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In a strange turn of events an 86 year old woman has lost 3 fingers to a COVID-19 complication.

Although rare doctors warn that gangrene in the fingers and toes is one of the many possible after-effects of having CIVID-19.

Last year a 78-year-old woman also suffered the same fate and a British man lost his leg after a severe blood clot left Drs with no other option but to amputate.

READ MORE: 4 More symptoms that could mean you have COVID-19

How does COVID-19 cause gangrene?

According to the European Review for medical and Pharmacological sciences, severe cases of COVID-19 can have varied outcomes including respiratory disease syndrome, septic shock and multi-organ failure.

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COVID-19 can also cause necrosis and gangrene on the fingers and toes of patients with no history of blood disease.

This is because COVID-19 is known to interfere with the blood’s ability to clot properly. 

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Was it her heart medication?

The 86 year old woman who cannot be named for her privacy was hospitalised in Italy last year during the first big wave of infections. She tested positive for COVID-19 in April.

The woman who had been prescribed medication to prevent her blood from clotting in March after she suffered blocked blood supply to her heart.

The possibility of the gangrene is a result of her previous condition was ruled out after Doctors discovered that the lack of blood flow to her fingers was a direct result of her COVID-19 infection. 

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How to tell if you’re developing ‘COVID fingers’

Necrosis is the yet another known way that COVID-19 could manifest in your fingers and toes. 

COVID rash and changes in the colour of your nails are the other fingers and toe related COVID symptoms.


Necrosis in your fingers and toes due to COVID is caused by the virus blocking blood flow to your extremities. When this happens your fingers could start aching, feeling numb, cold, darkening and you could even lose some movement in your digits before they become completely unsalvagable.

In the case of the 86 year old woman in the Italian hospital, Dr’s reported the amputation of 6 of her fingers was the only option as they could not be saved and keeping them could lead to other infections and spreading to more fingers, her hands and gradually the rest of her body.


Sources :

European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences

European Journal for vascular and endovascular surgery



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While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.