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Operative Technique with Rapid Recovery for Ingrown Nails with Granulation Tissue Formation in Childhood


  • The authors have indicated no significant interest with commercial supporters.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Alejandro Zavala, MD, Department of Surgery, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Diagonal Paraguay 415 Of. 22, Santiago, Chile, or e-mail:



Ingrown toenail is a common disease that causes pain and discomfort. There are conservative and surgical treatments, but many have the drawbacks of recurrence and long recovery time.


To analyze for the first time the results of a technique called nail splinting using a flexible tube secured using a suture (FTSS) performed on a series of patients with ingrown toenails.

Methods and Materials

A retrospective descriptive study of 71 pediatric patients operated on using the FTSS technique between 2001 and 2009 was performed. The data were collected using medical record review or telephone survey. The main outcomes were high percentage of success and shorter recovery time than with partial matrix excision.


Sixty-two patients (87.3%) were cured using a single procedure, with an average follow-up of 13.1 months. Recurrence occurred in nine patients (12.6%); three required the classic technique with resection of the matrix and nail bed plastic surgery, and in 6, FTSS was repeated with good results.


Flexible tube secured using a suture has a lower recurrence rate than matricectomy. Additional advantages are the speed with which complaints can be monitored and quick return to school because recovery may be as short as 48 hours.