Paronychia is a skin infection (fungal or bacterial) around a nail.
Symptoms of redness or swelling can come on suddenly and last for a short
period of time (acute), or symptoms can be ongoing or occur repeatedly
The infection is more likely to develop from having the hands or
feet in water repeatedly, or from an injury, such as biting or cutting off a
hangnail or pushing back a cuticle.
Minor redness or swelling may clear up with home treatment, such as
keeping the area clean. Some cases require treatment with topical antibiotics
or antifungal medicine. Occasionally a doctor will need to drain
the infected area.
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine