Hydroxychloroquine has not been shown to be effective as a postexposure prophylaxis for COVID-19. This is stated in the results of a randomized trial published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
A study conducted by scientists from the University of Minnesota (USA) was based on an experiment involving 821 patients who had been in contact with coronavirus patients for 10 minutes or longer. It is believed that most of them – 719 – were at “high risk” because they did not use protective masks and gloves. All participants in the study were randomly prescribed the use of hydroxychloroquine or placebo, a substance without obvious therapeutic benefit.
It turned out that 49 of the 414 people who received the popular drug contracted the coronavirus. In the placebo group, COVID-19 was diagnosed in 58 of 407 patients. The proportion of infected among those taking hydroxychloroquine was 11.83 versus 14.25 percent of the study participants who received placebo. Side effects in the group with this drug and placebo were 40.1 and 18.6 percent, respectively, but without serious consequences in both groups. Thus, scientists have proved the futility of hydroxychloroquine in the prevention of the disease.
“A randomized trial did not demonstrate the significant benefits of hydroxychloroquine as a postexposure prophylaxis for COVID-19,” the authors said.
On May 25, the World Health Organization (WHO) suspended trials of the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine used to treat coronavirus. Earlier, American doctors analyzed the data of more than 96 thousand patients with COVID-19 and found that hydroxychloroquine not only does not show effectiveness, but also increases mortality.