This name Leukonychia is not a name of any Chinese dish but it is a disease related to nails. It is a disease by which color of the nail changes partially or complete discoloration occurs. This disease is basically a genetic problem or can also be due to any systematic disorder. In this the nail cover has the same normal shell but it loses its clearness and leads to white in color, this white color is due to the presence of ‘parakeratotic cells’. These ‘parakeratotic cells’ have undeveloped bulky nucleus which includes ‘keratohyalins’ in it. The entire cell that contains keratohyalins will reflect light and due to which the transparent nail seems to be white in color.
Various types of Leukonychia
In this type of Leukonychia the nail becomes white in color. They are subdivided into two other types that is, total leukonychia and partial leukonychia. There are very rare cases of the people suffering from total Leukonychia in which the complete nail is of white color where as in the case of partial only two-third of the nail is in white in color and this is because of the delay in maturation of the keratin.
Total Leukonychia It is basically an autosomal dominant condition. The other circumstances that may lead to total Leukonychia are leprosy, typhoid, cytotoxic drugs and nail biting.
Partial Leukonychia It can be considered as a phase of total Leukonychia. The various other circumstances that may lead to partial Leukonychia are metastatic carcinoma, tuberculosis and leprosy. There are three other variants of partial Leukonychia they are longitudinal, transverse and punctate. In transverse Leukonychia the nail plate appears to be in multiple opaque colors. Transverse Leukonychia is mainly observed in women’s fingernail. This may be caused due to acute respiratory infections high fever, malaria or may be because of leprosy. Punctate is the most common type and can occur to normal human being. In this the color of the nail plate appears to have tiny opaque spots which disappear with time. Longitudinal Leukonychia is a small white line under the nail plate.
This disease appears when there is a discoloration in the nail due to change of the nail bed. There are three different types of pseudo Leukonychia Terry’s nails, Muehrcke’s nails and half and half nails. Terry nail's affects the whole nail except for a very small area. In this type the nail acquires two or three colors the greater part has white color and the other part has pink or brown color. In half and half nails the nail the greater part appears to be in dull white color and the smaller part in brownish color. In Muehrcke’s nails the nail has numerous transverse white bands.
Leukonychia can be cured by paying a timely attention towards it. Avoid using any chemicals on the affected area as it may further lead to allergy and can damage your nail beyond repair condition. Increase the quantity of grains, vegetables and nuts which will help to fight against the zinc deficiency and hence against Leukonychia.