A French peer-reviewed study found that 100% of COVID-19 patients treated with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin were “virologicaly cured” of the disease.
The study was headed by Didier Raoult of Aix-Marseille University and involved 36 patients who completed the study. 20 of the patients were given hydroxychloroquine, an analog of the cheap and widely available malaria drug chloroquine, and 16 control patients were not given the drug. Six of the patients given hydroxychloroquine were also given azithromycin, which is often sold as the popular antibiotic Zithromax.
Hydroxychloroquine was shown to be effective against COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. 57.1% of patients given hydroxychloroquine alone were “virologicaly cured” after six days of treatment compared to 12.5% of the control group.
The hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin combination proved even more effective. All six patients given this combination were “virologicaly cured” after six days of treatment.
“We show here that hydroxychloroquine is efficient in clearing viral nasopharyngeal carriage of SARS-CoV-2 in COVID-19 patients in only three to six days, in most patients,” the study said, adding, “our preliminary results also suggest a synergistic effect of the combination of
hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin… we therefore recommend that COVID-19 patients be treated with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin to cure their infection and to limit the transmission of the virus to other people in order to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the world.”
The hydroxychloroquine treatment in the study involved patients being given 200mg of oral hydroxychloroquine three times per day.
Australian researchers also recently called chloroquine, along with the HIV drug Kaletra, a “cure” for COVID-19. They noted that both of these drugs eliminated the SARS-CoV-2 virus from test tubes and that Kaletra caused a “disappearance of the virus” in COVID-19 patients treated with it.
President Trump announced today that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will make chloroquine available “almost immediately” for “compassionate use” which means doctors will be able to request permission from the FDA to use it as an experimental COVID-19 treatment.
“I have directed the FDA to eliminate rules and bureaucracy so work can proceed rapidly, quickly and fast,” Trump said.
Trump said chloroquine has shown “very, very encouraging early results. And we’re going to be able to make that drug available almost immediately.”
Trump pointed out chloroquine’s long-established safety profile, saying “we know if things don’t go as planned, it’s not going to kill anybody.”