Wellness

What Your Fingernails Say About Your Health (VIDEO)

06/07/2010 04:25pm ET | Updated December 6, 2017

We bite them when we're nervous and paint them before a night out, but did you know that our fingernails can act as important indicators for our overall health?

Dr. Susan Evans, chief of dermatology at the Skin Care Physicians of Beverly Hills, appeared on the Today Show to discuss what to watch out for regarding sudden changes in the color, texture and shape of our nails.

Here are a few "rules of thumb," so to speak:

  • "Clubbing" -- Expansion in the tip of the finger could be a sign of pulmonary problems.
  • "Pitting" -- Small, linear indentations in the nails might be a sign of autoimmune disease
  • "Discoloration" -- Pale nails could signal anemia, whereas white nails might indicate liver disease. And a yellow or green nail could be a fungal infection.
  • A stripe in the nail might be skin cancer.

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