HealthDay News – Hydroxychloroquine does not improve outcomes in COVID-19, according to 2 studies published online May 14 in The BMJ.
Matthieu Mahévas, MD, PhD, from Paris-Est Créteil University, and colleagues examined the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine in 181 patients admitted with COVID-19 pneumonia who required oxygen but not intensive care. A total of 84 patients who received hydroxychloroquine within 48 hours of admission were compared to 89 patients who did not receive hydroxychloroquine. In addition, 8 patients received hydroxychloroquine more than 48 hours after admission. The researchers found that survival rates without transfer to the intensive care unit were 76 and 75% in the treatment and control groups, respectively (weighted hazard ratio, 0.9; 95% confidence interval, 0.4 to 2.1). At day 21, overall survival was 89 and 91% in the treatment and control groups, respectively (weighted hazard ratio, 1.2; 95% confidence interval, 0.4 to 3.3).
Wei Tang, from Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, and colleagues randomly assigned 150 patients (148 with mild-to-moderate disease; 2 with severe disease) admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 to either hydroxychloroquine plus standard of care or standard of care alone. Overall, 109 patients had negative conversion before 28 days; the probability of negative conversion by 28 days was 85.4 and 81.3% in the groups receiving standard of care plus hydroxychloroquine and standard of care alone, respectively (difference, 4.1%; 95% confidence interval, −10.3 to 18.5%).
“Overall, these data do not support the addition of hydroxychloroquine to the current standard of care in patients with persistent mild to moderate covid-19 for eliminating the virus,” Tang and colleagues write.