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Chloronychia: green nail syndrome caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa in elderly persons

Authors Chiriac A, Brzezinski P, Foia L, Marincu I

Received 23 October 2014

Accepted for publication 11 November 2014

Published 14 January 2015 Volume 2015:10 Pages 265—267

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/CIA.S75525

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Walker

Anca Chiriac,1–3 Piotr Brzezinski,4 Liliana Foia,5 Iosif Marincu6

1Apollonia University, 2Nicolina Medical Center, Department of Dermatology, 3“P.Poni” Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry, Iasi, Romania; 4Department of Dermatology, 6th Military Support Unit, Ustka, Poland; 5Grigore T. Popa University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Iasi, Romania; 6Victor Babes University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timisoara, Romania

Abstract: Green nails, also known as chloronychia or green nail syndrome, are characterized by green discoloration of the nail plate (greenish-yellow, greenish-brown, greenish-black), proximal chronic non-tender paronychia, and distolateral onycholysis. The cause is Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection of the nail plate in persons whose hands are constantly exposed to water, soaps, and detergents or are subject to mechanical trauma, especially in the elderly. Green or black coloration of the nails should raise suspicion for Pseudomonas infection and be treated with an oral quinolone (ciprofloxacin), particularly in aged patients. We present three cases of green nails in elderly persons.

Keywords: chloronychia, green nail syndrome, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, elderly

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