Coronavirus symptoms: Is a skin rash a sign of Covid-19?

16 July 2020, 11:43

Coronavirus and rashes: Experts look into the connection
Coronavirus and rashes: Experts look into the connection. Picture: Shutterstock

Are skin rashes a symptom of coronavirus? What signs you need to look out for when checking for Covid-19.

Coronavirus symptoms such as a high temperature, a loss of taste and smell and a persistent cough are all Covid-19 signs we’re familiar with.

However now, there’s a call for skin rashes to be added to the NHS coronavirus symptoms list as a new study has found those who have tested positive for the virus often report a skin rash too.

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So are skin rashes a sign of coronavirus? What have scientists said about the new symptom? Here’s what’s been revealed so far:

Scientists and experts are looking into a link between coronavirus and skin rashes
Scientists and experts are looking into a link between coronavirus and skin rashes. Picture: PA

Are skin rashes a coronavirus symptom?

At the moment, this is not a recognised Covid-19 symptom or sign however, there has been strong research into it.

Researchers from King’s College London looked into the data from 336,000 UK users of the COIVD Symptom Study app, where they found 8.8per cent of people who had tested positive for covid, also suffered with a rash.

They also found 8.2per cent of users who hadn’t been tested, but did show one of the recognised NHS symptoms, also confirmed a rash.

A further online study discovered 17 per cent of respondents who tested positive for the virus reported a rash as the first symptom.

It’s important to note that while this study does appear to suggest a link between skin rashes and coronavirus, it still needs to be peer-reviewed as well as have further studies.

Coronavirus symptoms: Temperature, a cough and loss of smell and taste are the recognised signs
Coronavirus symptoms: Temperature, a cough and loss of smell and taste are the recognised signs. Picture: PA

What have experts and scientists said about coronavirus and rashes?

Talking about their findings Dr Veronique Bataille, the lead author of the study, said: “Many viral infections can affect the skin, so it’s not surprising that we are seeing these rashes in Covid-19.

“However, it is important that people know that in some cases, a rash may be the first or only symptom of the disease.

"So if you notice a new rash, you should take it seriously by self-isolating and getting tested as soon as possible."

Professor Tim Spector, who is running the Covid Symptom Tracker app, has also mentioned concerns of a rash being connected to coronavirus.

The rise in Kawasaki disease in children recently, which is believed to have connections with covid, also has a skin rash as a symptom.

What are the confirmed NHS coronavirus symptoms?

The main coronavirus symptoms are a high temperature, a new continuous cough and a loss or change to your sense of smell and taste.

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