Researchers and doctors are searching for effective treatments for this coronavirus, but the work has just begun. Know that there is no treatment for Covid-19 that has proven to be safe and effective.
Chloroquine and the closely related drug hydroxychloroquine have been around for decades. Chloroquine is used to treat malaria and hydroxychloroquine is used to treat autoimmune conditions such as lupus. The drugs, generally considered to be safe for most patients, can have side effects including seizures, nausea, vomiting, deafness, vision changes and low blood pressure. DO NOT TAKE THESE DRUGS without medical supervision.
Chloroquine is being fast-tracked for clinical testing as a treatment for COVID-19, however, it can have deadly side effects — particularly if accidentally ingested by children.
There is limited evidence, partly from studies on human cells, that they could have antiviral effects — one hypothesis being that they could make it harder for the novel coronavirus to bind to human cells.
Remdesivir is another experimental drug being trialed. The antiviral has been used for other coronaviruses, SARS and MERS, as well as Ebola.
Doctors in China, France, the United States, and other countries are using the drugs experimentally in Covid-19 patients, but there is not yet sufficient clinical evidence that it’s effective in humans. That’s why trials are needed. They take time and we do not have the answers yet.
“Using untested drugs without the right evidence could raise false hope and even do more harm than good and cause a shortage of essential drugs that are needed to treat other diseases,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Monday.
As a doctor, it’s hard to hear my colleagues on the frontlines of the pandemic pleading for more masks and gowns so they can stay protected. While the federal government has mobilized industry to make more masks, I keep hearing stories of people stepping in and donating masks and gowns. Fashion designers are sewing masks and engineers are making them with 3D printers. It’s truly amazing to hear how people are stepping in to try and help.
But, here’s the thing — you don’t have to have a 3D printer to help. All you have to do is stay at home. Stay home and you reduce your chances of contracting or spreading the virus. While many people are heeding this advice on their own, more than a dozen states have issued orders essentially requiring residents to stay at home. As of today, with more state orders in effect, more than 40% of the US population is now officially being urged to stay home.
Now, staying at home doesn’t mean everything is shutting down. Essential services such as groceries, pharmacies, gas stations, food banks, convenience stores, and delivery restaurants have remained open in many states, as have banks, law enforcement agencies, and some local government offices.
If you do need to be among other people, limit your gatherings to no more than 10 people and remember to keep 6 feet between yourself and others.
RRHD has confirmed the first positive case of COVID-19 in Madison County. If you have general questions about COVID-19, please call our hotline at 540-316-6302. For the latest on COVID-19, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus.
Please continue to avoid groups larger than 10, wash your hands, clean and disinfect surfaces, and stay home when you’re sick. Help us flatten the curve.
To stop the spread of coronavirus, health officials have instructed the public to practice social distancing — staying home, avoiding crowds and refraining from touching one another.
Although living like that can be lonely, inconvenient and even frightening, it’s for the greater good, says Danielle Ompad, an associate professor at New York University’s School of Global Public Health.
“It’s uncomfortable,” she told CNN. “But it requires us to be good citizens. People have to learn how to think about the collective rather than the individual.”
To help you do that, we answered your biggest questions about social distancing…
According to a recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, can live in the air and on surfaces between several hours and several days. The study found that the virus is viable for up to 72 hours on plastics, 48 hours on stainless steel, 24 hours on cardboard, and 4 hours on copper. It is also detectable in the air for three hours.
How long can COVID-19 live on surfaces?
Carolyn Machamer, a cell biologist who specializes in coronaviruses, discusses the latest research on the virus that causes COVID-19
If you are between the ages of 18-64 and need a 2022 Influenza vaccination, please give us a call at 540-948-3667 to schedule an appointment. This service is free and open to those who live or work in Madison County, regardless of income or insurance status.