Omicron: GP spots ‘unusual rash’ in children infected with the new Covid-19 variant alongside other symptoms

Around 15% of children confirmed as having the new Omicron strain have developed a rash

An “unusual rash” has been linked to early cases of the new Omicron strain in children.

Dr David Lloyd, a GP in north London, reported a rash alongside fatigue, headache, and loss of appetite, as symptoms of the new strain seen in younger age groups.

Early cases of Omicron seem to be showing slightly different symptoms to other strains, according to Dr Lloyd.

What has the GP said about Omicron symptoms in children?

Symptoms of fatigue, headaches, loss of appetite and the emergence of the rash seemed to be “quite important”, Dr Lloyd told Sky News.

He said: “We’ve always had a small cohort of patients with Covid who are getting funny rashes but up to 15% of the Omicron children are getting an unusual rash.

“So we’re starting to learn a little bit more about the virus and we are starting to look out for it.”

The data suggests the Omicron variant doubles “very quickly” in the number of people that were in the community and so “let’s hope that it isn’t as deadly as the Delta and that we can get on top of it,” Dr Lloyd said.

“But it’s a concerning time,” he added.

What is the current Omicron situation?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) previously said there is no information yet to suggest symptoms of the Omicron variant are different from other Covid-19 variants.

However, the new strain is more transmissible, but milder, than the Delta variant currently dominant across the globe, early data suggests.

On 7 December Omicron cases in the UK hit 437 as 101 new infections were confirmed.

It is not yet known if the new variant increases hospital admissions or is impacted by the vaccines.

In around 10 days time the UK could have more cases of Omicron than some of the countries that have been put on the travel red list, professor Tim Spector from the Covid Zoe app, said.

"The official estimates are about 350-odd Omicron cases, and because the current testing is missing a lot of those, it’s probably at least 1,000 to 2,000 I would guess at the moment,” a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London told BBC Breakfast.

The professor carried on to say: "And we are expecting this to be doubling about every two days at the moment, so if you do your maths - say assumed it’s 1,000 at the moment, and you think it’s going to be doubling every two days, you can see that those numbers are going to be pretty (high) certainly in about 10 days time.

"By that time, we’ll probably have more cases than they will in some of those African countries.”

What are the main symptoms of Covid?

The NHS has listed the three main symptoms of Covid in both adults and children as a persistent new cough, high temperature, and loss of smell or taste.

However, the shortlist of symptoms has been called to be expanded as people with confirmed cases of Covid have reported various other symptoms.

Experts from the ZOE Covid Symptom Study App have urged parents to look for other signs in children including fatigue, headache, sore throat, fever, and loss of appetite.

A message from the editor:

Thank you for reading. NationalWorld is a new national news brand, produced by a team of journalists, editors, video producers and designers who live and work across the UK. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going. You can also sign up to our email newsletters and get a curated selection of our best reads to your inbox every day.