Low Dose of Hydroxychloroquine Reduces Fatality of Critically Ill Patients With COVID-19
Yu et al.
, Low Dose of Hydroxychloroquine Reduces Fatality of Critically Ill Patients With COVID-19
, Science China Life Sciences, 2020 May 15, 1-7, doi:10.1007/s11427-020-1732-2
Retrospective, 550 critically ill patients. 19% fatality for HCQ versus 47% for non-HCQ, RR 0.395, p
The levels of inflammatory cytokine IL-6 were significantly reduced from 22.2 pg/mL to 5.2 pg/mL (p
<0.05) at the end of the treatment in the HCQ group but there was no change in the control group.
risk of death, 60.5% lower, RR 0.40, p = 0.002, treatment 9 of 48 (18.8%), control 238 of 502 (47.4%), NNT 3.5.
Effect extraction follows pre-specified rules prioritizing more serious outcomes. Submit updates
Yu et al., 15 May 2020, retrospective, China, peer-reviewed, 8 authors.
Abstract: SCIENCE CHINA
October 2020 Vol.63 No.10: 1515–1521
Low dose of hydroxychloroquine reduces fatality of critically ill
patients with COVID-19
Bo Yu , Chenze Li , Peng Chen , Ning Zhou , Luyun Wang , Jia Li , Hualiang Jiang
Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine and Hubei Key Laboratory of Genetics and Molecular Mechanisms of Cardiological
Disorders, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430030, China;
State Key Laboratory of Drug Research, Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 201203, China;
Shanghai Institute for Advanced Immunochemical Studies and School of Life Science and Technology, Shanghai Tech University, Shanghai
Received April 23, 2020; accepted May 12, 2020; published online May 15, 2020
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a pandemic with no specific drugs and high fatality. The most urgent need is to find
effective treatments. We sought to determine whether hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) application may reduce the death risk of
critically ill COVID-19 patients. In this retrospective study, we included 550 critically ill COVID-19 patients who need
mechanical ventilation in Tongji Hospital, Wuhan, from February 1, 2020 to April 4, 2020. All 550 patients received comparable
basic treatments including antiviral drugs and antibiotics, and 48 of them were treated with oral HCQ treatment (200 mg twice a
day for 7–10 days) in addition to the basic treatments. Primary endpoint is fatality of patients, and inflammatory cytokine levels
were compared between HCQ and non-hydroxychloroquine (NHCQ) treatments. We found that fatalities are 18.8% (9/48) in
HCQ group, which is significantly lower than 47.4% (238/502) in the NHCQ group (P<0.001). The time of hospital stay before
patient death is 15 (10–21) days and 8 (4–14) days for the HCQ and NHCQ groups, respectively (P<0.05). The levels of
inflammatory cytokine IL-6 were significantly reduced from 22.2 (8.3–118.9) pg mL at the beginning of the treatment to 5.2
(3.0–23.4) pg mL (P<0.05) at the end of the treatment in the HCQ group but there is no change in the NHCQ group. These data
demonstrate that addition of HCQ on top of the basic treatments is highly effective in reducing the fatality of critically ill patients
of COVID-19 through attenuation of inflammatory cytokine storm. Therefore, HCQ should be prescribed as a part of treatment
for critically ill COVID-19 patients, with possible outcome of saving lives.
hydroxychloroquine, IL-6, mortalities, COVID-19
Yu, B., Li, C., Chen, P., Zhou, N., Wang, L., Li, J., Jiang, H., and Wang, D.W. (2020). Low dose of hydroxychloroquine reduces fatality of critically ill
patients with COVID-19. Sci China Life Sci 63, 1515–1521. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11427-020-1732-2
is less effective
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