Skin rashes should be added to official coronavirus symptoms list, say experts

Scientists are urging the government to add a new coronavirus symptom to the official list.

At the present time in the UK, the main recognised symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • A high temperature
  • A new, continuous cough
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

According to the NHS, most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.

But now experts believe skin rashes should be added to the list.

Many people tested positive for the virus are reporting having a body rash, or a rash on fingers or toes, according to the British Association of Dermatologists.

Meanwhile, data from the Covid Symptom Study app found that 9% of swab-tested users with Covid-19 reported one of the types of rashes.

The research found that the rashes are twice as common in children as adults.

The Dermatology association is now saying that this suggests “rashes are a key symptom of Covid”.

Dr Tanya Bleiker, President of the British Association of Dermatologists, said: "The association between certain rashes and Covid-19 has become increasingly clear, and being able to recognise these is crucial for reducing the spread of the disease."

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Dermatologists are worried that if rashes aren’t added to the list, many people with no other symptoms could be spreading the virus unknowingly.

Especially because in many users who gave a positive nasal swab, a rash was the only sign of infection.

Veronique Bataille, consultant dermatologist, who led the Covid skin research, said: “We have created this Covid-19 rash gallery so that clinicians and any interested parties can have access to it and help them identify potential Covid-19 rashes."

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She continued: "Our research shows that rashes can be more predictive of Covid-19 than fever and cough, particularly in children.

"We found that one in six children gets a rash without any other classical symptoms.

"For most, Covid-19 rashes last for a few weeks and eventually disappear. In some cases, prescribed medication may be needed if the rash is very itchy.”

If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus, you should get a test as soon as possible.

Remember to stay at home, and don’t have visitors until you get your test result.

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