Human immune virus (HIV) is a viral infection that people contract through having unsafe intercourse, having contact with infected bodily fluids, and the use of sharp objects that are infected.
According to Healthline, ways HIV causes changes in your nails may include:
1. Yellow nails
One common trigger of yellow toenails is a fungal infection that attacks the nails. This may be called onychomycosis or tinea unguium, which is quite common in people that are infected with HIV.
The nail may also become brittle, thickened, or produce a foul odor.
2. Thickened nails
The toenails can get thicker over time and eventually make you feel pain. Thickened nails often happen in the toenails because they’re usually exposed to wet areas.
For this reason, they are more liable to fungal infections. Patients with uncontrolled HIV are more susceptible to fungal infections as a result of their weakened immune systems.
Other symptoms of a fungal infection of the toenails are:
• yellow, brown, or green color in the toenail.
• a bad odor from the toenail.
• toenails that split or crumble.
• having toenails that lift from the toe bed.
3. Discoloration (melanonychia)
Melanonychia is a condition that causes brown or black stripes on your nails. Studies show that people with HIV are liable to melanonychia.
The condition is more common in people with a darker skin tone. For people that have a dark skin color, lines on the fingernails can in some cases be normal.
Though melanonychia may be linked with the HIV infection itself, it may also be brought on by some medications used to treat HIV.
For instance, a previously commonly used anti-HIV drug called zidovudine, a nucleoside/nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor, can cause this condition.
Melanonychia isn’t harmful, however. You should persistently take your medications as instructed by your doctor.