04 Jan 2021
The American journal of surgical pathology;
Publish Ahead of Print
The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a rapidly spreading pandemic, secondary to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The severity and the little knowledge that we have of the disease have made us focus mostly on the respiratory symptoms. As we bend the curve, other findings reported in association with COVID-19 become of importance for specialists to recognize. We describe the spectrum of clinicopathologic lesions in the skin that can be the only symptom or the first manifestation of COVID-19 and demonstrate the origin of the virus. We collected 25 patients with skin lesions in this context. We recognized 5 types of cutaneous manifestations including acute acroischemic or chilblain-like lesions (11), purpura palpable (2), exanthemas (9), urticarial eruptions (1), and other lesions (2) that might appear with more unspecific pictures. Chilblain-like lesions were the most common form of presentation, which tend to appear as self-healing, erythematous-necrotic plaques mostly on the feet, in young patients with no systemic symptoms associated. Importantly, we visualized viral particles with electron microscopy in 5 of 13 cases analyzed. In this study, we seek to draw a picture of the spectrum of clinicopathologic lesions that may appear in the skin in the context of COVID-19. Although apparently skin lesions are not correlated with disease severity, it may help in some cases to recognize and control the spread of the infection sooner.