Hydroxychloroquine has no benefit to treating patients with COVID-19, says study co-authored by UPMC doctor

PITTSBURGH — It’s been used as a treatment for people diagnosed with COVID-19, but now a new study shows Hydroxychloroquine has no benefit to treating patients with the virus.

A University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Senior Medical Director and Chair of Emergency Medicine Dr. Donald Yealy co-authored the study saying it really doesn’t help and is clearing the air when it comes to treatment methods for COVID-19.

The results were published Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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The study was done at 34 hospitals in the Prevention and Early Treatment of Acute Lung Injury Clinical Trials Network.

New research shows there was no evidence that it helped in recovery or prevented death.

“Half got the agent and half did not. And we tracked all kinds of outcomes over the next few weeks and we could not detect the difference between the two. It didn’t cause any harm but it didn’t cause any benefit,” said Dr. Yealy.

The malaria drug gained worldwide attention when President Donald Trump recently endorsed it after he tested positive for COVID-19.

Dr. Yealy said Hydroxychloroquine was used early on in some treatment efforts; however, now they know far more.