Freeman Cebu Lifestyle


SKINREPUBLIC - Jennifer Toledo-Tan M.D. - The Freeman

Dear Dr. Jen,

There is a growth near the nail of my big toe. No matter how often I trim it, it keeps coming back.  My nail has started to bulge and I am getting worried.  Now the toe next to it is showing the same growth.  I tried applying duofilm on it but I don’t want to use it too long.  What is the best way to treat this?


Dear Christine,

Warts can grow near the nails very easily when infected nippers or other nail paraphernalia have been used.  Warts are caused by a virus.  They can look like a callus at first but can grow gray or black spots over time.  Duofilm contains salicylic acid which may work for small warts.  However, once the wart has grown, it can get quite stubborn.

Cautery or laser are frequently used to take out the wart.  Liquid nitrogen can also be sprayed/applied on them. For the very stubborn ones, intralesional medicine can be injected directly into the wart and cause the wart to die gradually. This is most helpful for warts that have gone under the nail.

Some nail salons are notorious for transmitting these viruses if they don’t properly sterilize their instruments.  Use of high grade sterilizing equipment is essential in these salons and not just with your regular hot water, alcohol or UV light.

Since you can’t ensure that the nail tools have been properly disinfected, bring your own nippers, nail cutters and pushers next time.  I know it can be inconvenient but think of your poor nails in the long run!

* * *

Dear Dr. Jen,

My son has been having on and off skin allergies for many years.  Last week we went swimming and his allergies are coming back.  Our doctor has been advising us to use expensive soaps and lotions but his skin condition only improves sometimes. I pity looking at his skin.  There are many old scars from the rashes and the scratches. Is there a way to make his allergies disappear for good?



Dear Juliet,

Your son may have a skin condition called eczema, atopic dermatitis or skin asthma. This is very common and may cause uncontrollable scratching. Children with atopic dermatitis are very sensitive to dust, detergent, fragrances, salt water, chlorinated water and harsh chemicals that dry up their skin.  Once their skin becomes dry, it becomes very, very itchy!

This is when the soap and lotion comes into play.  Using mild soap and lotion (not necessarily expensive ones) are a must.  Soap and lotion containing strong fragrances will irritate skin.  Antibacterial chemicals, whitening ingredients, and scrubs will compound his skin problem.

To safeguard against recurrences, daily use of lotion so that skin remains moisturized constantly will help a lot.  It will help in the healing of old scars. It will help keep the itchiness at bay.

Yes it can be high maintenance.  Once you know how to prevent it from flaring up, it is easy as pie! Some children actually outgrow it in their puberty years.  And others just learn to avoid their triggers.

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