What does the operation involve?
The procedure for an ingrown toenail will last a duration of 60 minutes. A local anaesthetic will be used to numb your toe. The nail will be split from under the skin, and then removed from the nail matrix. The toe will be dressed, following the application of a chemical which prevents the regrowth of nail cells. This is minor surgery and no stitches are required.
After the operation
- A comfortable, loose fitting shoe should be brought along to the surgery appointment to wear afterwards.
- We recommend someone else drives you home after the surgery as in some cases you may have altered sensation in the foot.
- It is advised to go home and elevate your foot. It takes about 2 hours for the anaesthetic to wear off and if it is sore/painful then you can take an over the counter analgesic like Panadol.
- The dressing must be kept dry until your follow up appointment with the podiatrist.
- Ideally there should be no contact activity for at least a week however passive exercise may start 2 days following your operation.
Do I need time off work?
No, not usually. However this does depend on your occupation. Ideally you would have the surgery later in the day and then go home and elevate your foot. You can return to work the following day.
What could go wrong?
There is a 20% chance that the nail can grow back. Some people have a double matrix (where the nail grows) so this is why it would come back. We cannot advise of this beforehand.
Sometimes the wound site can get infected. If this happens you can get antibiotics from your Doctor.
If you have any questions please discuss this with the podiatrist before your surgery.