The drug, hydroxychloroquine, has been around for decades but was dumped in the area this spring when Trump began to mention its name several times in coronavirus adjustments. While it has not yet been approved for this use, and still is not, he urged Americans to “give it a try.”
Amid growing public attention on the drug, its sales doubled from March 2019 to more than $ 50 million in March of this year, according to market research firm IQVIA, which monitors prescriptions recorded by pharmaceutical companies including large chains and mail-order companies.
While the FDA recently warned against using drugs to treat coronavirus patients outside hospitals, that warning came after more than 830,000 prescriptions for the drug were filled for the generic and name-brand version of the drug, Plaquenil, in March ̵
1; from nearly 460,000 prescriptions written at the same time last year.
The IQVIA data does not yet include April numbers and does not capture prescriptions given to patients in nursing nurses through pharmaceutical care pharmacies or in hospitals. Data from Premier Inc, a health care purchasing company for more than 4,000 hospitals, shows that hospitals saw a 260% increase in hydroxychloroquine orders in March compared to average demand.
As sales increased, so did the investigation into the safety and effectiveness of the Covid-19 treatment drug.
Currently, the drug is FDA-approved only to treat or prevent malaria or treat autoimmune conditions such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. While the so-called off label prescribed by the drug to treat other conditions is legal, the federal government has not found it to be safe or effective for any other use.
The FDA warning says the agency is aware of reports of “serious heart-related and death-related adverse events in patients with COVID-19” taking hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine, a more toxic variant , either by themselves or in combination with other heart-stopping drugs such as azithromycin. The agency said in April that the drug should only be used for Covid-19 patients when they can be monitored in the hospital or enrolled in clinical trials. In a statement this week, the FDA Commissioner said “the decision to take any drug is ultimately a decision between a patient and their doctor.”
A study published earlier this month showed the drug did not help treat coronavirus and could actually cause cardiac arrest, and another study of hundreds of patients in hospital veterans found higher mortality rates in drug-treated patients compared to those who did not take it.
Meanwhile, the outgoing director of the office involved in developing a coronavirus vaccine, meanwhile, claimed in a whistleblower complaint that he was forced to take the widely available hydroxychloroquine and that he had been removed from his position after being promoted. concerns about it.
Just this week, Trump told reporters he was taking the drug – an announcement coming at a time when the medical community is worried about hydroxychloroquine deficiencies for patients who use it to treat others more serious conditions.
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