Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses black lines under fingernails which may be a sign of melanoma

Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses black lines under fingernails which may be a sign of melanoma

You may come across a skin imperfection or mark that you think is harmless but could be a sign of something more serious. One example of this is black or dark colored lines under fingernails which could be benign or a sign of something more serious. Dr. Joel Schlessinger discussed the issue with ScarySymptoms.com in the article “Normal Black Line Under Fingernail vs. Melanoma Streak.”

Dark lines can be caused by skin conditions such as psoriasis or injury, explains Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

“Splinters or dark streaks under nails can occur when microscopic areas of bleeding happen and allow blood to settle under the nail,” Dr. Joel Schlessinger says. “This also occurs in psoriasis where nail deformities are common.”

Discoloration caused by blood under the nails or a condition such as psoriasis is not harmful. The mark should fade over time without damaging the natural nail. Genes may also play a part in the appearance of these marks because heredity is one of the main causes.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger says the discolored marks may be a sign of melanoma.

If a dark mark appears underneath your nail and no injury could have caused it, it may be a sign of melanoma.

“A dark streak or area of the nail with dark discoloration can be a sign of melanoma and should be evaluated if there is no reason that trauma could have caused it,” Dr. Joel Schlessinger says. “The dark streak from melanoma is due to actual cells being grown in the nail area or under the nail.”

Melanoma marks are usually thicker than marks caused by blood or injury under the nails. The marks will also progress rather than fade over time. If you experience any marks underneath your nails, have them checked out by a dermatologist.

Ask Dr. Joel Schlessinger any questions in the comments section!

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About drjoelschlessinger

Dr. Joel Schlessinger is a dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon based in Omaha, NE.

Posted on July 31, 2015, in Dr. Joel Schlessinger in the Media. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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