The thing called COVID toes is a mystery that has been getting a lot of attention in the mass media and the medical media. COVID toes are chilblains on the toes that are commonly occurring in those infected by the new coronavirus that is causing the current global pandemic. Chilblains are reasonable common in the colder climates, but there have been so many reports of them occurring at a very high frequency in those with COVID-19 it has left many experts puzzled as to why that is happening and if it is part of the disease process or if it is just a coincidence. There have been plenty of publications in the medical journals reporting on this and speculating what the problem is.
It not exactly clear why COVID toes it is so common in those with the coronavirus. Several theories have been suggested. One is that the cytokine storm or inflammatory process associated with the coronavirus infection affects how the small blood vessels in the feet respond to the cold, making them much more prone to chilblains than what would have been previously. There are well studies mechanisms in COVID-19 that support this theory. Another theory is that it has nothing to do with the infection and its processes at all and the increased incidence in those people with chilblains and a coronavirus infection is a result of changes in behaviour with the use of exercise, footwear, central heating and other elements during the lockdown or stay at home associated with the pandemic. A final theory is that it is just a coincidence. As the pandemic started to take hold during the northern hemisphere’s winter, which is chilblains season anyway, this could have accounted for the high incidence. In all likelihood, the reality is probably a combination of the three theories. One thing that several people have reported is that they do tend to respond to the treatment that is normally given for chilblains.