CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC UPDATE: ANOTHER HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE STUDY BOMBS

By Akin Ojumu

So, another hydroxychloroquine study bombs. Duh! Is anyone really surprised? 

This is yet another scientific nail in the coffin of the chloroquine is the “game changer" against COVID-19” quackery.

This is exactly why science matters. It is the reason there’s a gulf of difference between anecdotes and empirical data. And it goes to show that wishful thinking and false hope do not equate to scientific evidence or clinical efficacy.

STUDY TITLE: Hydroxychloroquine in Patients with COVID-19: an Open Label, Randomized, Controlled Trial

STUDY AUTHORS: Wei Tang, Zhujun Cao, Mingfeng Han et al

STUDY OBJECTIVES: To assess the efficacy and safety of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) plus standard-of-care (SOC) compared with SOC alone in adult patients with COVID-19

STUDY DESIGN: Multicenter, Open label, randomized controlled trial

STUDY LOCATION: 16 government-designated COVID-19 treatment centers in China

STUDY PERIOD: February 11 to 29, 2020

STUDY PARTICIPANTS: 150 patients, 18 years or older, hospitalized with COVID-19

STUDY METHOD: 75 patients received standard-of-care, while another 75 received standard-of-care plus a loading dose of 1200 mg HCQ/day for the first three days, followed by 800 mg once daily for two weeks (or three weeks in severe cases)

PRIMARY ENDPOINT: Rate of negative swab tests at day 28

SECONDARY ENDPOINTS: Negative tests at the earlier time points, improvement rate of clinical symptoms within the 28 days, and normalization of C-reactive protein (CRP) and lymphocyte count within that same period

STUDY RESULT: The overall 28-day negative conversion rate was not different between standard-of-care plus HCQ and standard-of-care group. Negative conversion rate at day 4, 7, 10, 14 or 21 was also similar between the two groups. No different 28-day symptoms alleviation rate was observed between the two groups

CONCLUSIONS: No significant differences were seen with hydroxychloroquine treatment. There were no significant adverse events during the trial

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