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Sunday, Jan 29, 2023

HKUMed study finds Covid pills cut risk of death by over 50 percent

HKUMed study finds Covid pills cut risk of death by over 50 percent

Initiation of novel oral antiviral treatments in hospitalized patients with mild-to-moderate Covid-19 showed substantial clinical benefit to reduce mortality, disease progression, and achieve lower viral burden, according to a research team from The University of Hong Kong.
The researchers selected the patients among a total of 40,776 patients hospitalized between February 26 and April 26 this year who were eligible to receive the two types of oral antivirals - Molnupiravir and Nirmatrelvir-ritonavir.

The analysis included 1,856 early molnupiravir recipients and 1,856 matched controls, and 890 early nirmatrelvir-ritonavir recipients and 890 matched controls.

Results showed the risk of all-cause mortality in molnupiravir recipients versus matched controls and in nirmatrelvir–ritonavir recipients versus matched controls had a 52 percent and 66 percent reduction respectively.

The oral antiviral recipients also lowered their risks of the composite disease progression outcome by 40 to 43 percent, whereas the need for oxygen therapy also saw a rate reduction by 27 to 31 percent, according to the research team.

Dr Carlos Wong King-ho, Assistant Professor of the Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacy at HKUMed, said the antiviral effect and mortality benefit observed in this study supported the use of oral antivirals in patients with Covid-19 who do not require supplemental oxygen on admission during a pandemic wave of the omicron variant.

The research team also concluded that early initiation of oral antivirals was associated with significant reductions in risk of all-cause mortality and disease progression, and with reaching a low viral burden faster than non-users.

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