J Korean Foot Ankle Soc.  2019 Jun;23(2):52-57. 10.14193/jkfas.2019.23.2.52.

Short-Term Surgical Outcome of the Partial Nail Extraction in Ingrown Nail of Military Trainee: Is Matrixectomy Necessary?

  • 1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Armed Forces Daejeon Hospital, Daejeon, Korea.
  • 2Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Inje University Seoul Paik Hospital, Seoul, Korea. 20vvin@naver.com


An ingrown nail is common in military trainees who are exposed to highly demanding activities. Although the matrixectomy procedure has been the main treatment modality, several drawbacks may follow after the procedure, such as infection, periostitis, and continued pain that causes a delayed return to duty. This study examined the outcomes of a simple partial nail extraction with the hypothesis that this procedure may bring an earlier return to duty, lower the perioperative complications, and produce a comparable recurrence rate.
The medical records of patients who had surgical treatment for an ingrown nail in the authors' institution between April 2016 and December 2017 were reviewed retrospectively. Under the inclusion and exclusion criteria, 28 patients with a simple partial nail extraction (group A) and 29 patients with a partial nail extraction with matrixectomy (group B) were investigated. As the clinical outcome, the visual analogue scale (VAS) and satisfaction score, time to return to duty, complications, and recurrence rate were checked and compared between the groups.
The VAS scores of group B were significantly higher during the first (p<0.001) and second (p=0.026) follow-up week than group A. The time to return to duty was shorter in group A (7.8 days) than group B (10.1 days), and this difference was significant (p<0.001). Group B had five patients with complications, whereas group A had none (p=0.028). No differences in the recurrence rate (p=0.197) and patient satisfaction (p=0.764) were found between the groups.
In this study, simple partial nail extraction in military trainees resulted in lower postoperative pain, lower complication rates, and earlier return to duty than the procedure with matrixectomy. Military trainees are temporarily exposed to highly demanding activities. Thus, a satisfactory outcome would be expected with simple partial nail extraction without performing a radical procedure, such as a matrixectomy.


Toes; Ingrown nail; Military personnel; Partial nail extraction; Matrixectomy
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