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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 2/21/2009 4:15 PM (GMT -6)   
does anyone have horizontal ridges running through their toenails or fingernails?
i just looked down and saw they are on my toenails and i know they aren't normal, but i am pretty sure there are many underlying helath problems that cause these and i was just wondering if UC was one of them. is it an autoimmune thing?  my dad has MS and he has them on his fingernails.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 16736
   Posted 2/21/2009 5:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't have indents but I do notice that my nails are very weak lately. I think it has to do witht he medications I take./
Diagnosed with proctitis in March 2007 - Treated with Canasa 2x Daily
Diagnosed with UC December but had symptoms months ago - Treating with Asacol (feel hopeless)

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 402
   Posted 2/21/2009 6:07 PM (GMT -6)   

I have indents on my thumb nails...often wondered where they came might be right with it possibly being the medications we take sicklygirl.

I sometimes also get very sensitive nails - sore and tingly to touch. Not sure whether that has anything to do with UC?!

22 year old female, from the UK
Diagnosed with Ulcerative Proctitis Jan '08
Hospitalised Jan '09 for IV Hydrocortisone steroids - had no effect!
Currently taking daily: 9 x 400mg Asacol tablets, plus Fybogel fibre supplement and vitamin tablet.

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 2/21/2009 6:33 PM (GMT -6)   
I had deep ridges in my fingernails and I started taking biotin. Biotin is naturally produced in your intestines so if you are having chronic D then it can deplete your body of it. Biotin is what helps keep your nails and hair healthy. You can try taking a supplement Biotin - I personally found that 5mg or (5000mcgs) works better then the lesser mg's.
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc-'92-Colazal(9 daily),6mp(50-100mgs),Bentyl, Prilosec,Biotin,Forvia,Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa**~Year-round allergies-Singulair, Zyrtec~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome-'04-Norvasc~Sacroiliitis-epidural injections~bulging and herniated discs C5/C6 & C6/C7~3 epidural injections-second series starts 2/17, OA in my fingers -Celebrex, Tylonel Arthritis and Voltaren Gel
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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 63
   Posted 2/21/2009 9:17 PM (GMT -6)   
My husband had deep pits in his fingernails when he injured his neck. The fingernails with the pits were the same fingers that were affected from nerve damage. He almost had neck surgery, but steroid shots into his neck reduced the swelling enough that he never had the surgery. The pits in his nails went away when he started feeling better.
diagnosed January 2009
mild pancolitis
Sulfasalazine 500mg 3X

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 289
   Posted 2/21/2009 11:43 PM (GMT -6)   

My sister and I both have raynauds disease and this is one of the symptoms.

Daughter 7, UC
Asacol 2X2 plus 1x daily
Omega 3
Folic Acid 1000mcg.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 330
   Posted 2/22/2009 7:07 AM (GMT -6)   
Years ago before i was diagnosed with UC I had a problem with psoriasis on my palms of my hands and bottom of my feet and this included ridges on my nails, this went away then I has a sore back and was diagnosed with ankolysing spondalytis..then this went away ...A couple off years later I gave up smoking and this bought on my first flare...was diagnosed with UC and then they discovered i have the HLA-B27 gene...I'm sure its all related...makes more sense knowing about the gene ....

38 year old female
UC - Diagnosed 2006
HLA-B27 Gene
Iritis 2008

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 2/22/2009 12:40 PM (GMT -6)   
what is the HLA-B27 gene?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2855
   Posted 2/22/2009 12:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I think some people just have them more than others, they can be very normal and it's not necessarily something to worry about. My mother is healthy as can be and she has always had ridges on her nails. I probably do, too, but I buff my nails regularly.

Treat yourself to a pedicure, I bet a good nail tech can tell you how common they are.
49 year old female attorney, diagnosed UC/pancolitis 1985, no surgery but much suffering.
Asacol/5ASA 6x400 mg maintenance for 20+ years; use prednisone & Rowasa for flares. 
August 2008 sought care of naturopathic doctor. Food sensitivity test showed wheat/gluten, other intolerances; eliminated all wheat/gluten from my diet. Probiotics (Ultimate Flora, 50 billion), trying Curamin. Doing OK, but still have some bad days. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 726
   Posted 2/22/2009 1:52 PM (GMT -6)   
I've had those ridges most of my adult life. I do pick at my cuticles, but I insist that's because they do not form properly and cause painful hang nails. I have been looking up various psoriasis conditions, and the nail ridges could even be related to that i believe.
Diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis 6/2006 at age 26 after sudden E.R. visit
~Pancolitis (Mild to Moderate)
 ~I had Mono in 2000
On Colazal 3x3/day; Folic Acid 1mg; Calcium/Magnesium/Zinc combo
(Generic Balsalazide not as effective for me)
In remission about 2-3 months after E.R. but not back to normal!
I hate Ulcerative Colitis and can't wait till we eradicate it

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 3231
   Posted 2/22/2009 2:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Perhaps this is something to do with the medications. I took Colitis medications for only three months. I don't have them.
Joy - 47 yrs and counting
Diagnosed w/ UC Dec 06 (also have IBS)
Currently in remission

Lexapro (for stress)
Probiotics and Vitamins (a whole bunch of them)
Anti-inflammatory foods: turmeric, seaweed, garlic...
Avoid: anything with high-fructose corn syrup, foods high in fructose, artificial sweeteners
Previous treatments: Fecal transplantation (worked), Prednisone (stopped working), Colazal (stopped working), Asacol (stopped working)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 678
   Posted 2/22/2009 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
My husband has deep ridges in his toenails (but perfect fingernails). He has the healthiest colon (I'm jealous!). So, I don't think it's UC related.
31 yr old female
Diagnosed 2/29/08 with Mild Universal UC
I've had UC since 2000 but was in remission for most of those 8 years med free
Lialda Colazal & Asacol made symptoms worse, MUCH worse
Not taking any meds for now. May be on 6mp soon?

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 91
   Posted 2/22/2009 4:48 PM (GMT -6)   
I has those with my 1st severe UC flare up. I think a lot of things can cause them. Supposedly it indicates an interruption in nail growth due to serious illness. I wouldn't be surprised if the meds cause them too though.
31 year old female diagnosed with UC (entire colon) Feb 2008
(4) 400mg Asacol 3x a day
Remicade 10mg/kg every 8 weeks
Omega 3 supp, calcium supp

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 330
   Posted 2/22/2009 6:01 PM (GMT -6)   
HLA B27 is an inherited gene marker associated with a number of related rheumatic diseases. They share in common, features such as spinal and peripheral arthritis, skin and GI disorders, anterior chamber eye disease, and psoriasis like skin lesions. This gene is found with highest prevalence in patients with ankylosing spondylosis (>90%), reactive arthritis (80%), and patients with the combination of peripheral arthritis and either psoriasis or inflammatory bowel disease (50%).

Why get tested?
To determine whether you have human leukocyte antigen B27 (HLA-B27) on the surface of your cells; to help assess the likelihood that you have an autoimmune disorder associated with the presence of HLA-B27

An american doctor working in our NZ hospital tested me for the Gene

38 year old female
UC - Diagnosed 2006
HLA-B27 Gene
Iritis 2008

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 2/22/2009 10:13 PM (GMT -6)   
this is some totally useless info but here is the deal with the nail indents
When a person suffers a serious injury or illness the nails get pits in them.  And those are actually so accurate that when bodies from a long time ago, like the frozen ice man, thousands of years old, they can use the indents in his fingernails to see illness or injury in his life. 
i know that was useless to know,lol.
But anyway, it has something to do with your body needing so much to sustain itself during a serious health time that it takes away from things like nails and hair (which is why so many lose hair after a serious flare) becaue those are not as necessary for survival as your liver or heart.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 3402
   Posted 2/23/2009 9:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Interesting topic. I have had ridges in my fingernails for as long as I can remember - a long time pre-UC.
Pan-colitis and GERD diagnosed May 2003
Osteopenia (hip and spine) diagnosed Feb 2006
Status:  Remission
Asacol 12 per day,  Azathioprine 50mg, Aciphex, Effexor XR, Forvia, Fibercon, and Culturelle
Remicade: 1st infusion 06/17/08:  Next infusion: end of March or early April
Last Prednisone dose:  7/15/08
Co-Moderator UC forum:  Keep HealingWell running smoothly:

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 2204
   Posted 2/23/2009 10:12 AM (GMT -6)   
I developed deep horizontal ridges in some of my toe nails when I was on 6mp - in addition to my hair falling out. I was only on it for a few months and that was years ago, but I still have these odd ridges.
Diagnosed with ulcerative colitis spring 1999.
Maintenance dose sulfasalazine. Probiotics, l-glutamine, vitamin D and fish oil caps. George's aloe vera juice. Oregano oil antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal. Mostly grain-free and dairy-free diet. Long-term remission with only minor blips.

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