Another odd symptom of COVID-19: skin issues among young patients

Dermatologists are noticing another unusual symptom of the coronavirus: skin issues.

One study from Italy noted it in 1 in 5 patients.

It's been described as either a rash or hives or an area that looked like frostbite on the fingers or toes. And it was predominantly seen in younger patients.

Researchers say that could be related to blood clots, another unusual phenomenon that is also raising concerns.

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It's become such a concern the American Academy of Dermatology has created an online registry so health care providers can report their findings.

"It just was so painful," recalls Jessica, of Los Angeles.

She did have classic coronavirus symptoms like fever and cough but later developed unusual skin problems.

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"I looked down and was like, 'Oh my gosh, my toe is turning blue!'" she vividly remembers.

Then it developed into a painful red irritation.

"I felt like I had really bad blisters on it," she says.

When she tried to lightly scratch an itch, her blood vessels broke.

Jessica's dermatologist was stumped, till she looked at overseas research.

"In northern Italy, there was a study that showed that out of 148 patients at this hospital, none of which had gotten medication, 1 in 5 had a rash associated with their condition of COVID-19," says Dr. Shirley Chi, a board-certified dermatologist.

Twenty percent of the patients had some sort of rash.

The Academy of Dermatology's guidance urges doctors to be alert for several different kinds of rashes ranging from hives to measles-like rashes to something resembling frostbite.

Dr. Chi says it's important to notify your doctor, not only to treat your symptoms but to help others as well.


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