Wednesday, June 3, 2020 1:45 pm
By Nehru Odeh
Ibuprofen is a drug that many, especially the aged, easily grab because of its anti inflammatory uses. But now it’s assuming more importance in this age of the novel coronavirus. .
According to Sky News the drug is being tested to know whether it can prevent severe breathing problems in coronavirus patients and reduce the number of people needing treatment in intensive care units.
Researchers at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital and King’s College London are researching whether “a specific form” of the drug can help alleviate side effects from COVID-19 and reduce hospital stays.
This latest development is the reverse of what politicians in France had thought about the drug. They had believed that it worsen the symptoms of coronavirus patients.
The health minister of France, Olivier Véran, once warned people illl with coronavirus against taking painkillers Stay away from drugs like ibuprofen and aspirin. Take acetaminophen instead, he advised in a tweet. So-called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen worsened symptoms of the illness caused by the coronavirus, he said.
Professor Mitul Mehta, while expressing his views, however, stressed that only hospitalised patients would be involved in the trial – to see if the drug will “reduce the respiratory problems they have”, and not those who are so ill that they need to be in intensive care. If successful, there would be a “number of benefits”
“We could reduce the amount of time that someone spends in hospital – they might recover quicker and go home, that’s obviously a fantastic outcome.
“We also might be reducing the degree of respiratory distress so that it can be managed in the hospital setting, without needing to go to ICU, and that is a fantastic outcome as well.
“Theoretically, this treatment, given at this time, should be beneficial”
Professor Mehta, however, said this was based on “animal studies”.
“It’s based on case reports, we need to do a trial to show that the evidence actually matches what we expect to happen.”
He said animal studies into acute respiratory distress syndrome – a symptom of COVID-19 – suggests that around 80% of animals die with it.