Fingernails: how to recognize diabetes in nails?

By BreC Latest Reply 2015-01-30 03:16:50 -0600
Started 2015-01-29 05:43:55 -0600

For many years my fingernails grow slightly curled downward. I have read that it is a sign of different medical issues. I googled the term diabetes and fingernail problems and found this article. I don't believe everything I see on the internet so it's a maybe/maybe not for me.

Fingernails: how to recognize diabetes in nails?

Typical diabetes nail features are: (1) Opaque white nails with a dark band at the fingertip, (2) Yellowing of the nail bed, (3) Terry's nail, (4) onychomoycosis, (5) blue lunula, (6) redness in the proximal nail fold (paronychia), and a (7) flat- or spoon nails. Nail diseases are in a separate category from diseases of the skin. Although nails are a skin appendage, they have their own signs and symptoms which may relate to other medical conditions. Nail conditions that show signs of infection or inflammation require medical assistance and cannot be treated at a beauty parlor. Deformity or disease of the nails (diabetes nails) may be referred to as onychosis.
The most common (finger)nail diseases:

The most common nail disease are: Onychocryptosis (= ingrown fingernails), Onychodystrophy (nail deformation), Onychogryposis (ram's-horn nail), Onycholysis (loosening of the nail bed), Onychomadesis (falling off), Onychomycosis (contagious infection), and Koilonychia (nail curves upwards) - source: Wikipedia.

14 replies

valentine lady
valentine lady 2015-01-30 03:16:50 -0600 Report

Hi BreC
I really took a good look at my nails. By my nails ,I am not a
diabetic. Think I will start on biotin though, they peel easy. Thanks Lou for the tip. VL

jayabee52 2015-01-29 20:12:48 -0600 Report

I hadn't heard of many of the problems with nails so I chose to look up "Terry's nails" One of the articles which were presented to me was a slideshow from Mayo clinic. I went through the slideshow and got a pictoral representation as well as a brief description of the condition. You can see it here ~

God's best to all y'all


Type1Lou 2015-01-29 09:32:06 -0600 Report

Several years back I posted a discussion to ask for help with nails that were splitting vertically. One response advised me to start taking biotin which I have been doing ever since. I've always had soft nails but the splitting was somthing new back then. I also had vertical ridges along the nails and that was where the splits were occuring. The biotin has virtually eliminated the nail splitting…thanks to a reply here on Diabetic Connect. I do have the dark band at the fingertips…never knew it was a symptom of diabetes…showing that we're never too old to learn something new. Thanks for the post!

Pegsy 2015-01-29 14:30:37 -0600 Report

Just weighing in on this for comparison with others…my thumb nails have vertical ridges because they were both badly smashed in car doors when I was a kid. All the rest of my nails have no issues.

sweetslover 2015-01-29 07:30:29 -0600 Report

Boy, I wish I had known this a few years ago. I probably would have diagnosed sooner before some of my complications occurred. Thanks for sharing.

suecsdy 2015-01-29 07:22:27 -0600 Report

I have noticed recently, more ridges on my nails than before, but given my other problems, I don't think I can blame diabetes. A lot of things have improved since my bg is under control.

DrJohn 2015-01-29 06:58:17 -0600 Report

This is the first I ever heard of this. Opaque white finger nails usually indicates a yeast infection.


BreC 2015-01-29 08:32:04 -0600 Report

Like I said, I don't believe everything I read on the internet but thought it would be interesting to share. My mother always said she could look into my eyes and know when I was getting sick because they would cross more but hadn't heard about the fingernail thing until a few years ago when I noticed my fingernails curling downward.

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