French doctor Didier Raoult – one of the main defenders of the use of hydroxychloroquine in the treatment of Covid-19 – admitted, for the first time, that the drug is not effective in reducing the number of deaths or worsening the disease caused by the new coronavirus. The recognition was made by the doctor in a letter published last January 4th on the website of the National Center for Information on Biotechnology, France.
In the text, which was signed by his team, the researcher points out that there were no significant differences in the number of deaths or ICU hospitalizations between patients treated with hydroxychloroquine and those who received conventional treatment against the disease.
The needs for oxygen therapy, transfer to the ICU and death did not differ significantly between the patients who received hydroxychloroquine with or without azithromycin and the controls performed only with standard treatment.
Use of hydroxychloroquine for early treatment of Covid-19
In March 2020, the doctor and researcher Didier Raoult “proved”, through a study of 49 people, the effectiveness of using hydroxychloroquine in the treatment of Covid-19. According to the professional, if combined with the administration of azithromycin and only for cases of patients in the initial stage of the disease.
According to the study, the drug – which is used to treat diseases like Lupus – would be effective in reducing the number of deaths and serious cases of Covid-19, which would need to be transferred to the ICU.
At the time, both the World Health Organization and scientists around the world criticized the research. According to them, the study was carried out outside scientific standards. As a result, the National Council of the Order of Doctors opened an investigation against the doctor and six other members of his team, who participated in the study.
Although he now recognizes that hydroxychloroquine is not effective in reducing the number of deaths caused by the new coronavirus, Raoult also points out that the administration of the drug can reduce the time needed for hospitalization: “we also calculated the time of hospitalization, which appeared to be significantly lower in patients treated with hydroxychloroquine alone or with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin, than in controls. ”