Psychosocial impact of onychomycosis: a review

Authors

  • Anna Chacon MD,

    1. Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
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  • Katlein Franca MD, MSC,

    1. Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
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  • Alexandra Fernandez BA,

    1. Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
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  • Keyvan Nouri MD

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
    • Correspondence

      Keyvan Nouri, md

      Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery

      Miller School of Medicine

      University of Miami

      Miami

      FL

      USA

      E-mail: k.nouri@med.miami.edu

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  • Conflicts of interest: There are no conflicts of interest.

Abstract

Onychomycosis (tinea unguium) is the most common nail disorder. Nonetheless, it requires lengthy, often ineffective treatments, and recurrence is frequent. Predominantly a disease of the elderly, onychomycosis is becoming more and more common. Besides interfering with normal nail function, fungal nail infections are relatively painful, unsightly in appearance, disrupt daily activities, and have a negative psychosocial connotation. Commonly reported psychosocial factors are embarrassment, low self-esteem, and social withdrawal. Yet advances in therapy have been achieved since these reports were made, and many of these treatment options have proven to be more effective. Thus, the impact of these advances on psychosocial well-being of patients with onychomycosis is worth analyzing. The objective of this paper is to review studies that investigated the psychosocial impact of onychomycosis on a variety of patient populations. An alternative, total patient approach that dermatologists and general practitioners alike could use to incorporate patients' psychosocial well-being into the holistic management of onychomycosis will also be discussed.

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