(QCOSTARICA) COVID-19 patients who are hospitalized may be prescribed dexamethasone, a steroid-type anti-inflammatory, as part of treatment, Health Minister Daniel Salas indicated on Tuesday.
The Minister said that dexamethasone has been shown to be effective in people who are going through a stage of inflammation.
Salas explained that the drug is not indicated for newly diagnosed patients and much less, must not be self-medicated.
Dexamethasone proves first life-saving drug
This Tuesday it was announced that dexamethasone reduces mortality by one third among the most severe COVID-19 patients, according to the first results of a large clinical trial. “Dexamethasone is the first medicine that we observed that improves survival in the case of COVID-19,” said those responsible for the British Recovery trial.
The BBC News reports that the drug is part of the world’s biggest trial testing existing treatments to see if they also work for coronavirus. It cut the risk of death by a third for patients on ventilators. For those on oxygen, it cut deaths by a fifth.
Had the drug had been used to treat patients in the UK from the start of the pandemic, up to 5,000 lives could have been saved, researchers say.
For its part, the World Health Organization (WHO) welcomes the initial clinical trial results from the United Kingdom (UK).
The World Health Organization (WHO) welcomes the initial clinical trial results from the United Kingdom (UK).
“This is the first treatment to be shown to reduce mortality in patients with COVID-19 requiring oxygen or ventilator support,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “This is great news and I congratulate the Government of the UK, the University of Oxford, and the many hospitals and patients in the UK who have contributed to this lifesaving scientific breakthrough.”