The best fungal nail treatments

The best fungal nail treatments

Posted 21 Apr

Fungal nail infections occur when a fungus has infected and penetrated your nail. It can affect the physical appearance of your nail, however it is rarely associated with pain and won’t have a major impact on your quality of life. Nevertheless, they are a pesky, irritating nail condition to resolve.

In this article, we will highlight some of the best fungal nail treatments currently on the market. 

Photodynamic Antimicrobial Therapy (PACT) 

We recommend PACT as a safe and reliable treatment for fungal nails. This treatment uses light interaction with photosensitive agents (PACT gel) and oxygen to penetrate the microorganism's cell wall, killing off the fungal cells. PACT kills off these cells without causing harm to the surrounding healthy tissue. 

It usually only takes three sessions to successfully treat the fungal nail with this treatment option however the podiatrist will give you a more accurate time frame upon analysing the severity of the fungal nail. 

PACT is currently the best fungal nail treatment on the market. At The Feet People we have seen incredible results when using this treatment to effectively get rid of fungal toenails. 

PACT machine treating a fungal nail

Oral Medications

Oral medications are another form of treatment that show successful results, however they can have adverse effects. on liver function and when interacting with other medications. 

Your podiatrist will refer you to a GP if you wish to seek an oral medication route. This treatment has up to a 85% success rate however there can be many side effects ranging from; headaches, dizziness, stomach and bowel problems, and rashes. It can also impact liver function and interact with a number of other medications.  

If taken, your doctor will commonly order a blood test every 12 weeks as your liver function needs to be monitored before, during and after treatment. You can discuss how this will impact your body further with your GP or Podiatrist. 

Home remedies 

Over-the-counter topical nail paints including ciclopirox nail lacquer, amorolfine nail lacquer (Loceryl) and Canesten are a common treatment for minor fungal nail infections. The nail should be filed down before the chosen lacquer is painted on, allowing the treatment to diffuse into the fungal nail. You can find these at most local chemists or pharmacies, however the efficacy rate is low at approximately 8-10%. It also takes upwards of 6-24 months to treat or notice any visible change at all. 

As a fungal infection is contagious, it is recommended that you combine this form of treatment with a podiatry appointment every 6 weeks. During this appointment, the podiatrist can file down the nail using sterile instruments to avoid cross contamination to other nails. 

Canestan Fungal Nail Lacquer

If you do a quick internet search for ‘fungal nail treatments’ you may come across some questionable results including the daily application of tea tree oil, or daily vinegar soaks. These treatments have no evidence to back their effectiveness so we do not recommend attempting this form of treatment. 


In treating the fungal nail infection, there is no 100% guarantee of a complete resolution. However, the success rate is significantly higher if you treat it in the mild or early stages, and when it is impacting the least amount of nails. 

Key things to note when treating the fungal nail 

Are you showing symptoms of a fungal nail? Book to see one of our podiatrists to get an accurate diagnosis and to talk through your treatment options.

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