A recent study has found a new coronavirus symptom, named COVID toes, in which infected people may see their toes getting red and swollen and ultimately turning purple. According to researchers at the International League of Dermatological Societies and the American Academy of Dermatology, the new symptom can develop chilblain-like inflammation on the feet of the patient that can last for months and typically develops within one to four weeks of contracting the COVID-19 infection.
As per reports, the study states that the newfound symptom is mostly mild and feet do return to normal within weeks. However, the researchers also said that about one in six people require hospital treatment for COVID toes, while some of those with long symptoms report cases lasting for several months.
Dr. Esther Freeman, from the International COVID-19 Dermatology Registry, is reported to have said that there is a certain sub-group of patients which when infected with the virus develops inflammation in the toes, making them red and swollen at first and then turning them purple. Freeman added that in most cases, it is self-resolved and it goes away as it is relatively mild. COVID toes last on average about 15 days; however, there have been reported cases where patients suffer from the same for a month or two.
50% patients report COVID toes
According to the research, nearly 50 percent of the patients have reported having COVID toes and about 16 percent of those had to be hospitalised for the condition. Freeman said that the identification of people with COVID toes symptoms, including those in the UK, helps scientists understand more about coronavirus-related symptoms in different parts of the body. She added that the researchers are starting to see “long COVID” symptoms in other organ systems.
This is the first time that researchers have noted COVID-19 related signs in the skin as well. Freeman said that the skin can be viewed as a window into the rest of the body because one can see the inflammation which can be indicative of inflammation elsewhere. She added that the present report is just the ‘tip of the iceberg’ as COVID toes is probably happening a lot more than it is being reported.
(With AP Inputs; Image Credits-AP)