WHO Advises Against These 2 COVID-19 Treatments; Check Latest Recommendations

New Delhi: COVID-19 pandemic is under control, but has still not been erased completely.

In such a scenario, two COVID-19 antibody treatments are no longer recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO, reported PTI.

Omicron and its subvariants, which are dominating all over the globe, have rendered these treatments obsolete, according to a revised guideline published in the British Medical Journal.

WHO has made a conditional recommendation for the use of antiviral drug remdesivir in patients with severe COVID-19, and a conditional recommendation against its use in critically affected patients.

The WHO Guideline Development Group of international experts have said that antibody drugs sotrovimab and casirivimab-imdevimab are no longer recommended for COVID-positive patients.

These drugs work by binding to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein – which helps the virus to enter the cells – neutralising its ability to infect.

The “strong” recommendation replaces previous conditional recommendations for their use and is based on evidence from studies that these drugs are unlikely to work against variants like Omicron.

The recommendations are based on randomised trials involving 7,643 patients. The results showed 13 fewer deaths per 1,000 patients with severe COVID-19 taking remdesivir, but 34 more deaths per 1,000 patients with critical COVID-19 taking the drug.

WHO has also advised that three drugs used to treat arthritis — IL-6 receptor blockers tocilizumab or sarilumab and the JAK inhibitor baricitinib — may now be combined, in addition to corticosteroids, to treat patients with severe or critical COVID-19.

WHO has further advised against use of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine in patients with COVID-19 regardless of disease severity, the panel added.

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