Paronychia is a soft tissue infection around a fingernail that begins as cellulitis but that may progress to a definite abscess.  The 2 types of paronychia are as follows
Acute paronychia - Painful and purulent condition; most frequently caused by staphylococci
Chronic paronychia - Usually caused by a fungal infection
Paronychia is a soft tissue infection around a fingernail. More specifically, it is a superficial infection of epithelium lateral to the nail plate that begins as cellulitis but that may progress to a definite abscess. The 2 forms of paronychia, acute and chronic, usually differ in etiology, infectious agent, and treatment and are often considered separate entities.
The acute infection, which is painful and purulent, is most frequently caused by staphylococci, although it commonly has mixed aerobic and anaerobic flora. The patient’s condition and discomfort are markedly improved by a simple drainage procedure. Chronic paronychial infections are usually fungal, rather than bacterial, in nature