BREAKING! COVID-19 Symptoms: Researchers Say More COVID-19 Infected Patients Displaying Skin Rash Which Should Be Considered As A Warning Symptom
: Medical researchers from King’s College London and Zoe Global Ltd have conducted a study suggesting that skin rashes could be valuable predictors of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The research finds are being peer-reviewed and are currently published on a preprint server. https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.07.10.20150656v1
The large and detailed community-based study showed that 8.8% of individuals who had tested positive for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) also reported having a skin rash. Among people who had not tested positive, but did report at least one classic symptom of COVID-19 symptom based on NHS guidelines, 8.2% also reported skin rashes.
Current NHS guidelines say the three most common signs of COVID-19 are fever, persistent cough, and a reduced sense of smell (anosmia).
Dr Mario Falchi from the department of Twin Research and Genetic Epidemiology at King’s College London and lead researcher said that skin-related symptoms are not included in the current guidelines even though these can be easily spotted by patients,
The research team says their findings strongly support including skin rashes, adding that although skin rashes are far less common than fever, they are much more specific and last longer.
Dr Fakchi told Thailand Medical News, “Recognizing rashes is important in identifying new and earlier COVID-19 cases.”
Sadly, the link with skin manifestations has been slow to emerge despite even many COVId-19 patients complaining of skin rashes in the early stages of the pandemic, this was not picked up.
However, it has become apparent during the COVID-19 pandemic that while the disease is primarily a respiratory illness, it also targets multiple organs, including the skin.
Certain studies have previously reported urticaria, chicken pox-like body rashes, and chilblains on the toes or fingers (acral rashes), possibly due to minor thrombotic events or damaged endothelium in small vessels of the digits.
The link between COVID-19 and skin manifestations has however been slower to emerge than it has for organs such as the heart, intestine, and brain.
Dr Falchi added, “COVID-19 rashes may present in many forms and at different stages of the disease. The heterogeneous presentations, the time delay, as well as the focus on severely ill patients during the early phases of the pandemic, led to the skin being overlooked as an important target organ for COVID-19.”
The researchers used data available for 336,847 UK users of the COVID Symptom Study app to investigate the diagnostic value of skin rashes for infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The team also used data available for 11,546 people who participated in an independent survey on COVID-19-related skin symptoms.
From the data analysis, skin rashes increased the odds of SARS-CoV-2 positivity more than fever. Of 27,157 app users who provided swab test results, 2,021 (7.4%) were positive for SARS-CoV-2, and 25,136 (92.6%) were
Significantly, of the swab-positive individuals, 178 (8.8%) reported skin rashes (138 body rashes; 62 acral and 22 both body and acral), compared with 1357 (5.4%) of swab-negative individuals.
Detailed association analysis showed that the presence of body or acral rashes increased the likelihood of being swab positive for SARS-CoV-2 by 67%. This compares with fever increasing the odds of SARS-CoV-2 positivity by 47%, and fever is commonly used to screen for COVID, points out the team.
It was also found that skin rashes were also predictive in untested, but symptomatic users.
From among the 334,690 app users who did not provide a swab test result, 17,371 reported one of the three main symptoms (fever, persistent cough, and anosmia), which according to NHS guidelines, would require isolation and SARS-CoV-2 testing.
Importantly, of those reporting one of the three typical symptoms, 8.2% also reported a skin rash, compared with 6% of untested users who did not report any of the three symptoms.
Interestingly, association analysis revealed that among untested users who reported one of the three main symptoms, the likelihood of having a body rash was 46% greater compared with those who did not report one of the symptoms. The increased likelihood of acral rash among those reporting a symptom was not statistically significant.
The research findings support the inclusion of skin rashes as a suspected symptom.
In order to capture more information about the type, duration, and timing of rashes, the team analyzed data available for people 11,546 with a rash who participated in an independent survey on COVID-19-related skin symptoms.
It was found that among 694 responders who were positive for SARS-CoV-2 by swab or antibody test and provided information on COVID-19-related symptoms, the rash appeared before any other symptom in 17% of cases and in 21% of cases, the rash was the only symptom.
Dr Falchi further added, “Twenty-one percent of the SARS-CoV-2 positive surveyees presented with skin symptoms alone and would have been missed if using the NHS classic symptoms alone.”
The study team say the findings strongly support the inclusion of skin rashes as a suspected COVID-19 symptom.
D Falchi concluded, “Although, it is less prevalent than fever, it is more specific of COVID-19 and last longer. An increased awareness from the public and healthcare professionals regarding COVID-19 skin changes will allow more efficient identification of new and earlier clusters of the disease.”
For more emerging COVID-19 Symptoms
, keep on logging to Thailand Medical News and not WHO or US CDC sites!