Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, two recent studies have shown that the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) has no positive effects on patients suffering from COVID-19. As per reports, hydroxychloroquine is an anti-inflammatory drug that had previously been suggested by US President Donald Trump and others to be a possible cure for the deadly coronavirus.
As per reports, one of the authors of the study that was published in the BMJ journal stated that hydroxychloroquine had shown positive results from smaller studies but the results of their study showed that the drug had no effect on coronavirus patients who were admitted into hospitals and required oxygen.
According to another study that was performed by Chinese researchers, 4 weeks of testing also did not reveal any concrete results. In their study the researchers had split 150 patients into two groups, one group received Hydroxychloroquine. Both groups continued to show similar rates of infection.
In a similar study that was conducted on patients admitted at New York-Presbyterian Hospital (NYP)–Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), a quaternary, acute care hospital in northern Manhattan. Among the 1446 consecutive COVID-19 patients admitted there between March 7 and April 8, 2020, a total of 70 patients were excluded from the study because of various reasons including intubation or death.
In the study, 811 patients received hydroxychloroquine and 565 did not. Among the patients who received hydroxychloroquine, 45.8 per cent received it in the 24 hours between their presentation to the emergency department and the start of study follow-up, and 85.9 per cent received it within 48 hours after presentation to the emergency department.
Earlier, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had issued a safety communication regarding the known side effects of malaria drug hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine. FDA said that the side effects include serious and potentially life-threatening heart rhythm problems. It added that the drug has received Emergency Use Authorization for the treatment with risks already in the drug labels.
(Representative Image)(Image Credit AP)