Donald Trump’s anti-coronavirus drug of choice, hydroxychloroquine, does not work, to absolutely no-one’s surprise. Dutch research has backed up a British study showing the ineffectiveness of the drug.
Hydroxychloroquine, also favoured by President Bolsonaro of Brazil, was trialled in Dutch hospitals treating coronavirus patients. The drug was already removed from treatment protocols in the Netherlands in May because of its negative effect on heart health. Now, the Dutch study, led by Jonne Sikkens, shows that the effect of the drug on coronavirus patients was pretty negligible.
A previous, smaller study based in Amsterdam appeared to show that hydroxychloroquine had a negative impact on coronavirus patient mortality. However, it is possible that this was simply because the patients to whom the drug was administered were sicker. This new study shows no statistically significant improvement in recovery with the use of the drug. A much larger sample size, covering nine hospitals, means that the results of the research are more trustworthy.
The results of this study are unsurprising, says Mark de Boer, internist and chairman of the Antibiotic Policy Working Group (SWAB), because an earlier large study in the UK also saw no positive effects of the drug. “It is reassuring that we now see the same picture in the Netherlands.”
Will we see a u-turn on the use of this drug in the US and Brazil? Let us know your predictions in the comments below.
Feature Image: DutchReview/Canva