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2109342 tn?1380912575

Anyone having nail problems with Lyme?

On my right hand....under my thumb cuticle, it looks like mold (black) is starting to grow again. When it continues to grow, a small hole will eat through that part of my nail, under the cuticle (no pain but itches so much). The hole will eventually close, leaving a high ridge. As the nail continues to grow,  that ridge grows out & more mold will form under the cuticle. Then, another small hole will eat through the nail. I'll end up with ridge after ridge on my nail. My thumb nail will start growing to the side, because of the weight of the high ridges. I'll need to keep the ridges filed down, level with my original nail, so I don't have so much pull on it. That "pull" hurts terribly. I feel no pain when I keep the ridges filed down.

This was ongoing for a few years. Never went away, until I started my Lyme meds, a few months ago. Only took 2-3 weeks, after starting the meds and my nail was healed and didn't come back, until last week. I can't take the meds for fungus. Lamasil was one of those meds. Nothing I did for fungus worked. Even tried Mentholatum, but it turned the black to a yucky green and looked like moss. Used that procedure daily for months, but didn't work. This is why I'm thinking it could be Lyme related.
13 Responses
1763947 tn?1334058919
My nail problems are different and my LLMD think related to my hypothyroidism which is caused by Lyme.

They became ver weak and almost look like the circles from an open tree trunk on the nail. Not pretty.

I never had the fungus but it wouldn't surprise me to be from the Lyme. What does your LLMD say?
Avatar universal
I haven't had this issue, so haven't done much reading on it, but here is a clip from a 2001 article by Garth Nicholson, a Lyme doc I have read about but don't know much of anything about his general treatment approaches, except that he seems to deploy antibiotics as well as herbs and other things.  What I've read of his seems fairly reasonable, so fwiw, see below -- each of the three paragraphs has something that might be of interest:



Yeast overgrowth can occur, especially in females (vaginal infections).Gynecologists recommend Nizoral, Diflucan, Mycelex, or anti-yeast creams. Metronidazole [Flagyl, Prostat] has been used to prevent fungal or parasite overgrowth or other antifungals [Nystatin, Amphotericin B, Fluconazole, Diflucan or Pau d' arco, 7 capsules/2X/day] have been administered for fungal infections that can occur while on antibiotics.

Some patients have as their principal problem systemic fungal infections that can be seen using dark field microscopy of blood smears. For superficial fungal infections, such as fungal nail, a topical mixture of Laminsil in 17% DMSO 2X/day is effective. As mentioned above, L. acidophilus mixtures are used to restore gut flora. Bacterial overgrowth can also occur, for example, in between cycles of antibiotics or after antibiotics/antivirals have been stopped. This can be controlled with 2-wk courses of Augmentin (3 X 500 mg/day) in between cycles or concurrent with other antibiotics.

Nutraceutical approaches to controlling yeast infections include: Pau d' arco, grapefruit extract, olive leaf, caprylic acid, garlic extract and oregano oil. Diet is especially important in controlling yeast overgrowth, and the dietary instructions above should be followed, such as the elimination of most simple sugars from the diet.

It's posted at

www [dot] prohealth [dot] com / library /showarticle [dot] cfm?libid = 8026

2109342 tn?1380912575
Unfortunately, I don't have an LLMD yet. Hoping to finally go to one by the end of this month.

My nails were weak/soft & broke easily, until I started taking these meds, a few months ago. Now, my nails are very strong & grow fast. They still break, at times, but look so much better, than they did before.

Hope you can get your nails cleared up soon. This disease certainly causes many problems in so many different areas.
2109342 tn?1380912575
Very interesting & informative....thank you.

Looks like I'm on the right track, since I'm already taking Flagyl & acidophilus. My doctor gave me permission to increase the Flagyl, a little. I'll be starting that tomorrow. I'll read up on all other meds mentioned in the article & might try them.
1763947 tn?1334058919

Which medication helped your nails? I even take a hair, skin and nails supplement but no luck there.
Avatar universal
Did your doc caution you to take the acidophilus at least ___ hours before or after the Flagyl?  I'm no pharmacist or chemist, but because acidophilus is bacterial, it will naturally be killed by ... antibiotics -- perhaps including Flagyl.

So ... if you're taking them at or near the same time, the acidophilus may be getting wiped out before it can do any good.

If your doc didn't address the issue, you might call the doc or your pharmacist or dig around online.

There is another kind of probiotic that is not bacterial (as acidophilus is), and so is not affected by antibiotics:  S. boulardii is the generic name, and a brand name for it is Florastor.  It is *yeast-based* and so is not affected by when you take antibiotics.

(My LLMD has his patients take Florastor for that very reason, but I had problems with it -- I'm apparently genetically yeast-sensitive, and ended up with a really bad systemic fungal infection that took some effort to get rid of.  My LLMD said he had never seen that happen before, and I believe him ... but it can happen, just fyi, fwiw.)

So if you plan to add herbs or other medicinals of any kind while you are on a treatment regimen, I'd be sure to check the possible interactions with both my doc AND my pharmacist to be on the safe side.
2109342 tn?1380912575
Not sure if 1 or all 3 has helped. I take Flagyl, Cipro & Macrobid. Can only take low doses, 1/day, but getting ready to increase the Flagyl a little, tomorrow.
2109342 tn?1380912575
I cannot take Florastor, either....because I have the same problem you do with yeast. My doctor told me to only take acidophilus. It's working great.

I've been following your directions with the meds, the past few months. I take the acidophilus 4+ hours before taking any meds. Also, space them all, at least 4+ hours apart. Because I eat dinner quite late at night (work schedule), I have no problem with this schedule.

I don't take herbs & won't take them right now. When I finally get to an LLMD & he/she prescribes them, I will give them a try. I would much rather have a professional tell me which herbs to take.,,,because we all react to any meds differently. Just safer that way.

My doctor didn't know to put me on a probiotic. I got that info from you, a few months ago. He totally agreed, when I asked about it, though, & told me to take acidophilus. He told me some are yeast-based & said I need to stay away from those, because of my history with yeast.

Also, I always talk to my doctor before trying anything on my own. He's so knowledgeable with meds & knows what I can/cannot take. He won't prescribe anything for me, if he feels I'll have problems.

Thanks to all of you here....and my doctor, I've improved so much. However, I'm not well, nor am I over this Lyme. I do realize I need to get to an LLMD soon, before I go back to where I was before.

Avatar universal
Ah, yes.  Apologies for repeating myself.  :)  

I would do exactly as you are doing given the circumstances.  I admire your grit and determination to get through all of this.  For some while, Lyme+ felt like a nightmare that I just couldn't wake up from, but focus and direction (and course corrections as seem prudent) are all that can be done, and you are doing exactly that.

Good for you, and I send you a gentle hug, with admiration for your focus and courage.  Stay in touch!
2109342 tn?1380912575
Can always use those hugs....thanks so much. Hugs back to you.

Black on thumbnail seems to be almost gone tonight. Don't know why, nor what I might have done to make it better. Feeling pretty good, the past few days....except for this fog.

Thanks so much for your continued help. Yes, I will keep in touch.
1763947 tn?1334058919
I am glad they seem to be working for you. I am starting some new thyroid meds so maybe my nails will improve.
Sending hugs too.
2109342 tn?1380912575
I'd be very interested to know how your new meds are working for you....and if they help your nails. Keep me posted.

Thanks so much for the Hugs. We can never get too many Hugs.
Hugs back to you.
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