4 strange Covid symptoms you may not have heard about

4 strange Covid symptoms you may not have heard about

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Evaluation: from ‘Covid nails’ to hair loss, knowledge reveals that Covid signs can transcend what you would possibly anticipate from a daily chilly or a flu

By Vassilios Vassiliou, University of East Anglia; Ranu Baral, University of East Anglia, and Vasiliki Tsampasian, University of East Anglia

Nicely over two years into the pandemic, a whole lot of 1000’s of Covid cases proceed to be recorded all over the world day by day. With the rise of new variants, the signs of Covid have additionally developed. Initially, a fever, cough, and loss or change in sense of scent or style as the main symptoms which may point out Covid an infection. Now, not too long ago up to date guidance suggests additionally looking for signs together with a sore throat, blocked or runny nostril, and a headache.

However what about a few of the extra obscure indicators and signs? From pores and skin lesions to listening to loss, rising knowledge is more and more exhibiting us that Covid signs can transcend what you would possibly anticipate from a daily chilly or a flu.

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Pores and skin lesions

Covid-related pores and skin complaints should not unusual. In reality, a UK study revealed in 2021 discovered that one in 5 sufferers solely exhibited a rash and no different symptom. Covid can have an effect on the pores and skin in a variety of ways. Some folks could expertise a widespread maculopapular rash (flat or raised areas of discoloured pores and skin), whereas others would possibly current with hives (raised areas of itchy pores and skin).

“Covid toes“, in the meantime, describes crimson, swollen or blistering pores and skin lesions on the toes. This symptom is extra generally seen in adolescents or younger adults with gentle or no signs.

Most Covid pores and skin lesions are inclined to go away after a couple of days, or in some situations a couple of weeks, with out the necessity for any specialised remedy. If the pores and skin may be very itchy or painful although, you possibly can seek the advice of a GP or dermatologist, who could suggest remedy resembling a cream.

‘Covid toes’ are characterised by crimson, swollen or blistering pores and skin lesions. Ternavskaia Olga Alibec/Shutterstock

Covid nails

Throughout an an infection, together with that of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus which causes Covid-19), our our bodies naturally attempt to categorical that they are below an uncommon quantity of stress. They’ll do that in quite a lot of strange methods, together with by way of our nails. “Covid nails” encompasses adjustments resembling:

Beau’s lines – horizontal indentations that happen on the base of the fingernails or toenails when there is a non permanent interruption in nail progress resulting from a bodily stress on the physique

Mees’ lines – horizontal white traces that seem on the nails, considered attributable to the irregular manufacturing of proteins within the nail mattress

A red half-moon pattern which develops on the base of the fingernails (the mechanism underlying this alteration is unclear).

The info on how many individuals expertise Covid nails is restricted, however it’s been estimated it could possibly be up to 1-2% of Covid sufferers.

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Covid nails have a tendency to look within the days or perhaps weeks following Covid an infection because the nails develop. Though they is perhaps painful initially, the overwhelming majority are inclined to return to regular over a couple of weeks. Notably, whereas these adjustments could also be indicative of Covid, they can be attributable to various things. For instance, Beau’s traces may be secondary to chemotherapy or one other an infection.

Hair loss

Hair loss is probably an understated symptom of Covid-19, often occurring one month or extra after the acute an infection. In a single research of just about 6,000 individuals who had beforehand had Covid, hair loss was the most common post-Covid symptom, reported by 48% of individuals. It was particularly prevalent amongst individuals who had extreme Covid and white ladies.

It’s thought that this outcomes from the hair “sensing” the stress within the physique, resulting in extra shedding. Certainly, hair loss can be triggered by different irritating occasions, resembling childbirth. The good news is that with time the hair grows again to regular.

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Listening to loss and tinnitus

As with different viral infections, such because the flu and measles, Covid has been discovered to have an effect on the cells within the inside ear, with listening to loss or tinnitus (a continuing ringing sensation within the ear) generally following an infection.

In a review study that included 560 individuals, listening to loss occurred in 3.1% of sufferers with Covid, whereas tinnitus occurred in 4.5%. In one study of 30 individuals who had been identified with Covid, and 30 who hadn’t – none with pre-existing listening to issues – the researchers discovered that Covid was related to injury to the inside ear which led to listening to impairment at larger frequencies. Whereas for the overwhelming majority of sufferers this resolves by itself, circumstances of permanent hearing loss linked to Covid have been reported.

Covid has been related to listening to loss and tinnitus. DimaBerlin/Shutterstock

Why all these signs?

We do not perceive precisely what causes these signs, however we all know crucial half is performed by a course of known as inflammation. Irritation is our physique’s pure defence mechanism towards pathogens; SARS-CoV-2 on this case. It entails the manufacturing of “cytokines” – proteins that are vital in controlling the exercise of immune cells.

Extreme manufacturing of those proteins, as part of the irritation triggered by Covid an infection, may cause sensory deficits, which probably clarify why some persons are presenting with listening to loss and tinnitus. It may well additionally disrupt the capillary networks, very tiny blood vessels which give blood to organs together with the ears, pores and skin and nails.

The signs we have described right here should not unique to Covid an infection. That mentioned, when you discover any of those signs, it might be acceptable to think about a Covid check, particularly when you’re in an space the place Covid is circulating.

You may also contact your GP, notably if the signs are getting worse or inflicting you vital discomfort. On the identical time, you may be reassured that the majority of those signs are probably to enhance with time.

Vassilios Vassiliou is Professor of Cardiac Drugs on the University of East Anglia. Ranu Baral is Visiting Researcher (Educational Basis Physician FY2) on the University of East Anglia. Vasiliki Tsampasian is Cardiology SpR & NIHR Educational Scientific Fellow on the University of East Anglia. This text was initially revealed by The Conversation.


The views expressed listed here are these of the writer and don’t symbolize or mirror the views of RTÉ


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