Inflammatory drug Colchicine found to be effective against COVID-19 complications

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
Colchicine Image
Representational Image

The global response against the coronavirus pandemic has received a significant catalyst as a major clinical trial conducted by the doctors at the Montreal Heart Institute, Canada revealed that colchicine, an inflammatory drug has been found effective in treating COVID-19 and reduces the risk of complications from the infection.

The results of the 4,488 patient-study are being deemed as a “major scientific discovery” as colchicine, a medicine used to treat gout becomes “the world’s first oral drug that could be used to treat non-hospitalized patients with COVID-19.”

The study which was was carried out in Canada, the US, Europe and South America has shown that the use of colchicine reduced by 21 percent the risk of death or hospitalizations in patients with COVID-19 compared to those who were given a placebo.

Promising Results 

The study revealed that the use of colchicine on COVID-19 patients (diagnosed for coronavirus by a nasopharyngeal PCR test), decreased hospitalizations by 25 percent, the need for mechanical ventilation by 50 percent, and deaths by 44 percent.

Colchicine is medicated to effectively prevent dangerous inflammatory syndromes called “cytokine storms” and reducing complications associated with COVID-19.

Sharing his excitement about the results, Dr. Jean-Claude Tardif, Director of the MHI Research Center and Principal Investigator for the Study stated that “We are pleased to offer the first oral medication in the world whose use could have a significant impact on public health and potentially prevent COVID-19 complications for millions of patients,”

The study was conducted among COVID-19 patients who were not hospitalized at the time of enrollment in the trial, and with at least one risk factor for COVID-19 complications.

“This is the world’s largest study testing an orally administered drug in non-hospitalized patients with COVID-19,” the Montreal Heart Institute remarked in its statement.

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