India is currently reeling under the impact of the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic that has led to an alarming surge in daily cases. Amid the massive surge in the COVID-19 cases across India, people are looking out for tips on self-care and treatment options for people severely affected by COVID-19 disease.
While scientists worldwide are working to find and develop treatments for COVID-19, optimal supportive care includes antiviral drugs and other drugs, including plasma therapy. Other supportive care for severely ill patients includes oxygen for those at risk for severe disease and advanced respiratory support like ventilation for critically ill patients.
Treatment options for COVID-19
Here are some of the medicines doctors use for people hospitalized with COVID-19.
Please note, we do not recommend self-medication with any drugs, including antibiotics, as a prevention or cure for COVID-19 unless advised by a qualified doctor.
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The FDA approved remdesivir, an antiviral drug, in October 2020 to treat coronavirus infection. The green signal was given based on the data that indicated that a select group of hospitalized pateints who were administered remdesivir showed improvement in their symptoms and recovered faster.
In India, the DCGI (Drug Controller General of India) approved remdesivir lyophilized (in powder form) for emergency treatment of hospitalized people.The drug can be given to children above the age of 12, weighing a minimum of 40 kgs, and adults, provided they have been hospitalized.
Since the pandemic started, doctors have been using corticosteroids to treat critically ill COVID-19-infected people. This drug is effective for people experiencing a cytokine storm (hyper-immune reaction). In such cases, the hyperactive immune system of a person damages the lungs and other body parts, often leading to life-threatening complications.
Dexamethasone and similar corticosteroids make potent anti-inflammatory medication choices. These are easily available and reasonably priced.
Baricitinib with Remdesivir
According to a clinical trial, baricitinib and remdesivir make a promising combination when treating COVID-19. Baricitinib is an anti-inflammatory medicine. When it is combined with remdesivir, it helps reduce the recovery time in hospitalized people. While the combination shows positive results, more clinical studies are needed.
Anticoagulation Drugs or Blood Thinners
Most people who need hospitalization for COVID-19 treatment get medications to prevent blood clots. According to a recent study, preventive blood thinners are likely to reduce fatalities in COVID cases.
Monoclonal Antibody (mAB) Treatments
Monoclonal antibodies are lab-made variants of the antibodies naturally made by our body to fight foreign particles, such as the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The mAB treatment is likely to reduce the chances of developing severe COVID-19 symptoms.
Convalescent Plasma Therapy
People who have already recovered from the coronavirus infection develop antibodies in their blood that helped them fight the virus and recover. Convalescent plasma therapy uses the blood products (plasma) of the recovered patients to treat coronavirus-infected people. It is safe and widely used.
These are some of the most commonly used treatment options for COVID-19 worldwide. Moreover, after extensive research scientists have found some feasible vaccines for humans. The vaccination drive has already started. Do your part, get vaccinated.