Fish Pedicure Causes Woman To Lose Her Toenails

July 9, 2018

ID 113844931 © Tumeyes |

After a young woman's toenails started to separate from her toes, a doctor finally zeroed in on the reason: a fish pedicure.
Six months before, the woman had dunked her feet in a tub of water filled with tiny fish called Garra rufa that will eat dead human skin when no plankton are around. It wasn't until later on that she noticed her nails beginning to shed.

According to the doctor, this problem is probably more common than we think.
Also scary, another species of fish which "grows teeth and can draw blood" is sometimes mistaken for Garra rufa and used in fish pedicures.

But the doctor believes that the woman's problems stemmed from the physical impact of the fish biting at the nail.
Experts say they're unsure how infections might be spread through fish pedicures. It could be due to lingering microbes from whomever's feet were there last versus the fish itself. Health experts have raised concerns that, in fish spas, the fish are recycled from person to person, and the tubs may not be properly cleaned between uses.