“Dexamethasone” added to COVID-19 treatment protocol

Published: June 29, 2020

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare recently included the use of steroid Dexamethasone in COVID-19 treatment. The ministry has also recommended the use of Remdesivir on patients that are moderately ill. Hydroxychloroquine is to be used during early course of the disease.

Highlights

The new COVID-19 treatment protocol of the health ministry says that Methylprednisolone (0.5 to 1 mg/kg) or Dexamethasone (0.1 to 0.2 mg/kg) shall be used during the early course of treatment if the patient is critically ill.

About Dexamethasone

The drug us a corticosteroid drug that is used widely for its anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressant effects. The drug has been tested at the Oxford University Recovery Clinical Trial of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

Clinical Trial of Dexamethasone

The drug has proved its efficacy on critically ill patients at the university. It had shown one-third reduction in mortality rate of COVID-19 patients on ventilators. Also, the drug has shown on-third reduction in mortality rate of COVID-19 patients on oxygen supply.

National List of Essential Medicines

In India, the drug is a part of the National List of Essential Medicines. The list was prepared by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in 1996. The list consisted of 279 medicines when it was created. It was updated in 2003 and 2011. In 2018, the list was updated again and it now holds 851 medicines. This includes 4 medical devices namely drug eluting stents, cardiac stents, condoms and intra uterine devices.

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