Hangnails / Agnails

What Causes Hangnails/Agnails?

Hangnails/agnails can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'worrying' to 'needs attention'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

Diagnose your symptoms now!
  • check your overall health status
  • have a doctor review your case (optional)
  • identify any nutritional deficiencies

Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose hangnails/agnails, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "hangnails/agnails" as a symptom.  Here are four possibilities:
  • Increased Folic Acid Need
  • Protein Deficiency
  • Vitamin C Need
  • Zinc Need

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
low tryptophan levels
unpleasant smell sensations
grooves across fingernails
significant mouth sores
high alcohol consumption
much reduced sense of smell
absent sexual desire
history of adult acne
discontinued iron supplementation
low folic acid level
reduced sense of taste
brittle fingernails
... and more than 30 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of hangnails/agnails:
Cause Probability Status
Increased Folic Acid Need 91% Confirm
Zinc Need 21% Unlikely
Protein Deficiency 3% Ruled out
Vitamin C Need 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

In the Fingernail/Toenail Symptoms section of the questionnaire, The Analyst™ will ask the following question about hangnails / agnails:
Do you suffer from hangnails/agnails (torn skin around the fingernails or toenails)? If there is a physical cause such as biting, picking, cutting or regular exposure to water/soaps/chemicals then select that response.
Possible responses:
→ No / don't know
→ Yes, from a known physical cause
→ Occasionally - A few times a year
→ Regularly - A few times a month
→ Frequently - I usually/always have them
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate occasional hangnails, regular hangnails or frequent hangnails, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Protein Deficiency

Because nails are found at the extremities, they are the last to receive oxygen and nutrients carried in the blood.  Therefore, they often show signs of deficiencies sooner than other tissues.

Concerned or curious about your health?  Try The Analyst™
Symptom Entry
Symptom Entry
Full Explanations
Optional Doctor Review
Review (optional)
We use cookies for traffic analysis, advertising, and to provide the best user experience