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Nail disorders linked to alcohol?
Hi. I'm a 27 year old male who used to drink about 8 units a night for 3 years, recently i got into a big problem with it and sometimes drank more than this but stopped drinking heavly in january.
I have recently noticed my toe nails are whitish with red bands at the top (terrys nails?) and my finger nails show white bands in the upper area.
I went to the doctors and got a blood test and a stool test, both were refered as fine by my doctor and now i only drink about 8 units a week.

1.Could these nail problems be from drinking?
2.Is this serious as my LFT came out fine?
3.Will these nail changes go away, as i'm in remission from drinking?

4.I have heard about a drug called Sulfasalazine that they belive could reverse cirrhosis, Is there anywhere i can get more information on this and when will clinical trials start?
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202347 tn?1189759425
It is quite common to see discoloration of the toenails and fingernails with alcohol abuse as alcohol depletes many of the nutrients in your body and causes dehydration. It can also make it difficult for the body to absorb essential vitamins. You should still be checked by a podiatrist, most discoloration is causes by bacteria or fungus. With your immune system being low from consuming so much alcohol this can make you more susceptible to this.

Sulfasalazine has been found, in recent British research, to reverse or prevent the scar tissue in cirrhosis of the liver. What happens is the cells that cause the scar tissue to form also give off proteins that prevent the break down of the scar tissue, sulfasalazine appears to distract or stop the production of the proteins so that the sar tissue is allowd to break down. Also, a study at the University of Newcastle found that the drug can aid in healing cirrhosis of the liver.

I don't know where you live but the clinical trials in the US are probably not going to start testing the action of sulfasalazine on the liver for quite some time. The US is much more concerned about rheumatoid arthritis. If I remember correctly there are two trials with this drug, one still recruiting and one that has not yet begun recruiting . You can check at clinicaltrials.gov

let me know if you found what you are looking for,

xoxo- D.
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i'm having the same problem as you are/were....has anything changed since this post?  have you taken anything, which helps turn the nails back to normal?
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DutchessGolden is right, that all of the US based clinical trials are not for the indication of cirrohsis or prevention, but there are trials for cirrohtic disease.  Unfortunately, most require a confimed clincial diagnosis of cirrohsis.  So, if you were interested in attempting to revearse any damage that you may have done up till now, it would require a doctor presecribing it for you in a country where it is currently approved, or possibly buying it online.  Hope that helps.
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Thank you for responding.  I recently broke my right hand and my middle finger and ring finger on that hand are the one's that have gotten worse since then.  My hand is no longer in a cast.  After going on vacation and  drinking alcohol last week the paleness at the tips (which has been there for months and is a sign of Terry Nails according to my dermotologist) of these two fingers has turned white towards the top (this has happened over the past 2 days).  The Sulfasalizine point is very interesting considering there is scar tissue building up where I broke my middle knuckle.  If it's scar tissue that's causing the problem it seems as if based on DutchessGolden's comments that once the scar tissue forms there is nothing I can do unless I took something like Sulfasalizine to reverse the scar tissue.
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I have very yellow nails, almost orange.  Just trying to figure out if it's from drinking, although I kind of already know the answer is yes.  I haven't been sober a day since I was 19. Since I turned 33 I have tried to quit 4 times, been hospitalized twice, checked myself into a medical detox unit.  It doesn't stick, a week after detox I'm back up to a fifth of vodka a day, and how ever many beers to chase it down.  This life *****, I want to quit so bad, but last time I tried to I had tremens so bad I had to sit in a cold bath, should have gone to the ER except my phone ended up in the bath too.  I quit smoking cigs, I quit doing heroin and coke, but alcohol is a poison that is insane to get off.  I wish I had the money to go to some fancy hollywood rehab, and just live there.  The doctor won't even prescribe me benzo's to detox on, since I have a very extensive record of drug abuse.  Maybe I should just shoot a speedball of lethal dose and cry in the afterlife.
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Dotty

I had the same with my nails and yes probably result of alcohol.  Take good vitamins to replenish what you are not getting. Use alcohol as medicine to slowly wean off it.  Decrease the effects as much as possible and danger of seizures.  

Good luck,
Dave
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Hi Dotty!  I had been drinking as long as you and had been drinking 1/2 of a 750 ml bottle of vodka per day (or more). The tremors and sweating were horrible whenever I tried to stop. It was hard to wean off because I didn't have the willpower to stop at "just enough to stop the withdrawals". I finally got sober enough to go to an AA meeting--even though I thought I was a little too cool to be there. Everyone was welcoming and insightful. It was such a positive experience for me. It gave me the motivation to go one day without drinking, then another, then another. I bought the AA book and started reading. The room wasn't fancy, the people weren't dressed up, but they were open and kind and it has changed my life. It's so hard to take the first step and detox, but if you do, it will change your life too. I am so much more clear-headed and I feel so much better!  My advice is too give it a try. It's worth the hour spent to meet a room full of people who have been exactly where you are and made it through. Good luck Dotty. You CAN do it! REL
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