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Ask NURSE KAREN Your Own Question
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 211
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My nails "might" be classified as terry's nails as I have a

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Hello! My nails "might" be classified as terry's nails as I have a reddish hued band arching over my thumb lunae, off-white cream colored (not really white) in the center of the nail bed and pinkish-reddish bands at the top. I do not have lunae on any other nails except my thumbs and pointer fingers. I started taking HCL with pepsin for digestion and digestive enzymes about 1.5 years ago as digestion is not great. I am 5'7 and 125 pounds, never have smoked, don't drink (very occasional glass of red wine), eat organically with ample fruits, veggies, whole grains, legume (lentils, beans), red meat only once every 2-3 months, etc. I need to exercise more for sure but have a high needs 16 month old so it's difficult. What are your thoughts on my nails? Thank you!!!!

Hi. Can you tell me how long you have had this problem? Did it start after you began the digestion regimen? How did your nails look prior to you noticing that they seemed to have changed in appearance?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

My husband remembers them being like this for quite a few years but I just noticed this myself maybe 2 years ago now and I started the digestion regimen shortly thereafter. I'd also like to add that I don't drink alcohol but I did quite a bit in college (normal college student amount). I never paid attention to my nails before recently. I also take a standardized extract of milk thistle seed, which I know is good for the liver and have been taking that for at least a year. Thank you!

Thanks for the information. While you are absolutely correct, nail discoloration, change in nail color and texture could all indicate there may be a problem with your health. As it sounds like you have researched, liver problems are one thing that it may indicate, also kidney and circulation problems, as well as, diabetes or other things.
Now with that being said, I doubt very seriously that you have any of those things. The reason I believe this is because you KNOW you have had the nail coloration issue for at least 2 years; any type of liver or kidney failure, circulatory issues or diabetes would have already caused you to have additional symptoms---the kind of symptoms that you would not be able to miss! You would have experienced significant symptoms that could include color changes in skin and eyes, nausea, vomiting, uncontrolled thirst, hunger, and urination or inability to urinate, unexplained weight loss, shortness of breath, severe headaches along with a long list of possible other things.
While it is impossible to 'diagnose' online, I feel safe in telling you that unless you begin to experience any unusual symptoms, the nail discoloration is nothing to worry about. Of course, if the nails do change in color or texture and/or you have unusual symptoms you should see a doctor right away!
If you have questions, please ask!
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you! One other quick thing to add is that I have developed vertical ridges, most hardly anything to write about and one nail has a double ridge that is medium in "severity". Would that factor in?

I doubt it is any cause for concern. Vertical ridges are pretty common and they can become more prominent as we age. It sounds like you eat an adequate diet, if your eating habits have not changed since you had your baby (16 months old?) then I am sure your nutrition is adequate---they check you very closely for iron, etc.. while pregnant. Iron or vitamin deficiency would be the leading (problem) cause of nail ridges.
Because you state you have digestion problems, it is possible that you could have an actual ABSORPTION problem (not able to absorb nutrients from your food), but, again, those things usually cause other symptoms and certainly would be picked up during pregnancy. if it is a concern you can try vitamin supplements.
Should you develop horizontal ridges, you should see your doctor, as those are not a "normal" finding.
NURSE KAREN and 3 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Hi Lisa,
I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Hope things are working out for you. Let me know if I can help you in the future!!