Dr Fauci says all ‘valid’ scientific data shows hydroxychloroquine is not effective in treating coronavirus

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National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr.Anthony Fauci testifies before the hearing of the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions to examine COVID-19, “Focusing on lessons learned to prepare for the next pandemic,” at Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on June 23, 2020.Kevin Dietsch | Piscine | AFP | Getty Images

White House coronavirus adviser Dr Anthony Fauci said on Wednesday that all “valid” scientific data shows that the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine is not effective in treating coronavirus, contradicting opinion of President Donald Trump on the drug.“You look at the science and the evidence. And the scientific data … on valid trials, which have been randomized and properly controlled, all of these trials consistently show that hydroxychloroquine is not effective in treating coronavirus. disease or Covid-19, ”said the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in an interview on MSNBC.

Fauci’s comment came a day after Trump said he still believed hydroxychloroquine to work against Covid-19.

At a press conference on Tuesday evening, Trump was asked by a reporter about a video the president shared on Twitter that went viral on social media platforms that claimed hydroxychloroquine was “a cure for Covid And “you don’t need a mask” to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The video was later tagged as containing misleading information and has since been removed.

“I wasn’t making claims,” Trump said of his tweet, noting that he was passing on recommendations from other people, including doctors.

“A lot of doctors think hydroxychloroquine coupled with zinc and maybe azithromycin is extremely effective,” he said. “Many doctors think it’s extremely good, and some don’t. ”

“I happen to believe it. I would take it. As you know, I took it for a period of 14 days. And as you know, I am here. I think it works at the very beginning, ”he told me.

Trump insisted the drug was safe, saying he had “no problems” when taking it.

There are no FDA approved drugs for the coronavirus. The agency has granted emergency clearance for remdesivir, an antiviral drug, to treat Covid-19, but that’s not the same as formal approval. Last month, the FDA withdrew hydroxychloroquine’s authorization for emergency use after determining it was “unlikely” to be effective in treating people with Covid-19.

In addition to treating malaria, hydroxychloroquine is often used by doctors to treat rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. It is known to have serious side effects in some patients, including muscle weakness and cardiac arrhythmia.

The drug generated excitement earlier in the year after a handful of small studies suggesting it may be of benefit, especially when combined with an antibiotic azithromycin. Trump has promoted it as a potential treatment for the virus and said he has used it as a preventative measure against the disease. However, several larger randomized, placebo-controlled trials have shown that the drug is not helpful and causes heart problems in some patients.

Fauci said on Wednesday that the public should “follow the science,” adding that “if a study that is good comes out and shows the efficacy and safety of hydroxychloroquine or any other drug that we make … you are accepting the scientific data. . ”

“Right now, today, the cumulative scientific data that has been put together and performed in a number of different studies has shown no effectiveness,” he said.

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