Many COVID related rashes are likely in what we call the exanthem category. Viral exanthems can be relatively non-specific rashes that start during or even a couple of weeks after exposure and can last 1 to 4 weeks. Biopsies may show non specific changes making it difficult to suggest COVID versus another viral trigger. The challenge in this window of time is that many times the COVID PCR test is negative as these patients may no longer be contagious and their serum antibodies may not be positive yet. In these cases we often are left to assume COVID based on an exposure or timing based on clinical history.
For example, we saw relatively few "COVID toes in March of 2020 although we should have likely seen more given the high number of COVID cases. In April 2020, we saw several patients come in with what was likely COVID related skin changes once the media appropriately helped build awareness.