Recent advances in therapies for onychomycosis and its management

F1000Res. 2019 Jun 25;8:F1000 Faculty Rev-968. doi: 10.12688/f1000research.18646.1. eCollection 2019.


Onychomycosis is the most common affliction of the nail. It may be caused by dermatophytes, yeasts, and non-dermatophyte molds. Traditionally, oral antifungal treatments have been used to treat the fungus, although they can be accompanied by side effects and drug interactions. Topical treatments provide an alternative modality, bypassing the systemic effects of oral drugs; recent research has centered on topical drug improvement and development. Physical and laser treatments are being used in conjunction with topicals, which may help penetrate the thick nail plate. In this review, techniques from all categories are outlined: both novel experimental approaches and progress and effectiveness of recently developed treatments. More long-term studies are required to determine the efficacy of various treatments, but cure rates are improved when patients adhere to treatments and follow preventative measures to avoid disease recurrence.

Keywords: antifungal; dermatophyte; laser; onychomycosis; tinea pedis; toenail.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Administration, Topical
  • Antifungal Agents* / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Nails
  • Onychomycosis* / drug therapy


  • Antifungal Agents

Grants and funding

The author(s) declared that no grants were involved in supporting this work.