1 lakh cases in 4 days; caution on Remdesivir

1 lakh cases in 4 days; caution on Remdesivir

A lab technicians holds the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) treatment drug 'Remdesivir'. Reuters

Tribune News Service
New Delhi, July 11

As India’s Covid-19 caseload crossed 8 lakh on Saturday, adding one lakh cases in four days, the government sounded caution on the use of Remdesivir injectable formulation permitted for restricted use in case of patients on oxygen support.

Read also: Dharavi effort wins WHO praise 

Itolizumab use permitted

Itolizumab, injectable drug used to treat severe chronic plaque psoriasis, a skin condition, was on Saturday permitted by the Drug Controller General of India for “restricted emergency use” in moderate and severe Covid-19 cases

The ICMR today told states that Remdesivir has to be used with extreme caution due to its potential to have serious adverse effects, including liver and kidney injury.

A similar warning was sounded for Tocilizumab, which is also permitted for use on Covid patients with poor oxygen indicators. “These drugs are permitted only for restricted emergency use. Their indiscriminate use or use in conditions for which they are not desirable may cause more harm than good,” the ICMR said.

Available evidence for Remdesivir suggests it may decrease the time needed for clinical improvement in moderate to severe cases, but does not reduce mortality.

The ICMR caution came as India saw another record daily increase of 27,114 cases that took Covid-19 count to 8,20,916 with 22,123 deaths. There were 519 mortalities in 24 hours.

With rising cases, the focus has shifted to patient management. The ICMR said the focus of clinical management should continue to remain on oxygen therapy (including high flow nasal oxygen), steroids (widely available and inexpensive) and timely administration of anti-coagulants and high quality supportive care.

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