illustration of spoon shaped toenails--Sometimes an injury to the nail or frequent exposure to petroleum-based solvents can create a concave, spoon-like shape. However, iron deficiency also can cause this unusual shape.
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Toenails with slightly sunken, spoon-shaped indentations What it means: Anemia (iron deficiency) often shows up as an unnatural, concave or spoonlike shape to the toes' nail beds, especially in moderate-to-severe cases. It's caused by not having enough hemoglobin, an iron-rich protein in the blood cells that transports oxygen. Internal bleeding (such as an ulcer) or heavy menstrual periods can trigger anemia. (pic 2)
Spoon-shaped Toenails Koilonychia can have many causes. One of the more common is iron-deficiency anemia. Exposure to industrial solvents and chemicals may also cause the toenails to grow upward in a spoon shape. Certain systemic diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus, hypothyroidism, and Raynaud's disease, may also be the culprits.