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black toe nails

kit kat's picture
kit kat
Posts: 56
Joined: Aug 2010

I finished my 3rd round of chemo, I looked down at my toe nail and the left one looks black at the cuticle. The right one has a black spot. Does this mean it is about to fall off. And is there something I can do now to save it? Can I use a nail hardener?

sweetvickid's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: Nov 2009

they let go at the cuticle bed so my pharmacy told me. I lost everyone be my big toe nails. Which were the worse looking ones!

jackiejhm's picture
Posts: 169
Joined: Feb 2010

I just trimmed them as far back as I could...and wore socks to hide them. It's yucky, but, they do grow back. Hang in there! xoxo, Jackie

carkris's picture
Posts: 4554
Joined: Aug 2009

I got some brown spots on my big toe nails, and fingers. none of my toe nails fell out.

VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9085
Joined: Aug 2009

they do grow back, it takes months! It's an ugly side effort to chemo drugs taxol, or taxotere ..and some others.

Please protect your toes with cotton attire (socks), after nail falls off ... don't pick it off - be care when wearing closed shoes .. as your nail bead is raw, and may bleed by the pressure of hitting against the top of closed shoes.

Good Luck .. tea tree oil, or aloe vera can help before the nail falls off.

Vicki Sam

chenheart's picture
Posts: 5180
Joined: Apr 2003

So sorry this is happening to you~ it happened to me too! I lost a few toenails along the chemo trail~ it is not unusual at all. And just as babying the hair on our heads can't stop it from falling out, ditto toenails. The reason is (in a simple nutshell) is that this is an internal reaction~nothing external can change what is happening inside of our bodies. It is another indignity of this damnable beast~ but also a temporary one!


chriskaput's picture
Posts: 109
Joined: Jul 2010

I was told by my onc. to put your hands and feel in ice while you are having your treatments that it would help the chemo not reach your finger tips and possible help with any numbness you may have. I have yet to try it, I have nail pain now while on Taxol but noindication of them falling off or cuticle issues. Two nails are discolored but I just used a dark nailpolish to cover them.
good luck and all the best!
Chris, NY

cavediver's picture
Posts: 607
Joined: Apr 2010

I get the dark spots on my toenails...and on the large toe it gets totally dark....but so far they have not lifted or fallen off. I have finished 7 rounds of TAC chemo, so I think they are staying on.....just look not so attractive. But that is a minor side effect for me....my fingernails just get a lot of ridges and 'moons'... no pain, so I ignore both these issues. But, I understand if they do fall out....they will grow back! As long as the cancer does not come back,..it is worth it... right?!!!!

VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9085
Joined: Aug 2009

Thank you for that suggestions ...

Vicki Sam

Hubby's picture
Posts: 325
Joined: Apr 2010

Donna wanted to use the ice for her feet and hands, and her oncologist does not want her to. He says that it hasn't been studied, and he doesn't want to restrict the chemo drugs from going anyplace in the body.

I guess he thinks a cancer cell may be hiding out in her little toe or something.


cindycflynn's picture
Posts: 1133
Joined: Oct 2009

when I asked her about wearing a "cool cap", which is basically an ice cap you can wear on your head that is supposed to keep your hair from falling out. I'd heard about it from a friend whose sister went through chemo and she never lost her hair, but when I asked my onco about it she said that she wanted to make sure the chemo wasn't restricted from any part of my body, so I just dealt with the hair loss - it is finally coming back!

Mama G
Posts: 763
Joined: Nov 2009

I just covered it with nail polish and forgot about it until the polish wore off. It doesn't seem to be in any danger of falling off, though. It's been about 6 months....

linpsu's picture
Posts: 747
Joined: Mar 2010

Mine didn't start to fall off until after I had completed all 8 rounds of chemo (4 A/C & 4 Taxol) . I had some black spots prior, though.

cahjah75's picture
Posts: 2631
Joined: Jun 2010

checks my nails every week when I go for CBC evaluations. So far my nails are still growing well enough that I've had to cut them. Of course, I just had my 2nd chemo today so who knows what will happen tomorrow! If they turn black, I'll deal with it. So sorry to hear you're dealing with this though.
{{hugs}} Char

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