Black line on your nails can be a sign of cancer. Did you know?

How Many Are You Manicures? Jean Skinner is an esthetician in Uckfield, East Sussex (UK), and he shared his history .

One day, one of her clients asked her to apply a dark color on her fingernails to hide a transverse black line.

Skinner then advised him to go to the doctor, knowing that sometimes the symptoms of a cancer manifest themselves in this way.

The diagnosis confirmed that it was a ungual melanoma a major skin cancer.

This type of dark and blue spots do not just appear on the nails. Their size, color and shape may also vary.

It is important to note that this type of task is not always a sign of cancer. Their appearance may occur in the following normal situations :

  • drug consumption – some drugs have the side effects of nail pigmentation, which appears after several days of treatment
  • the pregnancy – it is possible that during pregnancy brown spots appear on the nails, which are without serious consequences
  • infections – the appearance of fungi on the nails causes a change of color
  • hematomas – if you observe a mixture of brown and red dots, it is probably the consequence of a sudden

When should I worry?

Although uncommon, ungual melanoma can occur in children.

The width of the line is greater than 4 mm, and several shades of brown make it up. It is not a single color

The line changes as time passes, and the skin surrounding the nail is also dark .

In most cases, ungual melanoma affects only one nail. However, there are symptoms that can occur in other areas of the body, such as the toes or scalp.

How dangerous is it?

 Cells of a tumor

Melanoma is considered to be the tumor that most aggressively affects the skin because it spreads rapidly in other organs, even in distant organs, such as the small intestine, the eyes, the brain and even the heart


 A doctor with his patient

There are different ways to treat melanoma on the skin. It all depends on the condition of the tumor at the time of treatment, and the physical condition of the patient.

Here are some of the treatments:

    • Radiotherapy – this method prevents the carcinogenic cells from continuing to grow; it is a local treatment, ie it concerns only the area where the melanoma is located
    • surgery – this technique is the most used, because it eradicates the tumor and the tissue that is around to prevent it from spreading in the surrounding areas
    • chemotherapy – this method is used when the tumor has spread to other parts of the body; the patient is given a combination of drugs
    • Immunotherapy – the goal of this treatment is to increase the defenses of the immune system


 Woman at the beach putting sunscreen

One of the main causes of melanoma is lack of attention when exposed to sunlight.

In order to protect one’s skin, the following recommendations must be taken into account:

      • not to be exposed between noon and 4 pm
      • use sunscreen daily, and apply cream half an hour before exposure (especially if you go to the pool or beach )
      • Drink at least two liters of water, because the sun dehydrates the body a lot and it is necessary to regulate the temperature
      • avoid tanning because UVA rays accelerate skin aging and increase the risk of skin cancer
      • watch his skin, and pay attention to any irregularities such as a mole that changes size or color. Do not let the signs pass!

Listen to your body!

It is very common for a melanoma to be mistaken for a benign disease such as onychomycosis or a common hematoma, and as a result, it is common for the disease to be diagnosed in the advanced state.

For health reasons, avoid self-medication, and go to the dermatologist when you notice an irregularity on the skin . This is the only way to get a correct diagnosis and treatment.

Prevention reduces mortality


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