A teenager developed an agonising ulcer in her vagina because of coronavirus.
The unnamed 19-year-old, from Colorado in the US, is said to be in so much pain from the sore she is "unable" to pee.
Doctors found the 2cm deep genital wound in the labia of her vulva after she went to hospital complaining that her vagina was causing her "distress". The ulcer was understood to be full of yellow pus.
It is believed to be the first reported vaginal ulcer to be caused by coronavirus.
Just two days earlier, she was diagnosed with Covid-19 at the hospital after suffering a fever, rash, sore throat and cough.
The patient remained in hospital for two days while being treated with painkillers and dexamethasone – a new coronavirus drug that dampens the immune system.
She was later discharged and advised to pee in the bath to reduce the discomfort.
Her symptoms – the ulcer and Covid – lasted two weeks.
Obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Jenny Christl and her team published their findings in the Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, stating coronavirus was "known to affect multi-organ systems through activation of a systemic inflammatory response".
They added that other viral syndromes such as Epstein−Barr virus (EBV) and cytomegalovirus (CMV) had previously caused vaginal ulcers.
The study said: "In conclusion, this case highlights a novel association of Covid-19 infection…
"To our knowledge, this is the first case report to describe vulvar aphthous ulcers associated with a symptomatic Covid-19 infection in an adolescent."
The patient's vulva was understood to have been left damaged after shedding a lot of skin because of the issue – a common occurrence with ulcers known as "skin sloughing".
Tests revealed the infection was unlikely to be transmitted sexually as the patient had a long-term partner.
Baffled medics concluded the wound was caused by the coronavirus, but admitted they were unsure how.
Reporting the rare side effect in a medical journal, Dr Christl and her team revealed vaginal ulcers had been caused by viruses in the past.
Viruses such as Covid have been known to trigger unusual autoimmune reactions that can cause major health issues.
The report also highlighted how mouth ulcers, rashes and other ailments were common among coronavirus patients.
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