Top 20 Doctor insights on: Black streaks on fingernails

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Fingernails (Definition)

Fingernails are the hard coverings at the end of fingertips. Nails are made out of a protein called keratin. They function to protect the fingertip and to increase sensitivity of touch. Good hand hygiene and nail care is important to prevent bacterial ...Read more


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What causes black vertical lines under fingernails? I am asking for a 66 yr. Old male.

What causes black vertical lines under fingernails? I am asking for a 66 yr. Old male.

Blood clots: Tiny blood clots, usually broken off from heart valves then float to the end arteries of the fingertips and get caught in the capillaries of the nail bed. They are not dangerous in and of themselves, but could be reflective of a heart problem. ...Read more

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One of my fingernails is turning black and they all have ridges.. ...what could be causing this?

One of my fingernails is turning black and they all have ridges.. ...what could be causing this?

Nail issues: The best thing would be to have it checked out as it could be anything from fungal infection to injury or other disease. If you have ridges it could also be fungal infection but it is difficult to say without looking at it. See your doctor. If it developed acutely it could be an injury but you would have known it since it would be painful to have it bleed and have the blood underneath turn dark. ...Read more

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I have a small single black line on the tip of my fingernail. It looks like a small splinter...What could it be?

Splinter hemorrhage: It's called a splinter hemorrhage. If you only have them occasionally, don't worry about it. ...Read more

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I've noticed small/thin black lines keep appearing under the tips of my fingernails over the past few days. What could this be from?

I've noticed small/thin black lines keep appearing under the tips of my fingernails over the past few days. What could this be from?

Splinters: Thin longitudinal black lines under fingernails can be what doctors call "splinters" & can reflect tiny blood clot emboli that get caught there, where there are end arteries & capillaries. Such tiny clots end up there after being generated inside left chambers of heart. Cardiologist exam indicated & urgently if dizzy, feverish, chest pain, irregular heart beats or shortness of breath. ...Read more

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Hi, I am scared, my fingernails have changed colour, I did used to have black under my fingernails and I hope it is just fungi, please help me?

Don't be scared: Have you family make you an appointment to see dermatologist to diagnose. Nails can change color for many reasons, and usually nail fungus is yellow and white ...Read more

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One of my fingernails is black by the cuticle and on the front. It doesn't wash off. Is it a fungus?

One of my fingernails is black by the cuticle and on the front. It doesn't wash off. Is it a fungus?

Not necessarily: If it appeared quickly, like over night, then it most probably is trauma. It may also be a mole growing in the area or a fungus. Smokers may get some black in the cuticle and nail.
If it lasts for more than two weeks, then go to your dermatologist to have it diagnosed. ...Read more

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I have a bunch of very small black dots inside my fingernails and nail beds. I'm a big nail biter so I look at my nails a lot throughout the day. They just appeared one day and I can't get them to go away.

I have a bunch of very small black dots inside my fingernails and nail beds. I'm a big nail biter so I look at my nails a lot throughout the day. They just appeared one day and I can't get them to go away.

Splinter hemorrhage?: These may be what are called splinter hemorrhages. They can be dot-like but also needle-like. I don't think biting has anything to do with it. It would be worth having your doctor or a dermatologist look at them. ...Read more

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I work around chemicals and acid and I got some of it under my fingernails, also smashed the same finger. And its very painful and black/yellow?

I work around chemicals and acid and I got some of it under my fingernails, also smashed the same finger. And its very painful and black/yellow?

Clean and protect: A thorough cleaning with water/soap including under the nails is important. If you've also injured the finger, protect it in a splint and allow it to heal. ...Read more

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My scalp has been really itchy recently and every time I scratch it, white and black specks appear on my fingernails. What is it and how treated?

My scalp has been really itchy recently and every time I scratch it, white and black specks appear on my fingernails. What is it and how treated?

Dermatitis: The scales are likely from skin scales (older one tends to be darker). You need to find what is causing the itching. As a starter, the hair preparation used (especially something introduced recently). But there are also other causes for scalp itching. - consider a derm consult if you can't solve the puzzle yourself. ...Read more

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I have a small black spot under my thumb fingernail, what is it?

Have it evaluated: Have it evaluated. It is often nothing but it may be a more serious condition such as a melanoma. ...Read more

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My mom's toenails and fingernails are black. Is there anything that will clear this? She weeks @ a hotel where they also use chemicals

Shoes fit?: Could be related to proper fitting of her shoes? Always have 1 finger width from the edge of the shoe to the longest toe. If toenails and fingernails are getting discolored you might want to have her see her doctor for raynaud's disease. Disease. Http://www. Nhlbi. Nih. Gov/health/health-topics/topics/raynaud/. ...Read more

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Hello, I am an Asian girl with fair skin and I have the vertical black lines on my fingernails and toenails. What does this mean? Thanks.

Hello, I am an Asian girl with fair skin and I have the vertical black lines on my fingernails and toenails. What does this mean? Thanks.

Chemical reaction: Vertical lines in bot finger and toenails could be due to some chemical that was ingested. Horizontal lines are more common and again caused by a drug or something ingested. ...Read more

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I have a thin black vertical line along my entire fingernail that grows after trimming it, but doesn't change in width. Could this be cancer?

See a dermatologist: You need to visit a dermatologist to evaluate the area. It could be blood underneath your nail cause by trauma when trimming the nails or fungus. You may need a biopsy of the nail to make sure that this is not a melanoma. This is the most deadly of all the skin cancers. ...Read more

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I started seeing black lines running down my fingernails. Between 2-3 on 4 different nails. Should I go to Skin and cancer center?

I started seeing black lines running down my fingernails. Between 2-3 on 4 different nails. Should I go to Skin and cancer center?

Get checked now: If these appeared suddenly and there was no trauma get checked now since it may be a sign of a serious heart condition. ...Read more