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Discolored nail that is pale and gray.

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My fingernails have been looking really off color for the past couple of months now, they are a sort of pale grey/white color from the bottom of my nail to about three quarters of the way up. Some of the nails also feel like they have horizontal line bumped out about half way up the nail. I don't know if this would be relative but my hands also feel very cold a lot even when I am feeling warm.

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Category: Family Physician-GP
 21 Doctors Online

It seems that you have anemia.

Anemia is the decreased concentration of hemoglobin. It presents and is diagnosed by pale finger nails with stripes. The pale finger nails with the bottom part of the nail being paler are typical of anemia. Anemia is a very common problem in girls in adolescence because of loss of blood in menstruation coupled with increased need for hemoglobin to supply oxygen for the growth spurt. The oxygen is needed for nutrition of the cells and in anemia there is decreased nutrition to the extremities and hence the extremities feel cold and weak.

I would recommend the following-

1)Consult your physician and get a hemoglobin concentration tested. Also get a complete blood count to check for other causes of anemia.

2)Take ferrous sulphate tablets 150 mf to increase the iron content in the blood and aid in increase in the concentration of hemoglobin. Iron sulphate tablets are known to cause black stools and constipation hence it’s advisable to use a laxative.

3)Eat a good balanced diet with good portion of proteins carbohydrates and vitamins. Consume diet rich in green leafy vegetables and milk. A diet rich in iron can improve anemia.

Thank you.


Dr. John Monheit
Category: Family Physician-GP
Experience: 
Residecny: North Colorado Family Medicine
Medical School: The Chicago Medical Center
Dr. John Monheit and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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