COVID-19 has been associated with multiple type of skin conditions. One report from a hospital in Italy reported up to 20% of patients with Corona Virus have skin symptoms. Here in the US, the AAD is tracking associated skin findings reported by doctors across the country. Several different types of skin conditions seem to come up over and over again in patient visits. Some of these conditions can be seen in the absence of corona virus, but skin findings, especially with other corona virus symptoms or a history of close contact with COVID patients, would warrant testing for corona virus. Hives, a morbilliform (measles-looking) rash, “COVID toes” (looks like chill blains or vasculitis) also known as acral ischemia, a Chicken pox-like Vesicular (blistering rash), a rash called livedo reticularis which consists of a network of skin mottling with transient blanching from ischemic blood vessels in the skin and subcutaneous tissues, and lastly, a petechial rash (looks like tiny pinpoint areas of bleeding under the skin). Evidence is mounting that COVID has some mild to profound vascular effects…ranging from mild blood vessel involvemnent in the skin with no symptoms of illness in some people to stoke and death in others. If you develop a rash during this time, the best thing to do is to call or email your dermatologist for a telemedicine visit. Even when offices are reopening, many dermatologists will still be seeing rash patients by telemedicine (Skype, zoom, Facetime, doximity or other video platform) in order to keep rash patients, who may be asymptomatically shedding virus, separate from many of the older skin cancer patients with risk of serious illness from COVID. Treatment for rashes can be started via telemedicine and patients can be sent to testing centers or laboratories for appropriate bloodwork. Only if needed, patients with rashes that are not getting better, can be seen in the office. Remember, most people with COVID-related rashes are going to be just fine. Stay safe!
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#Telemedicine #Teledermatology #Skin #Dermatology