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Coronavirus symptoms: Do your toes look like this? Signs you could have ‘COVID toes’

The coronavirus outbreak has taken an incredible toll on almost everyone in the world. The deadly bug has more than 2.49 million infection cases confirmed globally, and a staggering 163,500 people are known to have died from the disease. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared COVID-19 a pandemic after its spread to more than 190 countries around the world. To significantly reduce one’s risk of serious health consequences, monitoring your body’s symptoms has never been more crucial – and there is an unusual symptom of a possible infection found in one’s toes.


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“COVID toes” is a lesser known symptom doctors have identified which is caused by the novel coronavirus.

Doctors have stated that “COVID toes” are rather interesting in that they appear in infected patients who don’t exhibit any other symptoms.

Dr Ebbing Lautenbach, chief of infectious disease at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Medicine said: “They’re typically painful to touch and could have a hot burning sensation.”

Italian doctors published a series of cases which showed a trend regarding the skin in COVID-19 patients and found that one in five patients had a skin issue.

What exactly are COVID toes?

COVID toes appear as frostbite-like areas of typically red or purple discolouration which can appear on the feet.

Dr Misha Rosenbach, associate professor of Dermatology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania added this symptom may also appear on one’s fingers too.

The discolouration is not due to anything to do with the weather.

Dr Amy Paller, chair of dermatology at Northwestern University said: “What we are seeing tends to be in response to the cold, but we’re seeing it in the middle of spring.

“And it’s happening in such numbers as is COVID that we have to think there’s a connection.”

Dr Lautenbach added: “This is a manifestation that occurs early on in the disease, meaning you have this first, then you progress.

“Sometimes this might be your first clue that they have COVID when they don’t’ have any other symptoms.”


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The “COVID toes” have been reported to be seen more in younger adults and children.

It’s often found in those who are asymptomatic or experiencing mild symptoms of COVID-19.

However more cases would need to be examined to determine which population is affected by the condition.

Cases of skin conditions including measle-like rashes or hives have also been reported.

However, these skin conditions could also be a result of certain medications or other viral infections.

As latest updates and death tolls continue to spark fear in many, a welcomed piece of optimistic news has just been announced.

Matt Hancock, Health secretary has announced the UK has “reached the peak” of the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Mr Hancock said social distancing was “making a difference.” Mr Hancock continued to stress the importance of adhering to the Government’s measures and said: “First, the NHS needs to continue to cope, second, that the operational challenges can be met, third, that the daily death rate falls substantially and consistently, fourth, that the rate of infection is decreasing, and most importantly, that there is no risk of a second peak.”

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  • Posted on April 22, 2020