;
- Re-disinfection and sterile dressing.
While the operation is underway, the patient’s shoes and socks are placed in the sterilizer. This is a device that freezes or kills infrared radiation spores of the fungus, microbes and bacteria to prevent re-infection.
Features of the rehabilitation period
Despite the fact that the patient does not lose his capacity for some time and can go home immediately after the laser therapy procedure, he will have to follow some recommendations in the future:
- it is necessary to ventilate the room, sanitize slippers (and their own, and other people living in the apartment), wash the floors;
- to be cleaned and underwear, as well as bed and outerwear;
- need to wipe the floors with water and bleach, wash rugs, wash plumbing and other common items;
- feet regularly (at least once every two days) hover in water with the addition of salt and soda;
- rub the nail with a cotton swab dipped in alcohol in the morning and evening;
- during the week on the plate can not be applied decorative varnishes.
In addition, you need to purchase antifungal cream or ointment in a pharmacy. They periodically process the entire foot or hands. This and other recommendations will reduce the likelihood of infection by a fungus, the spores of which are in the environment.
When to treat or remove the nail with a laser
The indications for treating a session of laser therapy is any modification of the nail. And it can be not only a fungal infection. The plate can be deformed or destroyed for other reasons, such as a finger bruise, lack of useful substances in the body (vitamin deficiency), wearing tight shoes or dermatological skin diseases that have gone to the surface of keratin.
The following symptoms should also alert:
- itching and redness of the skin, especially near the nails and between the fingers;
- unpleasant foot or hand odor;
- white plaque on the epidermis;
- cracking plate;
- yellowing of the nail;
- dry skin;
- pain when wearing shoes or performing household tasks;
- thickening of the keratin layer.
All these are signs of onychomycosis. When they are detected, you should immediately make an appointment with a doctor and be examined. With timely treatment to the doctor to cure nail fungus is not difficult.
Laser removal is indicated in the event that onychomycosis has passed into a neglected form, an extensive damage to the nail (more than 2/3) of the pathogenic microflora has been diagnosed or the plate has begun to rapidly deteriorate. In this case, the optical radiation gently “breaks” the keratin into fragments, which are alternately removed with sterile, disposable forceps. After on the finger remains healthy skin, over time zatyagivayuschiysya film. After a few months, the nail grows clean from the fungus.
Cost of the procedure and additional services
The starting price of laser therapy for onychomycosis is 2000 rubles per procedure. Sometimes one visit to a medical institution is enough, and in severe cases it is necessary to go to a session up to 3 times.
The final amount of treatment with a laser, in addition to the operation itself, includes:
- consultation with a local dermatologist;
- on-site testing;
- payment of drugs used for the treatment of the stop before and after the procedure;
- sterilization of personal items.
In large treatment centers, some additional services are provided free of charge, but this should be known in advance in order not to get into an unpleasant situation. If you have to pay for everything, you can save money by first passing an examination and passing tests at a public hospital.
Real reviews of laser therapy for onychomycosis
Elizabeth, 27 years old.
My spouse wrote me for laser therapy, since I have been suffering from a fungus on my hands for 2 months, both mentally and physically, and I’m afraid to go to the doctor. He forcibly brought him to the hospital, forced him to talk to the doctor and go for an operation, for which I am grateful. Everything went much easier than it seemed.
Anna, 21 years old.
A fungus on the nail of the right leg picked up during a hike in the pool. At first, she did not attach importance to minor changes, but once, while working on the removal of cosmetic varnish, she noticed that the plate began to stratify. I decided to go to the doctor and found out that I have a fungus. I was offered a choice of several options – drug and hardware treatment. I did not want to drink medicine, I agreed to the laser. Everything went quickly and without pain. To completely get rid of the fungus, one trip to the clinic was enough.
Lesha, 30 years old.
The effectiveness of the laser checked for yourself. The procedure takes no more than 20 minutes, there is no discomfort, and the price … It is cheaper than the full course of treatment of the fungus with drugs, despite the fact that the drugs do not always give a positive result.