To treat Covid-19, President Trump is taking remdesivir, dexamethasone and more

While many questions stay in regards to the President’s situation and when he was first recognized with the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, right here is what has been revealed to this point about what he was been handled with — and when.

On Friday afternoon, the White House stated in a letter that President Donald Trump was handled with an 8-gram dose of the experimental antibody remedy cocktail made by the biotechnology firm Regeneron.

To make its monoclonal antibody remedy, Regeneron scientists chosen two antibodies that finest neutralized a model of the novel coronavirus within the lab. Antibodies are proteins the physique makes to combat an infection. The scientists copied these two antibodies to make a therapy for Covid-19.

The investigational cocktail, known by its investigational name REGN-COV2, has been in medical trials since June. On Tuesday, the corporate introduced early information from a trial with 275 non-hospitalized sufferers exhibiting the therapy was secure and appeared to scale back viral ranges and enhance signs. The information, issued through information launch, haven’t been peer-reviewed.

The best enhancements had been seen in sufferers who had not mounted a pure response to the coronavirus an infection.

The therapy additionally appeared to scale back the necessity for medical visits for the sufferers, none of whom had been sick sufficient to be hospitalized at the beginning of this trial, in line with Regeneron.

More affected person information will have to be analyzed to know for positive how properly the therapy works.

Regeneron’s remedy is not accredited for any use and has not obtained emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration — however Regeneron is in talks with regulators to see if the FDA would think about an EUA.

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The New York-based firm confirmed that it supplied the drug beneath a “compassionate use” request from the President’s physicians, however didn’t specify when it obtained the request. “There is limited product available for compassionate use requests that have been approved under rare, exceptional circumstances on a case-by-case basis,” Regeneron stated in an announcement launched Friday. These requests should be initiated by a doctor.

Some might be able to obtain the therapy as a part of a medical trial, the place they could obtain the remedy or a placebo, or dummy therapy.


President Trump is being given a five-day course of the antiviral drug remdesivir, one of many docs treating him stated throughout a briefing on Saturday. The therapy is meant to shorten restoration time for Covid-19 sufferers.

“Yesterday evening he received his first dose of IV remdesivir and our plan is to continue a five-day treatment course for remdesivir,” Dr. Brian Garibaldi, one of many staff of docs treating Trump on the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, advised reporters on Saturday.

READ: White House physician says Trump is taking Remdesivir and 'doing very well'
In a Phase 3 clinical trial,remdesivir was discovered to hurry restoration in reasonably ailing sufferers with pneumonia from Covid-19, in line with outcomes published in the medical journal JAMA in August.

The trial included almost 600 sufferers randomly assigned to obtain both the present customary of take care of Covid-19; a five-day course of remdesivir along with the present customary of care; or 10 days of the drug plus care. The restoration of every affected person was tracked and examined.

The research discovered sufferers with reasonable Covid-19 who obtained a five-day course of remdesivir had been more prone to get higher after 11 days in comparison with those that obtained customary care alone.

In May, remdesivir became the first therapy drug issued an emergency use authorization for Covid-19 within the United States.
The FDA initially licensed the emergency use of remdesivir for Covid-19 in May, however solely to treat sufferers with extreme coronavirus who wanted further oxygen or mechanical air flow to assist their respiration. Then on August 28, the FDA extended the emergency use authorization for remdesivir to all sufferers hospitalized with Covid-19, whatever the severity of their illness.
This type of FDA authorization implies that physicians can administer the drug to their Covid-19 sufferers as an emergency therapy.


President Trump was given the corticosteroid drug dexamethasone on Saturday after his oxygen degree transiently dipped, White House doctor Dr. Sean Conley stated throughout a briefing on Sunday.

“We decided that in this case the potential benefits early on in the course probably outweighed the risks,” Conley stated.

Trump's Covid-19 so far has caused high fever and drops in oxygen, doctors say

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, chief of infectious illnesses at Massachusetts General Hospital, stated the usage of dexamethasone for Trump’s care had some “scratching our heads.”

“Generally you start the dexamethasone when you’re starting to worry that they’re heading down the wrong path,” Walenksy stated. “So, what happened today? Either he progressed or people are like, well, let’s just throw the kitchen sink at him.

“It’s unclear to me why they might have given him that if he didn’t require supplemental oxygen.”

The drug is typically given to patients on supplemental oxygen or needing ventilation.

In the United States, dexamethasone has been used to treat some Covid-19 sufferers since early on within the pandemic — however some doctors previously have warned “it is not a therapy for delicate illness.”
Trump is taking dexamethasone for his Covid-19. That could be serious, doctors say
In June, preliminary results from a large, randomized study in the United Kingdom found that a low-dose regimen of dexamethasone for 10 days reduced deaths by a third among hospitalized patients requiring ventilation.

That trial included about 6,400 hospitalized Covid-19 patients, a third of whom who were randomized to receive dexamethasone, and the rest given the usual standard of care at their hospitals.

In the early trial, dexamethasone was provided at a dose of 6 mg once a day for up to 10 days, either as an injection or orally. The researchers reported no serious adverse events among the patients taking dexamethasone.

The National Institutes of Health says in its guidelines on treating coronavirus infections that “sufferers with extreme Covid-19 can develop a systemic (all-of-body) inflammatory response that may result in lung damage and multisystem organ dysfunction.” Based on the results of this one trial, the NIH panel of experts recommended giving dexamethasone to Covid-19 patients who need oxygen.

“The Panel recommends in opposition to utilizing dexamethasone for the therapy of Covid-19 in sufferers who don’t require supplemental oxygen,” the NIH guidelines read.

In the study on dexamethasone, about 23% of patients who got dexamethasone died, compared to about 26% of those who did not.

“No survival profit was seen amongst contributors who didn’t require oxygen remedy at enrollment,” the NIH said. There’s a reason for this — the drug reduces inflammation, but in doing so, can impair the body’s ability to fight off infection.

Steroids are widely available and already commonly used to treat seriously ill Covid-19 patients.

Supplemental oxygen

After previously telling reporters on Saturday that Trump “is not on oxygen proper now,” White House doctor Conley stated throughout a briefing on Sunday that the President had been given supplemental oxygen and had two episodes of transient drops in his oxygen level.

Late Friday morning, “the President had a excessive fever and his oxygen saturation was transiently dipping beneath 94%,” Conley said. A normal blood oxygen saturation level is 95% or higher.

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The President initially was “pretty adamant that he did not want” oxygen. “He was not wanting breath. He was drained, had the fever, and that was about it,” Conley said.

However, the President was given oxygen.

“And after a couple of minute on solely two liters, his saturation ranges had been again over 95%. He stayed on that for about an hour possibly, and was off and gone,” Conley stated.

Oxygen therapy, or supplemental oxygen, is a treatment that delivers oxygen gas for patients to breathe who may have difficulty breathing. Oxygen can be delivered through tubes resting in the nose, a face mask or tube placed in the trachea or windpipe.

The NIH notes that hypoxemia, or a low level of oxygen in the blood, is common in Covid-19 patients.

Zinc, vitamin D, famotidine, melatonin and daily aspirin

On Friday afternoon, Conley said in a White House letter that Trump also has taken zinc, vitamin D, the heartburn drug famotidine, melatonin and a daily aspirin.

Zinc is a nutrient naturally found in the body that helps the immune system fight off outside bacteria and viruses — but while zinc supplements are often taken to reduce the length of colds, there is no evidence that they can be used to treat Covid-19.

The FDA has issued warning letters to some companies that have tried to claim there is a link between their zinc products and reduced risk of Covid-19.
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As for vitamin D, it is good for bone health and can be absorbed through food, sunlight and supplements and is appropriate for those who are deficient — but there is no evidence that vitamin D will directly reduce the risk of Covid-19. The FDA also has issued warning letters to some companies tying to sell their vitamin D products to reduce risk of Covid-19 or treat illness.

Taking too much vitamin D can lead to a toxic buildup of calcium in the blood, causing confusion, disorientation and problems with heart rhythm, as well as bone pain, kidney damage and painful kidney stones.

Common heartburn drug may have helped 10 patients at home with Covid-19

The White House letter additionally famous that the President has been taking famotidine, generally used to treat ulcers, heartburn and indigestion by lowering the quantity of acid within the abdomen.

Ten Covid-19 sufferers who had been taking the drug whereas treating their sickness at dwelling might have discovered reduction, in line with a research printed in June within the medical journal Gut. Famotidine is the energetic ingredient in Pepcid AC.

A coauthor of the research emphasised that it was in a small group of sufferers.

More analysis is wanted to find out the efficacy of famotidine as a possible Covid-19 therapy.

Melatonin was additionally given to the President and more analysis is wanted to find out its potential advantages for Covid-19 sufferers, however some research counsel it may assist Covid-19 sufferers who even have diabetes and weight problems.

A paper published in the European Journal of Pharmacology reviewed previously published studies on melatonin — a hormone that the brain produces — and its effects on viruses, obesity, diabetes and inflammation.
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“A standard development exists between the elevated variety of SARS-COV-2-infected circumstances and the low ranges of blood melatonin in individuals with power metabolic illnesses and aged individuals,” the researchers, from Mansoura University in Egypt wrote in the paper.

“The skill of melatonin to lower viral infections in overweight and diabetic sufferers is attributed to its traits akin to potent antioxidant results, enhancing the endogenous antioxidant system, immunomodulatory, and the robust anti-inflammatory functionality,” the researchers wrote.

As for aspirin, the over-the-counter drug may also help cut back the chance of blood clotting — and proof has proven that Covid-19 can trigger the formation of blood clots in some sufferers.
Studies at Xijing Hospital in China and Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans are investigating attainable results aspirin may have in Covid-19 sufferers.

It’s not clear what dose of aspirin Trump was taking and whether or not he had already been taking it. Many persons are prescribed low-dose aspirin for coronary heart well being.

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