California physician says anti-arthritis drug improves symptoms of coronavirus patients within 72 hours
California doctor says arthritis drug tested in the US and France to treat coronavirus has improved patients’ symptoms within 72 hours
- Dr. Imran Sharief, a pulmonologist from California, gave tocilizumab, a drug used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, to critically ill COVID-19 patients
- He said that one patient’s condition improved within 72 hours and they came after five days of a ventilator
- It comes after a French study that found that patients who received tocilizumab were less likely to receive life support and were less likely to die than those who received a placebo
- Researchers believe it soothes cytokine storms, which occur when the body not only fights the virus but also attacks its own cells and tissues
- Here’s how you can help people affected by Covid-19
Dr. Imran Sharief (photo), a pulmonologist from California, gave tocilizumab, a drug for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, to critically ill COVID-19 patients
A California doctor says a rheumatoid arthritis drug may be an effective treatment for coronavirus.
Dr. Imran Sharief, a pulmonologist from Santa Ana, told it Fox news that he was treating COVID-19 patients on fans with tocilizumab sold under the brand names RoAcemtra and Actemra,
Their conditions started to improve within 72 hours and after five days he was able to extubate and remove patients from the ICU.
Because there are no approved treatments specific to the virus, there is an urgent need to test both existing drugs and experimental therapies to stop the disease – which has killed more than 74,000 Americans.
Tocilizumab belongs to a class of medicines called interleukin-6 inhibitors that can help reduce a dangerous overreaction to the virus by the body’s immune system called a cytokine storm.
These so-called storms occur when the body not only fights the virus, but also attacks its own cells and tissues.
In the case of COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, cytokine storms can cause breathlessness.
Currently, tocilizumab is not approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for use in coronavirus patients.
He said that one patient’s condition improved within 72 hours and they came after five days of a ventilator. Pictured: Tocilizumab
Researchers believe the drug soothes cytokine storms, which occur when the body not only fights the virus, but also attacks its own cells and tissues. Pictured: U.S. Army members bring a patient to the ICU at Javits New York Medical Station, April 18
Sharief said that a patient in her 30s quickly deteriorated after experiencing traditional symptoms such as fever and difficulty breathing.
They were on respiration and nearly dead when doctors decided to try it tocilizumab.
“We were already careful and worried because this patient was very young, so we started taking the medication right away,” Sharief told Fox News.
He said that if certain critically ill patients are treated with the drug early, organ damage can be prevented.
“I would recommend to my colleagues that as soon as you see a deteriorating patient, a rapid deterioration in the clinical condition with high oxygen demand or on ventilation begin treatment as soon as possible within the first 12 to 24 hours,” said Share.
It comes on the heels of a French study that found that patients who received injections of the drug were less likely to receive life support and were less likely to die than those who received a placebo.
Doctors from the Paris Public Hospitals (AP-HP) recruited 129 people with moderate to severe cases of COVID-19.
Sixty-five patients received two shots of tocilizumab along with antibiotics, while the remaining 64 received standard antibiotics.
The results showed that those who received the arthritis drug died less quickly and were less likely to receive life support compared to the control group.
The study has shown comprehensively that fewer patients with oxygen and breathing difficulties had to be transferred to intensive care [after being treated with tocilizumab]Said Dr. Jacques Eric Gottenberg of the Rheumatology Department of the University Hospital of Strasbourg RFI.
AP-HP said the results are being submitted to a peer-reviewed journal, but chose to share preliminary findings because the drug showed a clear “ clinical benefit. ”
The hospital noted that further studies are needed to test the safety and efficacy of treatment of coronavirus patients with tocilizumab.
“If these results are confirmed, this drug has the advantage that it is already available in all hospital pharmacies and can be used very quickly. It’s one or two injections for each patient, “Gottenberg said.