'Fish pedicure' caused one woman's toenails to stop growing

  • 'Fish pedicure' caused one woman's toenails to stop growing

'Fish pedicure' caused one woman's toenails to stop growing

If you've been thinking about getting one of those fish pedicures, this might make you think twice: a woman's toenails fell off after getting one.

The weird beauty practice has people rest their feet in tubs of lukewarm water while tiny fish called Garra rufa nibble at their toes - exfoliating the skin by sucking off dead cells.

In the new case, it's not exactly clear how fish pedicures might cause onychomadesis, but it's likely that trauma from the fish biting multiple nails caused the nails to stop growing, the report said.

The woman, in her 20s, went to the doctor after noticing that her toenails looked abnormal - a problem she'd had for about six months, the report said.

"I wouldn't say it necessarily poses a significant risk to humans, but it did illustrate that they may be carrying things which are nasty both to fish and humans". "In addition to onychomadesis, there are also serious infections associated with fish pedicures".

Lipner said the woman's nails may grow back - but it'll take as long as 18 months.

Writing in the journal JAMA Dermatology, she explained that the freakish beauty ritual first gained traction after people noticed that wild populations of the toothless fish - a member of the carp family native to Turkey - liked to nibble on human skin, and for whatever reason, preferred munching on unsightly psoriasis plaques more than normal tissue. However, people with onychomadesis usually experience spontaneous regrowth of their nail within 12 weeks, according to a 2017 report in the journal Cutis.

"I do not recommend fish pedicures for any medical or aesthetic goal", she told Gizmodo.

Their recommendations dealt with hygiene and infection control, "as would be required for other types of beauty salons".

"We will have to wait quite a while to see the outcome", she said. Additionally, the fish are sometimes recycled from person to person, and a bacterial outbreak among the fish was reported in a 2011 investigation by the UK's Fish Health Inspectorate. Fish were found with bulging eyes, many hemmorhaging around the gills and mouth.

Indeed, in 2012, researchers in the United Kingdom intercepted shipments of Garra rufa fish bound for U.K. spas and tested them for bacteria.

Lipner would not reveal where the woman got the pedicure, but noted the treatment has been banned in at least 10 states, largely due to health concerns.

While Garra rufa have been investigated as a treatment for psoriasis - though not in the context of a nail salon - Lipner stressed that this is not standard medical practice.

First we were warned of the risks of getting eyelash extensions.