Nail avulsion, or nail surgery, is a minor surgical procedure to remove whole or part of a nail plate.
The foot is cleansed with an antiseptic and local anaesthetic is usually given by means of two injections to the affected toe. The anaesthetic lasts a couple of hours and will totally block all pain sensation during the operation.
Once numb, an elastic strip is wound around the toe from tip to base and acts as a tourniquet. No cutting or stitching is involved. The appropriate part of the nail is simply lifted and removed from that part of the nail bed. The nail matrix, which is the part that produces the nail plate, is then treated with a chemical called Phenol to prevent further unwanted re-growth of the nail. The tourniquet is then removed. A sterile dressing is applied to the toe and you can then leave the clinic. The whole procedure takes about an hour. However, the anaesthetic may still have some effect for several hours. It is recommended that you do not drive until full sensation returns to your foot.
At this practice, we only use nail surgery kits prepared by The Royal Infirmary Central Sterilising Dept.