June 15, 2021

Study: HCQ, AZM boost survival of ventilated COVID-19 patients by 200%

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor's Note

This observational study by researchers at Saint Barnabas Medical Center, Livingston, New Jersey, and the Smith Center for Infectious Diseases & Urban Health, East Orange, New Jersey, finds that the use of weight-adjusted hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and azithromycin (AZM) improved the odds of survival of ventilated COVID-19 patients by nearly 200%, without a clear correlation with ECG abnormalities.

The findings are based on a re-analysis of 255 patients on invasive mechanical ventilation during the first 2 months of the COVID-19 pandemic in the US.


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The researchers found that when HCQ and AZM were given to patients together at high doses (>3g HCQ and 1g AZM), almost half survived, compared to one in seven who received just one of the drugs at the same dosage.

When the HCQ/AZM combination was given at lower doses, the risk of death was more than three times higher, than when given at the higher dosage.

The researchers also found that when adjusted for weight, the cumulative dose had an even greater effect—the average treatment effect (difference in mean survival) showed a steep increase between 40-50 mg/kg to a top of 46% for a dose of 82 mg/kg. Therefore patients receiving HCQ above 80mg/kg with >1g AZM had 14 times higher survival odds.

The finding that weight-adjusted cumulative dose had an even greater effect on survival is strong confirmation of the causal relationship between this treatment and improvement in survival rate, the researchers say.

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