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Onychomycosis, or fungal infection of nails (most often on the toes) affects approximately 12% of Americans, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Some people are genetically prone to it. Others, including swimmers and other athletes, are prone to onychomycosis because they go barefoot in public areas or because their feet are often damp. In its mild forms, nail fungus is merely a cosmetic problem, but over time it can cause toenails to grow abnormally and make it painful to walk.
Toenail fungus that causes ugly, discolored toenails can be treated effectively with a laser procedure. Toenail laser treatment offers a new alternative to oral medication, which carries a risk of liver damage, and a nail lacquer, which has poor efficacy.
Treatments typically take 30 to 45 minutes for up to 10 toes. Depending on the severity of the problem and the laser used, patients may need one to two treatments.