(AscendHealthy.com) – The fight against COVID-19 has had a lot of ups and downs, but every turn has moved us a little closer toward real answers. Even diagnostic and treatment setbacks have served to fill in some of the missing puzzle pieces, and we’ve come a long way in figuring out what, exactly, we’re looking at and how the puzzle pieces fit.
Two arthritis medications could be among the key pieces researchers have sought. We have the latest news on this potentially life-saving breakthrough.
These Two Common Drugs Might Turn the Tables on COVID-19.
New Strategy Against “Cytokine Storms”
An article recently released in the British Medical Journal detailed studies on two different arthritis medications, tocilizumab and sarilumab, for use against COVID-19. According to these most recent findings, which analyzed over 800 patient outcomes, tocilizumab reduced hospital mortality by 7.8%; sarilumab did so by 13.6%. Combined, these medications may also reduce the time patients spend hospitalized by 7-10 days.
These medications target the production of specific pro-inflammatory cytokines, which often contribute to arthritis symptoms. In COVID-19, researchers believe cytokines may be responsible for the respiratory distress and other inflammatory issues seen in severe cases. In theory, keeping cytokine numbers down with the help of medications like tocilizumab and sarilumab could be a powerful new strategy against the pandemic.
US Still Not Onboard
Doctors in the UK have begun to treat severely ill patients with these medications, but it may be a while before we see widespread use in the United States. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), many human trials on tocilizumab, sarilumab and similar medications have been promising — and others have offered mixed results.
The NIH, along with the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), believes it’s too early to begin their use on COVID-19 patients outside of clinical trials. A US study involving 1912 human subjects is currently underway; preliminary results will be issued soon.
We’re steadily adding new tools to our COVID-fighting toolbox, although the journey to find them hasn’t always been smooth. What’s important is that we continue making progress and moving forward. This newest breakthrough may or may not be a game-changer, but it could be a stepping stone toward bigger and better solutions.
~Here’s to Your Healthy Ascension
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