FDA Issues Warning About Antimalarial Drug Hydroxychloroquine Over Heart Issues

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Do antimalarial drug Hydroxychloroquine is prophylaxis for COVID-19? 

COVID-19, the infectious disease caused by SARS-Cov-2, continues to spread and more than 26,000 deaths happen in four months. Doctors are in working hard to develop the vaccine, but still, it will take 12 to 18 months. 

In some cases, the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine is used to cure COVID-19, because it prevents the virus to stick and enter the human cell. Some clinical trials have shown positive benefits but at the same time, there are negative effects too. So until we have a positive result from the well-designed trail, the hydroxychloroquine should be used under the supervision of a medical doctor. Also, the FDA has issued a warning that the person should intake this antiviral drug under doctor supervision only. 

Once again on April 24, the FDA warned the people again against the use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine, and this move was taken after the agency received serious side effects such as rapid heartbeat and abnormal heart rhythms in the patient who was taking this drug. The most foremost point is that these drugs are not approved by the FDA for treatment. 

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While the doctors are still working to find out the vaccine, in the recent survey 181 patients were reviewed by the doctors. From which half of the patients were admitted to the hospital within 48 hours after the use of hydroxychloroquine. 20.02% were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) or died within 7 days. Looking at the death rate, this shows that no significant difference made by the medication. 

The Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) has published guidelines about the use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine. According to IDSA the drug should be taken along azithromycin and be used in the perspective of doctor’s trial. The guideline also highlights that the use of these drugs carries higher risk such as irregular heart rhythms in patients. 

Doctors already know that these drugs have a lot of side effect but still, it’s been used, according to Libutti, if a drug or combination of drug works then we need to organize the strategy much more and if it’s not working then we need to just focus on strategy. 


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