The antiviral drug remdesivir shouldn’t be used to treat Covid-19 patients, no matter how severe their illness is, as it has “no major impact” on chances of survival, the World Health Organization said on Friday.
A WHO guideline development group (GDG) of international experts scratched one of the few treatments that initially showed promise in severe patients, saying there was “no evidence, based on the data currently available, that it improves patient outcomes”.
The United States, the European Union, and other countries granted temporary approval to use remdesivir after initial research showed it can shorten recovery time in some coronavirus patients.
US President Donald Trump was treated with remdesivir, among other things, after testing positive for Covid-19 in October.
Friday’s WHO recommendation was based on four international randomized trials of more than 7,000 patients hospitalized with the virus.
The panel published updated treatment guidelines in the BMJ Medical Journal, acknowledging that their recommendation does not mean that remdesivir will not be of benefit to patients.
However, based on the latest numbers, costs and administration methods, it has been advised against “adding remdesivir to the usual treatment of patients hospitalized with Covid-19 regardless of the severity of the disease”.
Manufacturer Gilead said last month that the drug increased sales by nearly $ 900 million in the third quarter of 2020.
Remdesivir was originally developed to treat the Ebola virus and was found in a study published in May to reduce the length of hospital stays for Covid-19 patients from an average of 15 to 11 days.
However, a later WHO form found that the drug appeared to have “little or no effect on mortality or length of hospital stay” in more than 11,000 hospital patients in 30 countries.
(This story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)