The Yellow Nail Syndrome consists of changes in the nail color and consistency that affects both the fingernails and toenails. It may be associated with a number of underlying conditions.


Nail changes:

(1) affects both toenails and fingernails

(2) color change, ranging from diffuse pale yellow to yellow to dark yellow-green

(3) arrested nail growth

(4) excessive hardness to the nails, thickening

(5) absent cuticles

(6) transverse overcurvature

(7) transverse ridging

(8) paronychia common

(9) secondary oncholysis common

(10) loss of lunulae


The idiopathic yellow nail syndrome may show the combination of:

(1) lymphedema of the extremities (due to congenital lymphatic hypoplasia) and

(2) respiratory tract symptoms (pleural effusions, bronchitis, bronchiectasis, recurrent pulmonary infections, sinusitis, chyloptysis)


The yellow nail syndrome may:

(1) occur as a paraneoplastic syndrome (nail changes may regress with successful tumor treatment)

(2) be drug-related

(3) be AIDS-related


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