What is ingrown toenail surgery?
The preferred Ingrown toenail surgery procedure performed by podiatrists at Foot Health Clinic is a partial nail excision and chemical matrixectomy performed under local anaesthetic. This minimally invasive procedure involves the removal of the ingrown portion of the toenail, together with the corresponding portion of nail root, and the application of a chemical to permanently prevent that portion of the toenail from re-growing.
Research has shown that this procedure has a high success rate (98.5%) in reducing the risk of ingrown toenail recurrence.
We perform ingrown toenail surgery in the Foot Health Clinic consultation rooms, under sterile conditions. The procedure takes approximately one hour.
Is ingrown toenail surgery painful?
Our surgical technique for ingrown toenails is a minimally invasive procedure that requires no cutting of the skin and no stitches. This reduces the time it takes the toe to heal and minimises any post-operative pain. Prior to surgery, we administer a local anaesthetic that numbs the entire toe for one-two hours, so there is no pain during or immediately after the procedure. If there is any discomfort once the anaesthetic wears off, it is usually well managed with paracetamol, rest and elevation of the foot.
Will my child need time off school?
Immediately after the procedure your child should rest and keep the foot elevated for the rest of the day. Your child will also need to wear an open-toe shoe for one to two weeks, and avoid tight-fitting footwear (eg ballet slippers, ice-skates, football boots, tapered-toe shoes).
Most children and adolescents recover very quickly from ingrown toenail surgery and are able to return to school within a day or two. Children should not participate in physical education, sport or swimming for two weeks after the procedure. If your child is actively participating in sports, we suggest you arrange the surgery to coincide with the school holidays.
Will my child need to take antibiotics?
With any surgical procedure there is a risk of developing an infection as the wound heals. It is important that you follow our instructions for cleaning and dressing your toe, and that you keep your toe clean and dry.
We will review your child’s foot regularly after surgery to ensure the toe is healing well. As long as there are no signs of infection (increasing pain, pus, heat, redness or swelling), it is unlikely your child will need to take antibiotics.
Do you remove the entire toenail?
In most cases, we only need to remove one edge of the nail. Once the toe is healed the toenail simply looks slightly narrower, and it can be difficult to tell that there has been any surgical correction.