YANMD, but any insight as to what might be going on with my finger?
November 17, 2016 9:15 PM   Subscribe

The lateral nail fold of my middle finger has been raw and cracking for maybe 8 months now. I'm not sure what's wrong and no remedy has seemed to work so far.

Pictures here: http://imgur.com/a/hXlCp

This has been going on for 8 months and I can't seem to fix it. I've tried bag balm, lotion, neosporin, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal covered with a bandage at night. The skin cracks open and sometimes bleeds. One weird thing is that a small piece of skin grows out of the side of the nail bed and just sticks out -- I hypothesize that maybe my skin forgot how to grow there and is still growing but not properly?

I have an appointment scheduled with my doctor next month and I will ask him about this but I'm not confident he'll have a solution. I imagine I'll be passed off to a dermatologist with a 6 month wait and then I'll be told to put anti-bacterial and anti-fungal cream on it. My girlfriend showed a picture of it to a dermatologist preceptor while on rotation and the preceptor suggested 8 weeks of anti-bacterial and anti-fungal cream. I've been doing that probably 6 nights a week for the last month but on the 7th night I forget to put it on the the next day the finger is cracked open and bloody again.

YANMD, but do you have any ideas as to what this might be or suggestions as to how I can get this to go away?
posted by masters2010 to Health & Fitness (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
My mother had this, and it spread to most of her fingers. Her primary care doc here in the US was useless and put her on expensive medications from a compounding pharmacy that did not help. She was in a lot of pain for about a year. She then went to Europe to visit family and saw a dermatologist, who did proper testing, including cultured a sample from her fingers, figured out that it was fungal in origin, but also which exact fungus was responsible, put her on a specific anti-fungal oral treatment, and it cured her. It may be that your antifungal treatment is insufficiently targeted given what you have. Insist on testing and drugs that target this specific fungus.
posted by Atrahasis at 9:36 PM on November 17, 2016 [3 favorites]

Well, I think it is possibly a wart. Try wart medication or, as in my case when I had something that looked much as yours, soon after a doctor identified it as a wart, it went away on its own. This was after a couple of years of it bothering me.
posted by bz at 9:41 PM on November 17, 2016

I think a dermatologist would prescribe a steroid cream or ointment like Desonide rather than have you continue in the antibacterial/antifungal cycle. That should heal it up pretty quickly (though depending on the cause it could certainly recur). It's possible the doctor will prescribe you this without having to wait for a dermatologist.
posted by dayintoday at 4:45 AM on November 18, 2016

I get this on several fingers. I've been told that it's one of the effects of my eczema. I don't have a long-term cure because it recurs whenever I have an eczema flair up, but I have developed a technique to close it up pretty quickly: fill the 'crack' with neosporin and bandage over it to keep the ointment in place overnight. The next morning slather it with steroid cream and bandaid it up again. Back and forth for a day or two usually closes it. Either cream just on its own will not.
posted by DSime at 6:09 AM on November 18, 2016

have you tried liquid bandage on it? Also, my dad had the same problem and had good luck with this balm that contains beeswax.
posted by dawkins_7 at 8:03 AM on November 18, 2016

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