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Hi Doctor,

The nails on my right hand seem to be clubbing and are in the early stages as in they increased curvature/size and slight flotation. However, my left hand nails are perfectly fine as they been all my life. I am worried because i read online this can be a sign of lung cancer. Please advise.


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replied May 18th, 2017
Skin Answer A61205
Hello and welcome

I appreciate your concern

Clubbing is the bulbous enlargement of one or more fingers of the hand/hands or toe/toes of one or both feet due to the proliferation and edema of the connective tissue which result in loss of the normal angle between the nail plate and it's adjacent skin.

Clubbing can both be acquired and familial/genetic.There are so many causes of clubbing,lung cancer being one of them (and not the only cause).In your case the clubbing is unilateral(involves one hand) while mostly in lung cancer the clubbing is bilateral,also by the time clubbing is evident in moat of the lung cancer patients they have developed all other miserable symptoms of the disease which i hope you don't have.

Unilateral clubbing can occur due to the axillary artery aneurysm or brachial arterio-venous malformations, so you should probably get these two ruled out first if your clubbing in one hand appeared recently with the other hand being completely fine.

Wishing you the best of health

Take care and Thank you.

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