Goodbye Toenail Fungus

While serving in the United States Armed Forces, Chet Young did three tours of duty in Vietnam. At some point, during at least one of those tours, Chet was exposed to Agent Orange, a hazardous material that can cause diabetes, kidney disease and many other chronic conditions.

Years later, when he first learned he had indeed contracted Type 2 diabetes, the diagnosis came as no surprise to Chet, who more recently thought a problem with toenail fungus was being caused by his diabetes. He soon found out differently.

“I have my feet examined on a regular basis because diabetes can cause circulatory issues and problems with the feet,” he explains. “When the fungus appeared, I assumed the two were connected, but they’re not.

After moving to Fort Myers a few years ago, Chet was referred to Hal L. Bozof, DPM, a board-certified podiatric physician, for treatment. Dr. Bozof explained to Chet that toenail fungus can be difficult to eliminate.

Laser Advantages

Photo by Nerissa Johnson.

Chet can wear flip-flops once again and no longer has to hide his feet.

“It typically grows in a dark, warm, moist environment,” Dr. Bozof explains. “Once it gets under the skin or nail, that’s a perfect place for the fungus to thrive. It can then spread from one toenail to the next. Oftentimes, the fungus will develop underneath the nail plate.”

Historically, treatment for fungal nails has included topical medications, oral agents (pills) or surgical removal of the nail plate, which have been relatively ineffective.

“The most efficient way to kill the fungus is with the Fox Laser, which we use in my office,” Dr. Bozof explains. “It is essentially pain free, and there are no side effects. It takes only a short time per treatment and may require two or three sessions, depending on how many nails are treated and the extent of the fungus.

“The laser produces heat that penetrates the nail plate and thereby kills the fungus, which lives in and underneath the toenail,” continues Dr. Bozof.

“One of the most impressive features is that there is no recovery time,” adds Dr. Bozof. “Shoes can be worn immediately after the treatment, unlike having the nails removed.”

Toenails grow very slowly. It can take up to a year or more to grow a new toenail, which is why it can be so hard to get rid of toenail fungus. The fungus often doesn’t go away until a new toenail can grow back.

Chet is thrilled with the care he received and says that the fungus condition has been resolved and his nails are now normal once again.

“I don’t have to be embarrassed about my feet anymore!” he exclaims. “I can wear sandals and flip-flops and not be worried about how my feet look. It’s a relief!”

 

 

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    • Hal L. Bozof, DPM

      Hal L. Bozof, DPM, is board certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and the American Academy of Wound Management. He is a Fellow of the American College of Foot & Ankle Surgeons. He completed his undergraduate degree at Me... Read More

    • Hal L. Bozof, DPM

      Hal L. Bozof, DPM, is board certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and the American Academy of Wound Management. He is a Fellow of the American College of Foot & Ankle Surgeons. He completed his undergraduate degree at Me... Read More