Body Parts: Upper Limbs
Medical Subjects: Skin

What Is Leukonychia

What is leukonychia?

Leukonychia, also known as leukonychia, leukonychia, belongs to one of the nail color, is due to incomplete deck keratosis, performance for different white patches on the nail or stripes; According to the area, it is divided into punctate leukonychia, linear leukonychia, partial leukonychia and full leukonychia. Different types of causes differ and can be caused by trauma, infection, genetic or systemic disease.

Punctate leukonychia is caused by minor trauma and is usually seen in children; Hereditary panleukonychia is rare. Linear, partial leukonychia is usually caused by other diseases and is common in adults. Leukonychia itself has no effect on the human body. If it is caused by the primary disease, we need to actively treat the primary disease.


What Is The Cause Of Leukonychia

What causes leukonychia?

Different types of leukonychia, the reason is different:

  • Spotted leukonychia: Common in perfectly normal people.

  • It is mostly seen in children and caused by trauma or finger bite. There are also what is inappropriately called nail leukoplakia and nail bug spots, but they are not related to children's parasitic diseases and trace element deficiency.

  • It can also be caused by trauma, fungal infection, syphilis, and systemic diseases such as typhoid fever, nephritis, and trichinosis. Two-handed fingers may appear symmetrically (symmetrical sexual perception leukonychia).

  • Linear leukonychia: The etiology may be hereditary, damaging or systemic.

  • If it occurs in a small number of nails, it is due to proximal perinail trauma affecting nail matrix, and it is mostly caused by improper or excessive nail trimming.

  • The appearance of regular white horizontal lines in all nails was characteristic of arsenic or thallium poisoning; A similar horizontal line is seen in niacin deficiency.

  • The longitudinal white line of the nail plate or nail bed is typical of follicular keratosis.

  • It can also be found in other systemic diseases such as HIV infection, Kawasaki disease, nicotinic acid deficiency, renal failure, heart failure, Hodgkin's lymphoma, sickle cell anemia, and malaria. Or with drug, such as chemotherapy drugs.

  • Partial leukonychia: It occurs due to trauma, tuberculosis, nephritis, compound segmental pain syndrome, Hodgkin's lymphoma, chilblain, metastatic carcinoma, leprosy, or it is idiopathic (the cause of which is partly unknown).

  • Terry  leukonychia: In Terry leukonychia, the distal 1–2 mm of the nail is normally pink, while the entire nail plate or proximal end of the nail is white because of a change in the nail bed. This change occurs in 25% of hospitalized patients and is most common in cirrhosis, chronic congestive heart failure, adult diabetes, and elderly patients.

  • Semi-armour: Semi-armour is white on the proximal part of the nail and red, pink, or brown on the distal part, with a clear boundary between the two. At least one nail abnormality is present in 76% of hemodialysis patients and 56% of renal transplant patients, most commonly heminails, and can occur in 20% of hemodialysis patients. Patients on hemodialysis are more likely to have missing nails for half a month, bleeding from a ruptured deck, and heminails, but leukonychia is more common in transplant patients.

  • All white nails: May be autosomal dominant. A syndrome consisting of panleukonychia, multiple sebaceous cyst and kidney calculi has been reported to occur in several generations. It has also been reported that all-white nails are accompanied by deafness or accompanied by concave nails. However, it was most commonly inherited solely as panleukonychia, with all of her nails being ceramic-like opalescent due to a phospholipase C-δ1(PLCD1) gene mutation.

  • It can also be complicated by typhoid fever, leprosy, cirrhosis of the liver, ulcerative colitis, nail biting or after application of emetine, complex segmental pain syndrome, cytostatic drugs, and trichinosis.

  • Contact with nitric acid, nitrite, and concentrated sodium chloride solution can cause a whitening.

  • Fungal leukonychia frequently involves the nails, which are white when accompanied by nail separation and hypokeratosis.

Is leukonychia contagious?

Most leukonychia are not contagious. Except for leukonychia caused by infectious diseases such as typhoid fever, leprosy, malaria, tuberculosis and fungal leukonychia, such infectious diseases are mainly transmitted through contact and droplets and need to be isolated and managed according to the primary disease.

Can leukonychia be inherited?

There are genetic causes of leukonychia, and one of the causes of leukonychia is phospholipase C-δ1(PLCD1) gene mutation. It belongs to autosomal dominant inheritance.


What Are The Symptoms Of Leukonychia

What are the symptoms of leukonychia?

That is, the change of nail deck color, white patches or stripes with different areas can be seen by naked eyes. It can be divided into four types: punctate leukonychia, linear leukonychia, partial leukonychia and full leukonychia.

  • Spot leukonychia: Spot white spots can be seen on nails; It can appear symmetrically.

  • Linear leukonychia: There are horizontal or vertical white stripes on nails, one or several stripes with different widths.

How To Check For Leukonychia

Do you need to check when diagnosing leukonychia?

Leukonychia can be diagnosed according to typical white spots, patches or streaks of nails.

Different types of leukonychia, especially linear, partial and all leukonychia, accompanied by other abnormal symptoms usually suggest that there are primary diseases that lead to leukonychia, and they need to go to the corresponding departments for treatment, examination and treatment.


How To Prevent Leukonychia

How to prevent leukonychia?

There is no harm in leukonychia itself. However, there are many primary diseases causing leukonychia, and there are no specific preventive measures.

  • If uncomfortable symptoms are found everyday, timely treatment and active cooperation are recommended to prevent the disease from aggravating to leukonychia.

  • Pay attention to personal and environmental health, wash your hands frequently, family members have infection lead to leukonychia, need active treatment and correct isolation, can prevent or reduce infectious diseases.

  • Hereditary leukonychia has no effect on human body and does not affect pregnancy preparation or pregnancy.

  • If it is traumatic punctiform leukonychia, pay attention to avoid or correct the behavior of finger bite.


How To Treat Leukonychia

Which department should leukonychia go to?

Dermatology, general internal medicine.

How is leukonychia treated?

Leukonychia itself does not require treatment. However, according to different types and etiologies, diseases of dermatological-related causes are excluded or treated by dermatologists; His primary disease was then evaluated, diagnosed and treated by physicians.


What Should Patients With Leukonychia Pay Attention To In Life

What should the patient of leukonychia notice on diet?

For leukonychia without primary disease, there is no special taboo on diet, and a healthy and balanced diet is enough.

  • Pay attention to less salt when cooking, less oil, less high salt seasoning, eat less pickled vegetables, pickled meat, etc.;

  • Don't only eat refined rice and white flour as the main food; coarse grains, miscellaneous beans, potatoes, and pumpkins can be used to replace some of the main food.

  • Reasonable collocation of meat and vegetable, meat preferred chicken, duck, fish and other white meat, eat less fat, eggs, milk is an important source of protein and other nutrients;

  • If you are a vegetarian, you can eat more beans and soy products to supplement protein;

  • Eat more fruits and vegetables;

  • Try not to drink.

What should we pay attention to in life?

For leukonychia without primary disease and without special precautions in life, it is enough to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Do not smoke; Insist on exercise, don't sit for a long time, avoid overweight and obesity, exercise 3 ~ 5 times a week, 30 minutes each time, the combination of aerobic exercise and strength exercise, moderate intensity is not excessive; • Get plenty of sleep every day, whether you go to bed early or late; When mental stress, emotional tension, learn to self-regulation.

What does leukonychia disease have primary disease to need to notice?

If the leukonychia caused by the primary disease is confirmed, the daily routine should follow the dietary and activity requirements of the primary disease.

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