Itching, burning and tenderness are sign of ‘new coronavirus symptom’, doc warns

ITCHING, burning and skin tenderness are a “new coronavirus symptom”, a doctor has warned.

Experts have witnessed an increased rise in patients being admitted with symptoms similar to arterial disease, but who are then found to have the coronavirus.

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Experts have warned that symptoms such as itching need to be monitored


Experts have warned that symptoms such as itching need to be monitored Credit: Mike Wilkinson

Arterial disease is a common circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries decrease the flow of blood to limbs.

Many patients with Covid-19 have been presenting with “Covid-toes” and one vascular nurse has now claimed that symptoms that accompany the condition need to be taken more seriously.

Dr Leanne Atkin works as a consultant at the Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield and said patients with mild symptoms of the coronavirus could display symptoms such as burning.

Dr Atkin is a member of the University’s Institute of Skin Integrity and Infection Prevention at the University of Hull and said there is an “alarming rise” in patients displaying itching symptoms.

What is Covid-toes?

Doctors believe that Covid toes is an “inflammatory

The condition appears on the feet of patients, even when no other symptoms are apparent.

Dr Ignacio Garcia-Doval explained that the most common type of rash in the study was maculopapules – small, flat and raised red bumps.

However, experts were reluctant to say that the rashes are definitely linked to covid-19 as they are a common symptom of many viral infections.

The European Journal of Pediatric Dermatology said there had been a “epidemic” of cases in Italy involving children and young adults.

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It is a condition that had not previously been linked to the virus.

Covid-toes is a dermatological condition of Covid-19 and was first identified in April by Spanish health care workers.

Those who have developed the condition will look as though they have chilblains.

Patients with Covid-toes can also experience burning, itching and tenderness around the affected areas and Dr Atkin said this is a “relatively new symptom”

Dr Atkin said: “It’s imperative that there is an increased awareness among practitioners and clinicians of patients’ feet and how changes in colour could be a sign of infection even in the absence of any other symptoms.

“It is really important that people start to recognise these early symptoms and if they notice any of them, they should be arranging for the patient to be tested for Covid-19 and considering carefully the need for referral onto Vascular Clinics.”

Patients with Covid toes often experience an itching and/or burning sensation


Patients with Covid toes often experience an itching and/or burning sensationCredit: COVID-PIEL STUDY

Dr Atkin added that such symptoms can be seen on mild Covid patients who go on to make a complete recovery.

They may also have pain and discoloration of the feet.

She said there has been a rise in people with acute limb ischemia and perfusion injuries, all of which are related to the coronavirus, the report stated.

Acute limb ischaemia restricts blood supply to tissues and can cause a shortage of oxygen.

This is needed for cellular metabolism which keeps the skin tissue alive.

If tissue loss is not monitored then the patient may have to undergo limb amputation.

Dr Atkin has now called for further training for staff in order to prevent the coronavirus spreading further through health care settings.

“These patients are coming into a normal vascular clinic surrounded by normal staff,” said Dr Atkin.

“Yes, we are wearing basic PPE but,this is why it is imperative for practitioners to be aware of this relatively new symptom of the virus, because, if this is actually a sign of Covid, we should be stepping up our protection for the staff and for our other patients.”

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