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Hydroxychloroquine should not be used to prevent or treat COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) advised this week. The anti-inflammatory drug was once touted by former President Donald Trump, who said he was take the treatment to avoid contracting coronavirus last spring.

A WHO expert panel found that the drug had no significant effect on deaths or hospitalizations from the coronavirus. They added that he might even increase the risk unwanted effects.

With great certainty, “the guideline development committee made a strong recommendation against the use of hydroxychloroquine for people who do not have covid-19,” the committee wrote in the committee medical journal. reading The BMJ Tuesday.

“The panel decided that not everyone would find this drug interesting.”

The evidence led to six randomized controlled trials that included more than 6,000 people – with or without known exposure to the virus.


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The panel said hydroxychloroquine is no longer seen as a research priority and that researchers should refocus their efforts on other promising preventative drugs. He added that more than 80 trials planning to enroll at least 100,000 participants in further research on hydroxychloroquine are unlikely to find any benefit and should be canceled.

The drug, which is used to treat malaria, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, rose to prominence when Mr Trump and other members of his administration heavily promoted it. The former president contracted the virus in October, and received unauthorized monoclonal antibody treatment at Walter Reed Medical Center.

The FDA initially issued emergency use authorization for the drug last March. He withdrew the authorization in June, after determining that the drug was “unlikely to be effective in treating COVID-19 for permitted uses.”

Federal regulators had previously warned against the use of hydroxychloroquine except in hospitals and formal studies because of the risk of side effects, especially heart rhythm problems.

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