Teenager struggles to walk properly after suffering from 'Covid toes' – despite never testing positive for virus

A TEEN has revealed how she struggles to walk properly after suffering from "Covid toes" for months.

Sofia, 13, has been suffering from severe pain in her feet since October but has never tested positive for Covid-19.


The teenager has been unable to wear shoes due to the painful condition.

"My feet swell up, I get blisters all over them and they go from pink to purple really quickly," she told the BBC.

"I get lumps on the bottom of them which makes it really hard to stand up for long. I can only wear flip-flops. "

"Covid toes" typically develops within a week to a month of being infected and can result in toes becoming swollen and painful, as well as a chilblain-like inflammation.

Some people say symptoms last several months and around one in six sufferers require hospital treatment.

Sofia, from Scotland, has been unable to go to school and now relies on a wheelchair when she goes on long walks.

"Before this, I was singing, dancing and just running around the place. Now I can't really do that so it's very different," she told the BBC.

But despite the teen's pain and her doctor's prediction that she has "Covid toes", she has never tested positive.

The doctors never really said how long it was last for so I'm quite scared to be honest.

"All the antibody tests and Covid tests have been negative, but everyone still thinks its long Covid," she said.

"It's kind of scary because I don't really know what's happening. 

"The doctors never really said how long it was last for so I'm quite scared to be honest.'

Sofia's mum Gaby feels like her condition has not moved forward nine months on despite visits to dermatologists.

"She's been to dermatologists and been on steroids," Gaby said.

"They've done all the tests, medications, creams and everything on her feet but they've kind of run out of ideas."

I don't know if I'll be able to do the things that I like to do in the future.

While she waits for her condition to get better, Sofia keeps her feet soaked with warm water and bath salts which helps to calm down the inflammation.

"It's kind of scary because I don't really know what's happening," she said.

"I don't know if I'll be able to do the things that I like to do in the future."

Public Health Scotland says that no cases of "Covid toes" has been reported to them.

A Scottish government spokesperson told the BBC: "Covid-19 is still a relatively new illness and it is important that we continue to improve our understanding of its effects on people.

"Although we do not hold any data on this particular symptom, we are keeping all aspects under review as an international understanding of this virus develops."

“Covid toe” was discussed as a possible symptom of the virus as early as May last year.

Carol Cooper, Sun Doctor, said: “Covid-19 has covered the globe in a year, causing nearly 3m deaths, after-effects in thousands of peoples, and doctors baffled by the range of symptoms from ‘Long Covid’.

"Covid-19 is such a new infection that there are bound to be many gaps in medical knowledge.

"But research is going on into the skin and toe symptoms as well as the other puzzling features of this virus."

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