Last Updated: November 29. 2011 1:00AM Dr. Paul Donohue: to Your Health
Dear Dr. Donohue: Third letter, same request. please tell me how to get rid of fungus under a toenail.
Dear B.K.: Toenail fungus is prevalent among older people, and often, the infected person has no idea where he or she picked it up. the big toe’s nail is the one the fungus seems to like the best. the nail turns yellow, becomes thick and brittle, and has crumbly material extending from its edge under the nail to its base. the nail doesn’t usually hurt or itch. It just looks awful.
Treatment for nail fungus is less than a huge success. Penlac (ciclopirox) Nail Lacquer is applied directly to the nail. the cure rate isn’t impressive.
Oral medicines have the best results, but the results aren’t something to write home about. Further, they’re expensive, and often are not covered by insurance. one such medicine is Sporanox (itraconazole). It’s taken twice a day for one week of each month, for three or four months.
Some people opt for nail removal.
If the nail isn’t bothersome, if it’s not leading to infections of the toe or foot and if a person isn’t a diabetic, many decide to live at peace with the infected nail. It isn’t likely to shorten life.
Dear Dr. Donohue: my husband died of hepatic encephalopathy, which you wrote about. his doctors performed a liver biopsy, which showed cirrhosis. later I read about Tylenol causing liver damage. Due to a neuropathy he had, he was taking a lot of Tylenol and some sinus meds with Tylenol in them. I think Tylenol killed his liver. this is my curiosity and perhaps a warning to others not to use excessive amounts of Tylenol.
Dear H.W.: Tylenol (acetaminophen) has been safely used by a huge number of people for decades. It’s harmless and effective when used according to the instructions on the bottle. recently, the manufacturer lowered the maximum daily dose of Extra Strength Tylenol to 3,000 mg from 4,000 mg. changes in other Tylenol products may be forthcoming.
I don’t know if your husband’s liver damage resulted from too much of this drug. Add up his total daily intake from all brands of medicine containing acetaminophen.
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