Foot symptom could be early virus sign
As doctors work around the clock to find new ways to detect coronavirus early on, an investigation in Spain is showing promise.
With symptoms of COVID-19 varying wildly, a team of Spanish experts are investigating whether virus sufferers could be identified early through lesions to their feet - with hopes it could help diagnose those who are asymptomatic.
The Spanish General Council of Official Podiatrist Colleges released a statement last Thursday saying several coronavirus patients had shown lesions to their feet "similar to those of chickenpox or measles".
The professional body said "numerous cases" where coronavirus patients had lesions on their feet had been found in Italy, France and Spain - a "curious finding" that has being witnessed by both dermatologists and podiatrists.
This symptom has been detected "especially" in teens and children with coronavirus; however, some adults have also presented with foot lesions.
"They are purple lesions (very similar to those of chickenpox, measles or chilblains) which usually appear on the toes and normally heal without leaving a mark," the statement read.
While the medical body warned that "due to the short time we still cannot speak of scientific evidence", it encouraged podiatrists to be vigilant to the possible coronavirus symptom.
It comes after the International Federation of Podologists released an article recently reporting one of the first cases of this symptom.
Lesions appeared on the foot of a 13-year-old boy on March 8 that were initially thought to be caused by a brown recluse spider bite.
However, the teen was later diagnosed with coronavirus after presenting with symptoms of the illness.
LOSS OF SMELL AND TASTE A VIRUS FLAG: EXPERTS
New research has also found an increasing number of young patients classified as asymptomatic share a common affliction - a loss of their sense of smell and taste.
Professor Nirmal Kumar, president of ENT UK - the umbrella body representing British ear, nose and throat specialists - says anyone who develops anosmia should immediately self-isolate, even if they have no other signs of the disease.
"In young patients, they do not have any significant symptoms such as the cough and fever, but they may have just the loss of sense of smell and taste, which suggests that these viruses are lodging in the nose," Prof Kumar told Sky News last month.
A study of international cases by the British Rhinological Society Profession and the British Association of Otorhinolaryngology found a significant proportion of coronavirus patients reported losing their sense of smell, taste or both.
In Germany, two out of three coronavirus cases had a loss of taste or smell, while 30 per cent of Koreans diagnosed with the virus reported this condition.
Originally published as Foot symptom could be early virus sign