Onychomycosis is a fungal infection of the nail which is estimated it to affect 1.6 million Australians. Currently treatments include antifungal nail lacquers, oral medications and laser treatment. Nail lacquers need to be applied daily or weekly and prescribed oral medications can have some adverse side effects. Laser treatment can be very costly.
Camberwell Podiatry is one of the first clinics in Australia to be involved with clinical trials for this new treatment. We have trialled the new Photodynamic Antimicrobial Therapy (PACT) for the treatment of Onychomycosis (fungal nails) for over 6 months. Our clinical trials have indicated a success rate of over 80%. This has now been approved and TGA certified. Treatment is cost effective and painless.
How does it work?
Micro-organisms including bacteria, viruses and fungi all possess a cell wall, whereas typical human cells only have a cell membrane. A special light sensitive fungal nail gel is applied to the affected area making it sensitive to light. The dye targets the fugal cell wall and is destroyed upon exposure to light of a specific wavelength. This results in a chemical reaction that kills the target cells without damaging healthy tissue.
How long does it take?
Each affected nail requires three sessions of 9.5 minutes exposure of light therapy. Your podiatrist will debride the affected nail and apply the gel before each treatment. It is recommended that the three treatments occur within a 7-10 day timeframe. It will take several months for the nail to grow to determine whether the nail grows clear and that treatment has been successful. Our clinical trials have shown over an 80% success rate.
How much does it cost?
Treatments take place within a standard consultation time slot and are therefore billed as a standard consultation. Claims for podiatry under private health insurance are available for those with cover.