Fingernails, and the story they tell

My fingernails are all pitted, some ridged, some smooth, all have the 'spooning' which are the waves on the ends. Long before any PsA was imagined, the Allergist always looked at my fingernails first, and besides looking at the tongue, so did the acupuncturist! So I can only imagine that the healthier the fingernails, the healthier the body!

It's amazing how much fingernails tell about your health. I went to a site and read up on it. It's amazing what shows up in them, even cardiac disease and chest and abdominal infections.

Interesting fingernail facts: Fingernails grow faster than toenails. They also vary in speed of growth; slower in the summer, faster on long fingers, slower on the left hand, faster on the right. Growth is also affected by disease, hormone deficiencies, and even aging.

My grumpy rheumy informed me my ridges weren't related to PsA nor was the slight pitting. Didn't mention the spooning. Whatever. Guess I'll see if the next rheumy has the same take on it or not.

Good topic, SK, as nails can tell if you've got psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis.

I was diagnosed with PsA based on the pitting of my nails. I'd been having a lot of pain/stiffness in my fingers but no other sign of PsA - no skin lesions (haven't had them yet) but my rheumy said the pitting is a sure-fire symptom of PsA. And from what I've read about PsA on all the various sites, pitting is totally linked to PsA. I'm starting to get the nails separating from the nail bed as well (no fancy manicures for me!) but I'm thankful that is the only visible sign of this!


Hi Andrea,

When my Rheumatologist was looking over my fingernails, I happened to ask how he handled the artificial nails that are so popular, and he shook his head, rolled his eyes, and said they had to remove them, and the glue, for the next visit, so it is an important diagnosis tool. Even nail polish bothers me, so none of that for me either.

I do not have psoriasis either, but have read that it could appear even 20 years later! My skin is dry, but no sign of it, yet! Won't hurt my feelings if I never get it, I am always giving the grandsons oatmeal baths and creaming them up, they always get better in the summer though.

Hope they can help you with your fingers and hands! Feel better!