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COVID Nails: Is It A Serious Sign Related To COVID-19?

COVID-19 is known to cause a broad range of symptoms; including a newly found COVID nails which is characterised by lines and grooves on the fingernails. The condition is usually known as Beau's lines.

Experts say that COVID nails are mainly seen in COVID patients post recovery from the illness or say, after they test negative for the infection. In this article, we will discuss COVID nails and other details.

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What Are COVID Nails?

COVID-19 nails are recognised as a post-COVID symptom in recovered or recovering patients. In medical terms, the condition is known as Beau's lines, which are like grooves or horizontal lines in the nail plate. In COVID-19 patients, the condition occurs without skin rashes and is usually harmless, but it may indicate the sign of a viral infection.

A study talks about a 60-year-old healthy woman who was presented with the sign of a convex half-moon shaped red band on all her fingernails, post-recovery from COVID-19. The COVID nails occurred two weeks after the occurrence of the COVID-19 symptoms.

No other skin manifestations were observed and no medical history of any skin-related diseases was present. After following up for one month, the bands are still present and wider. [1]

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Causes Of COVID Nails

There are many causes of Beau's lines such as trauma and environmental factors. However, the one which is associated with COVID-19 could appear due to undergoing extreme stress due to the infection.

The COVID-19 infection is known to cause severe symptoms which affect the immune system to the maximum. In patients already with compromised immune systems such as diabetics, the symptom could be severe. [2]

The use of medications like steroids or damage to the blood vessels due to viral infection could also be the possible causes. All this stress can impact the overall body health, including the nails.

Other Possible Causes

Some of the other possible causes of grooves or lines on nails are:

  • Acute kidney diseases
  • Thyroid problems
  • Presence of other viral diseases like mumps
  • Bacterial diseases like syphilis
  • Pneumonia
  • Zinc deficiency

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Symptoms Of COVID Nails

  • Grooves or white coloured lines on the nail plate of both the fingernails and toenails. [2]
  • Ridges on more than one finger.
  • Bow-like lines on the nails.
  • Clubbing of the nails.
  • Spoon-shaped nails.
  • Separation of the nails from the nail bed.
  • Red half-moon nail pattern

Is It A Usual COVID-19 Side Effect?

Experts say that COVID nails are not a common symptom and only some people get affected with the condition post-recovery from the condition. Also, the symptoms may appear several months after the illness.

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Treatment Of COVID Nails

The primary treatment for COVID nails is to let the nails grow, which you can later trim. Other treatment includes intake of a well-balanced diet or use of supplements, especially those rich in zinc and vitamins.

If you notice that the COVID nails are getting more severe with time, it is better to consult a medical expert or a dermatologist soon.

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To Conclude

Current evidence says that there is no direct link between COVID nails and severity of the COVID-19. This is because some people may get the symptom while some cannot, considering both have recovered from the severe COVID-19 infection.

Also, some other nail-related symptoms which occurred in COVID-19 patients include orange discoloration of nail tips and Mees' lines which has not been resolved even after months of recovering from the infection..