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      Prevalence and epidemiology of onychomycosis in patients visiting physicians' offices: a multicenter canadian survey of 15,000 patients.

      Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology

      Prevalence, Adolescent, epidemiology, Onychomycosis, Office Visits, Middle Aged, Male, Humans, Female, Child, Canada, Aged, 80 and over, Aged, Adult

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          A prospective, multicenter study to determine the epidemiology of onychomycosis was performed in the offices of 3 dermatologists and 1 family physician in Ontario, Canada. In the sample of 15,000 patients, abnormal-appearing nails were observed in 2505 persons (16. 7%). There were 1199 patients (8%) with toenail or fingernail onychomycosis confirmed on mycologic examination, with 1137 patients (7.6%) who had only pedal onychomycosis, 40 patients with toenail and fingernail onychomycosis (0.27%), and 22 patients (0.15%) with only fingernail onychomycosis. The condition was more common in male patients (P <.0001) and older persons (P <.0001). The ratio of onychomycosis in toenails/fingernails was 19:1. When onychomycosis was present in toenails, the ratio of distal/lateral subungual onychomycosis (DLSO) to white superficial onychomycosis to proximal subungual onychomycosis was 360:59:1. The extent of DLSO in toenails was mild (< or =25% nail involvement), moderate (26%-74% disease), and severe (> or =75% nail involvement) in 27.6%, 39.9%, and 32.5% of patients, respectively. After adjusting for the age and sex distribution of the general population, the projected rate of onychomycosis in Canada is 6.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 6. 1%-6.9%). The organisms causing toenail onychomycosis were 90.5% dermatophyte, 7.8% nondermatophyte molds, and 1.7% Candida spp. The corresponding organisms causing fingernail onychomycosis were 70.8%, 0%, and 29.2%, respectively. In a large sample of 15,000 patients, abnormal-appearing nails were present in 17% of the sample with mycologic evidence of toenail or fingernail onychomycosis in 8%. The projected prevalence of onychomycosis in Canada is 6.5% (95% CI, 6. 1%-6.9%).

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