Nail Clubbing: How One Woman’s Lung Cancer Was Diagnosed with Her Nails
The pros and cons of social media will forever be debated. On one side, there are people who always highlight the negative effects of social media, from stress to anxiety to depression.
However, it’s impossible to ignore the positive sides of social media – one of which is communities that look out for each other.
Fortunately, through the sea of advertisements and articles, people in 53-year-old Jean Williams Taylor’s circle still noticed the photo she posted.
Taylor posted an image of her nail on Facebook in late-July 2018. Compared to the average fingernail, hers was noticeably curved downward. She never really thought much about and chalked it up to genes that her mother passed down.
However, Taylor received a Facebook message from a medical professional urging her not to ignore the exaggerated curves in her nails. The individual even suggested that she go and get a proper examination.
“A tad extreme,” she thought. (1)
Why are her curved nails a cause for concern?
Not seeing why her curved nails were such a big deal, Taylor visited some medical professionals anyway. In a short time, they were able to identify her fingernail problem.
According to the Mayo Clinic, Taylor’s problem is known as nail clubbing. Over the course of years, nail clubbing can occur “when the tips of the fingers enlarge and the nails curve around the fingertips.” (2)
Nail clubbing may be a sign of:
- Low oxygen in the blood
- Various types of lung disease, including cancer
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Cardiovascular disease
- Liver disease
To be safe, doctors ran a series of tests – and it’s good that they did.
Blood tests, a chest x-ray, a CT scan, more blood tests, a breathing test for her lungs, a heart scan, an MRI, and then a lung biopsy. (1)
After viewing and analyzing her results, they diagnosed Taylor with cancer – two golf ball-sized tumors in her lungs.
While Taylor is in the process of treating her lung cancer and hopefully on the road to recovery, she wants other people to pay attention to their bodies. Like her overly curved nails, the human body almost always gives you signs that something might be wrong.
So, if you notice anything out of the ordinary, don’t wait. Visit your family doctor or medical professional to make sure nothing is wrong.
It’s far too easy to overlook or ignore such visible symptoms. Fortunately, after years of being aware of her curved nails yet assuming they were no big deal, Taylor was able to pinpoint her problem. Others might be able to as well – and earlier.
“Hope this post can help someone else in the early stages of cancer,” said Taylor (1)
If you want to learn more about what your nails are saying about your health…
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