There’s finally some good news coming on the coronavirus pandemic front. A new drug could play the role of a lifesaver in the increasingly ravaged world.
The cheap and widely available drug called Dexamethasone from the United Kingdom can reduce the risk of death by a third for critically-ill COVID-19 patients on ventilators, and by a fifth for all those on oxygen, as reported by BBC.
It’s part of a UK led clinical trial called RECOVERY. In fact, researchers claim that had it been employed earlier, it could have saved up to 5,000 lives. Let’s find out what the lead scientists are saying.
WHAT ARE THE SCIENTISTS SAYING ABOUT THIS MEDICINE FOR CORONAVIRUS?
An Oxford University professor called Martin Landay co-lead the trial. This is what he told Reuters –
“This is a result that shows that if patients who have COVID-19 and are on ventilators or are on oxygen are given dexamethasone, it will save lives, and it will do so at a remarkably low cost.”
His co-lead investigator Peter Horby had this to say –
“This is the only drug, so far, that has been shown to reduce mortality – and it reduces it significantly. It’s a major breakthrough.”
Mortality rates in nearly 2000 patients who were given dexamethasone were compared to those of nearly 4,000 patients who were not given the drug. The Oxford University team that carried out the study found that the risk of death dropped to 28% from 40% in patients on ventilators, and to 20% from 25% in those needing oxygen.
The drug is commonly used to reduce inflammation for other conditions. This means that it is effective for reducing the Cytokine storm in a COVID infected body which means an overreaction of the body’s immune system to disease. A drug like this is actually a very important one in times like these.