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Covid Toe: Study Explains Origin of Hand and Foot Injuries – Current Events

This symptom usually develops within a week to four weeks after Covid-19 infection and can result in swelling or color change in the fingers and toes, the paper said. The Guardian.

The skin condition known as ‘Covid toe’ may be a side effect of the immune system’s response to fighting the Covid-19 virus, according to one study. The inflammation, similar to that caused by chilblains, causes redness in the hands and feet and can last for months.

This symptom usually develops within a week to four weeks after Covid-19 infection and can result in swelling or color change in the fingers and toes, the paper said. The Guardian.

The researchers behind the study, which was published in the British Journal of Dermatology, examined 50 participants with Covid-19 and 13 with similar lesions caused by chilblains, which emerged before the pandemic. With the analysis they found that a mechanism underlying both types of disease was acting in the body, generating an immune response that presented high levels of certain antibodies, which, erroneously, targeted and reacted with the body’s own cells and tissues, as well as with the virus invader. Analysts also found an overlap with type I interferon, a key protein in the antiviral response.

In addition to the immune system, the cells lining the blood vessels that supply the affected areas of the body also appear to play a critical role in the development of ‘Covid toe’ and chilblains.

The study’s author, dermatologist Dr. Charles Cassius, said the research provided a deeper understanding of this condition. “The epidemiology and clinical features of chilblain-like lesions have been extensively studied and published. However, little is known about the pathophysiology involved. Our study provides new insights.”

In the first months of the pandemic, concerns arose that the ‘Covid toe’ was one of the unrecognized symptoms of the infection, after several patients in several countries manifested this condition. In some cases, patients injured by this condition did not have any of the more common symptoms of Covid-19 infection, such as cough, headache or fever. The diagnoses collected about this situation, similar to chilblains, described red or purple lesions on the side or sole of the foot, or on the hands and fingers.

UK podiatrist Dr Ivan Bristow said that for most people affected by ‘Covid toe’, the infection goes away on its own, similar to chilblains. However, he added that some people may need to resort to treatments based on creams and other medications.

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