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Useful Diagnostic Techniques

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Nail Disorders
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Clinical assessment can involve a combination of noninvasive and invasive examination techniques that are easy to perform and facilitate diagnosis.

The tools needed for a correct nail examination are easily available in any dermatological office: nail clippers, dermatoscope , curettes, Petri dishes or a paper envelope for mycological samples, and tools for nail biopsy. Other diagnostic examinations, such as X-ray and ultrasonography , are not expensive and are performed in any hospital. In contrast, it is not easy to have an MRI of the distal digit, as several radiological centers do not have the MRI with small dedicated surface coils.

When dealing with chronic nail disorders, which need periodic evaluation, it is advisable to take photographs of the disease at any follow-up visit, in order to better monitor its evolution and response to therapy. Photographs should be taken in a standardized way: the easiest is to take a picture of the 10 digits, one close to the other, and of the single photograph of each diseased nails.

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Piraccini, B.M. (2014). Useful Diagnostic Techniques. In: Nail Disorders. Springer, Milano.

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, Milano

  • Print ISBN: 978-88-470-5303-8

  • Online ISBN: 978-88-470-5304-5

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