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Surgery and Acrylic Nails

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,900
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:23 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello Ladies (I wouldn't imagine too many men would have input :D )

I've read a couple of things about problems with acrylic nails and surgery. Something about them coming off with the anesthesia. Is this really true? :SS
With all my back problems, my nails don't really seem all that important right now. BUT, I've had them for eight years and can't bear the thought of giving them up.

Should I get prepared to take them off before surgery? :?? My real nails are thin like tissue paper, that's the reason I started treating myself with acrylic nails.

Thank you for your thoughts...


  • I don't know anything about this. I do believe though when I had gallbladder surgery, that they asked me to make sure nails were clipped before surgery. I think to prevent germs in the op room? It was a few years ago, so I don't really remember much.

    Good Luck
  • As a nurse, I know we are not allowed to wear acrylic nails due to the fact they harbor bacteria and can transfer infection. Also, sometimes they interfere with the pulse-oximeter (oxygen monitor) that clips onto your finger. As far as anesthesia, I haven't heard of anything there. I know it made my hair fall out like crazy, still is 4 weeks later :) Good-luck, Sue
  • Whenever I've had surgery I've always been asked to remove them before hand. I'm thinking it was so they could see my nail beds. I'm like you Norcal_Gal, I've had mine for many years, and really hate the thought of taking them off, but I will as always, for my surgery on the 15th of this month. Another reason I'm taking them off is with being on medical leave, the check is not as big as my regular paycheck, so need to cut costs where ever I can. :(
  • Hiya,

    I had arcrylic nails on the once when i had surgery, they didnt mind. As long as they are kept short you should be ok . Check this with your hospital 1st.

    Angie x
  • i was told no polish on fingers or toes and no acrylic nails this was during hysterectomy, they said they need to see color of my nail beds, but i believe it depends on how long your under, when i have had smaller surgery's done and only under for a short time they said it didnt matter, maybe its the doc? i dont know.
    now cali-sue what is making your hair fall out from surgery?........patsy
  • It is a defo NO from here!

    They need to see the nail bed - if your fingers turn blue from poor oxygenation of positioning in theatre - and not have risk of contaminents or substamnces that may be flammable or burn you.

    It's not worth it - just for a few days....
  • A good friend gave me this tip, and it has worked. I used to love getting my nails done, but then couldn't afford it and my nails were very thin and weak.

    Take a bottle of clear polish, pour some out, just enough to put in some crushed garlic. Put enough in to come up about 1/3 of the way on the bottle. Apply regularly.

    I know this sounds like it would stink but it doesn't. The only way you smell the garlic is if you keep sniffing your nails right after you paint them. It will take at least a month to notice any difference, but I've been doing mine this way for about 4 months now and have trouble clipping my nails, they have become so strong. And they grow longer than ever before, and don't rip off like they used to.
  • norcal- I was told no nail polish pre-op as they wanted to be able to see the nail bed for a quick visual check for low oxygen. The acrylic nails may be clear but I am not sure if the acrylic interferes with the device on your finger to measure oxygen (oximeter?). :/

    The anesthesiologist may also have requirements and I would ask pre-op as they may have guidelines.... :) jade
  • Hi hun,
    Ask the hospital pre op testing gals!!
    They are usually great in answering all questions.

    Years ago it used to be no nailpolish at all etc.
    Now you can go in with your nails painted!! (toes anyway)

    All hospitals have different procedures. I have not found one the same.
    Most likely they will ask you to remove 1 on each hand. They use it for their gadgets also to monitor the circulation.

    So just give them a call. They will answer for ya..

    Best of luck on your sugery!!
    When is it for????
    Terri >:D<
  • I went in with my toenails painted pink and no one complained. You know they should be able to just look at the skin on your toes/fingers to check for color, but I know I have seen many patients with one fake fingernail removed, or the polish removed, especially with extremity surgery. Anesthesia can make your hair fallout :O
  • It sounds like my nails will have to come off! :< I know it's a small price to pay to make sure the doctors know how I'm doing during surgery. I'll double check it with my doctor at my next appointment.

    I don't have a date yet, I see a second surgeon for another opinion at the end of the month. I'll make my decision, as far as a date goes, after that. I do know I'm having the surgery (ALIF), but it probably won't happen until November.

    Just getting my ducks in order! (most likely w/o nails :))( )

    Thanks for all your input and the beauty tips!

  • While under anesthesia your breathing slows down. Nail beds are the most reliable source for reading oxigenation levles with a pulse ox reader. Nail polish or acrylic nails will block the pulse ox from reading correct oxygen levels. This is monitored closely due to how your body is going to react to the anesthesia.

  • Hmm. I was able to keep my acrylics on when I had my surgery back in December. I remember the pre-op paperwork saying no nail polish, but when I asked about it, the registration nurse just "bah"-ed it off. She said it wouldn't be a problem.

    So--I had a microdisc with silver acrylic nails (in rotten condition, since I could no longer tolerate the nail salon chairs) this past December. I was able to get them redone in happy Christmas red just a few days after I got out of the hospital. B)
  • They do need to look at the color of your nail beds. They can turn purple or blue depending on your oxygen level, and can show signs of heart problems. I learned about this in school, I'm a professional Cosmetologist. Sounds unrelated, but it was information I learned while studying Esthetics...Lol.
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