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One more Sacrifice to IBD: My Nails

I look at my hands, I look at my feet and I am disgusted. I see others walk around and their nails are nicely grown. They have no black and blue covered toes. Because of my long steroid use for my Crohn’s Disease, I have developed a problem growing nails on my hands and toes.  I also have a black and blue toe nail that refuses to go away. So when did I notice it?

I noticed it when I first started my major dosage of Prednisone.

I was dealing with the weight gain, anxiety and constant hunger.  What I did not notice is how slowly my finger nails and toe nails would grow. I was always a nervous person, so constantly would bite my nails, and pick my toes. I know I know, too much information right? But I am just telling you the truth. I really forced myself eleven years ago to stop that nasty habit. Once I did, I figured, “Hey I will have nice toes and fingers.” Whelp that was not the case. I noticed that my finger nails grew in sideways, or not at all. If they did grow, they only grew to a certain length. My toes would do the same thing. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I was on a new medication that caused numbness in my extremities.


About five years ago, I started an immune-suppressive drug that had a major side effect. The numbness in a person’s extremities was very common. I was very nervous that my Crohn’s disease would cause this. I was off to the doctors to find some answers and options. After getting a few different options, I was told that this was a chance I needed to take to reach ultimate remission.

So let’s fast forward to present day.

My nails on my toes and feet barely grow. My finger tips are mainly dry and rough. My toes grow with a lot of hangnails and nastiness. Its not a great sight, and I get embarrassed when it becomes summer time. I work at a camp, and I wear sandals a lot. I hate when people see my feet. It’s just one more thing to make me self-conscious. I decided to go to a podiatrist to see if he could help me. After my evaluation last year, he told me to use a few home made remedies such as vitamin D oils. Then came the dresser.

When I was moving into my house last year, I was helping to move a dresser. I lost my handling, and dropped it on my big left toe. Not only did it hurt, it left the nail black and blue. Over a year later, I am still dealing with the black and blue toe nail. Its very ugly, and unattractive. Back to the podiatrist I went. He basically said that most patients have their new nail grow underneath, allowing the old nail to eventually fall off.  Apparently since my nails don’t grow at a normal speed, It might take a few years to fall off. A few years? I can’t wait that long. I want to have nice looking feet to walk around. I am already dealing with the scars from my surgeries.

I cannot get answers on how to get rid of the black and blue. Any ideas?  Come on Crohnies!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • olivia
    2 years ago

    I have the same problem. I treat myself to a pedicure every 3 weeks. I go to a very clean salon and don’t allow them to use a blade. My feet and nails are very healthy looking. I wear nail polish as well in the summer months only. I put cream on my feet. I also take vitamin b12, d and iron.

  • hikermama65
    2 years ago

    You may be b12 deficient and iron dificient. These have helped me immensely AND hemp oil!

  • rouse1
    2 years ago

    Haven’t been diagnosed yet, but I have all the systoms of crowns. Go Wed to c a gasterlogist. Why is it a family Dr just don’t seem to care. I have gotten so discouraged because they tell u all test come back k, but u still awful! I have become a hermit to my house because I never know what’s going to happen. Does anyone else feel that way?

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