Mayo Clinic Minute: Fingernails are clues to your health

Transcript

Viven Williams: Your fingernails are clues to your overall health. Many people develop lines or ridges from the cuticle to the tip.

Rachel Miest, M.D.: Those are actually completely fine and just a part of normal aging.

Viven Williams: But Dr. Rachel Miest says there are other nail changes you should not ignore that may indicate …

Rachel Miest, M.D.: … liver problems, kidney problems, nutritional deficiencies ...

Viven Williams: … and other issues. Here are six examples: No. 1 is pitting. This could be a sign of psoriasis. Two is clubbing. Clubbing happens when your oxygen is low and could be a sign of lung issues. Three is spooning. It can happen if you have iron-deficient anemia or liver disease. Four is called "a Beau's line." It's a horizontal line that indicates a previous injury or infection. Five is nail separation. This may happen as a result of injury, infection or a medication. And six is yellowing of the nails, which may be the result of chronic bronchitis.

For the Mayo Clinic News Network, I'm Vivien Williams.

March 13, 2019