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New coronavirus symptom includes toe swelling and rash

Posted at 8:52 PM, May 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-21 00:52:07-04

KALISPELL — Doctors are learning about new skin symptoms related to coronavirus.

Dr. Doug Nelson, chief medical officer with Kalispell Regional Hospital told MTN that doctors are referring to this skin condition as COVID toes.

While classic symptoms of coronavirus are fever, chills and upper respiratory issues, Dr. Nelson says swelling, redness and itching are all symptoms of this condition. It's still unknown exactly what causes this but Dr. Nelson says research is showing there is a link between the virus and and inflammatory response in the blood vessels which causes the swelling and itching.

"How it happens is still not entirely known, but it's similar to what's called chillblains or pernio which is a condition that some people get after they've been too cold. Not quite frost bite," he said.

Dr. Nelson told MTN that while no patients in the Flathead Valley have shown this symptom he says out of the cases in Italy about 20 percent of coronavirus patients showed some sort of skin rash.

Currently, COVID toes are present in both children and adults.

Dr. Nelson explained that if someone does show symptoms of this rash, there is no evidence suggesting that the person would be at risk for losing their toes.