Combination of Ritonavir, Lopanivir & Ribavirin helps coronavirus patients recover more quickly, study finds
A combination of three antiviral drugs plus an system booster appeared to help patients recover more quickly from coronavirus infections, doctors in Hong Kong reported Friday.
They said the approach needs more testing but it could offer another treatment possibility for Covid-19 patients. Currently the sole authorized treatment is that the experimental antiviral remdesivir, which also shortens the duration of illness but is restricted in supply.
Dr. Kwok-Yung Yuen at Hong Kong University and colleagues tested the HIV drug combination of ritonavir and lopanivir along side the overall antiviral ribavirin and a MS drug called beta interferon.
Patients within the study all had mild to moderate symptoms and were treated within seven days of testing positive. Some doctors think treating patients earlier within the course of the infection could be better. Yuen’s team gave some patients only the HIV drug combination, often sold under the name Kaletra. Other were randomly assigned to urge the lopinavir-ritonavir combination plus the antiviral ribavirin and injections of beta interferon.
The patients who got the cocktail tested negative for coronavirus after seven days on the average . those that just got the HIV drugs were positive on the average for 12 days, the team reported within the Lancet medical journal.
Few side effects, study says
The patients given the cocktail also felt better quicker — within four days. “Early triple antiviral therapy was safe and superior to lopinavir-ritonavir alone in alleviating symptoms and shortening the duration of viral shedding and hospital stay in patients with mild to moderate COVID-19,” the researchers wrote.
There were few side effects, they added.
Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, who is treating coronavirus patients at the University of California San Francisco , said the study offers new hope within the pandemic. “This study is basically refreshing because it tells us remdesivir is not the only game in town and perhaps there are other options around,”
“These drugs have a diary of safety,” he said, adding they’re also easily available. Doctors and pharmacists have complained that they do not know which hospitals and clinics will get remdesivir, which was given US Food and Drug Administration emergency use authorization after it had been shown to scale back the duration of illness in Covid-19 patients.
Chin-Hong said the Lancet study showed the likelihood of other treatments. “Maybe we will get this once we can’t get the alleged remedy ,” he said. Many groups are testing various combinations of medicine against coronavirus. Nothing is probably going to be a cure, doctors agree.
“In Covid-19 we do not have the posh of your time ,” Chin-Hong said. “This is one among the treatment options where we are teaching old drugs new tricks. we do not have the time to require a drug rationally from starting to end because we’ve a crisis immediately . we’ve to form do with what we’ve .”
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