November 19, 2020 8:08 PM
The World Health Organization (WHO) this Thursday, November 19, 2020, advised against the use in hospitalized patients with covid-19 of the antiviral remdesivir, one of the main treatments against the disease with which it was experienced this year because no evidence was found that it leads to improvements in patients.
An international panel of WHO experts concluded that there was no evidence that the drug, produced by the American company Gilead and previously used in Ebola patients, reduced mortality in the most severe cases of Covid -19 or reduced the need for ventilation.
The results, published in the British Medical Journal of the British Medical Association, were obtained after analyzing data from four trials involving 7,000 hospitalized patients with coronavirus.
The drug “has no significant effects on mortality or other important indicators in patients, such as the need for mechanical ventilation or the time to clinical improvement,” the experts stressed.
They clarified that the results do not indicate that remdesivir is devoid of certain beneficial effects for patients, but they advise against its use due to the high cost and possible damage to health of a drug that must be administered by route. intravenous.
They also clarified that they contend that clinical trials with the drug, some of which were supported at the time by the WHO, are continuing in specific groups of patients to continue to gather evidence on its effects.
For months, the Organization has recommended in particular the use of dexamethasone, a very affordable corticosteroid on the international market, for the treatment of severe cases of COVID-19, because it is the one that has offered the best results to date. .
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