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Fingernails: Horizontal or Vertical Ridges, Pitting, Shape

Published: 2009-03-02 - Updated: 2022-06-24
Author: Disabled World | Contact: Disabled World (
Peer-Reviewed Publication: N/A
Additional References: Finger and Toenails Publications

Synopsis: Information regarding fingernail condition, including shape, nail color, and pitting, spoon nails plus vertical and horizontal fingernail ridges. Vertical fingernail ridges (Lengthwise grooves or ridges) may indicate a kidney disorder (kidney failure); associated with aging or iron deficiency (Anemia). It may mean a tendency to develop arthritis. Paronychia (felon) is inflammation of the nail folds, which appear red, swollen, and tender. The cuticle may not be visible. Causes: fungal infection, secondary bacterial infection, people whose hands are often in water are more susceptible.



Nail (Anatomy)
In anatomy, a nail is defined as a horn-like envelope covering the tips of the fingers and toes in humans, most non-human primates, and a few other mammals. Fingernails and toenails are made of a tough protective protein called alpha-keratin, a polymer. Alpha-keratin is found in the hooves, claws, and horns of vertebrates. The nail functions by protecting the digits and contributing to tactile sensation.

Main Digest

Your Fingernail condition, shape, and color can often alert you to underlying health problems. Common conditions include nail color changes, pitting, spoon nails, as well as vertical and horizontal fingernail ridges.

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Disabled World provides general information only. The materials presented are never meant to substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Financial support is derived from advertisements or referral programs, where indicated. Any 3rd party offering or advertising does not constitute an endorsement.

Cite This Page (APA): Disabled World. (2009, March 2). Fingernails: Horizontal or Vertical Ridges, Pitting, Shape. Disabled World. Retrieved December 2, 2022 from

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