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Covid 19 and dermatology

Corona Virus covid-19 illustration

Our World has changed dramatically since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Together with our social, occupational, and personal life, the new corona virus poses significant challenges for all of us in particular doctors, including dermatologists.

Despite the virus not directly infecting the skin, several skin conditions have been associated with COVID-19. These skin problems have occurred mostly as a result of prolonged contact to personal protective equipment and excessive personal hygiene. Pressure injury, contact dermatitis, itchy skin, delayed-pressure urticaria, and flare-ups of pre-existing inflammatory skin diseases, including seborrheic dermatitis and acne, have been described.

A variety of inflammatory rashes have also been found in Covid 19 patients. These rashes vary and resemble “viral” rashes that doctors see associated with other viral infections.

The skin was observed in about one-fifth of a group of patients with COVID-19 in the Alessandro Manzoni Hospital in Lecco, in northern Italy. The dermatologists in Italy looked at the skin of 148 COVID-19 patients in the hospital. They reported their findings in the Journal of European Academy for Dermatology.

Of the 88 COVID-19 patients, 20.5% developed skin manifestations. Eight of the 18 (44%) had skin rashes when they first developed covid symptoms, and the others developed their skin problems in hospital. Fourteen (78%) had red rashes, three had widespread urticaria, and one had chickenpox-like vesicles. The most commonly affected area was the trunk. Itching was mild or absent, and lesions usually healed up in a few days. Most importantly, skin manifestations did not correlate with disease severity.

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