COVID19: Are “Covid Toes” A Real Symptom?

April 30, 2020
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A frostbite-like rash on a person’s toes might be a symptom of the new coronavirus, according to anecdotal evidence from dermatologists around the world. 

However, research is needed to determine whether this peculiar rash is truly caused by  COVID-19.

The pinkish-reddish rash can turn purple over time, and causes a burning sensation in some people, Dr. Esther Freeman, a dermatologist at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, told The Washington Post. But the inflammation tends to disappear without treatment in two to three weeks, Freeman said.

So far, data shows that most people with so-called “covid toes” are asymptomatic or have mild cases of the disease, Freeman told the Post. Moreover, this strange rash tends to affect the younger crowd, including children and adults in their 20s or 30s, she said. 

“Most of the patients were young, healthy and had a benign clinical course,” she told the Post. “I don’t want people to think if they are having purple spots on their toes that they are going to end up on a ventilator in the ICU. That is not what we are seeing in the data.”

A series of images of covid toes, shared by Dadiyata The Jonathanian, on Twitter, show the range of appearances this rash can take.

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