Harmful according to a recent study, banned in France, the very controversial hydroxychloroquine must not be rejected definitively of the search for the cure to combat the novel coronavirus, insists a quebec researcher.
The reputation already sullied by this anti-malarial medication deteriorated further on Wednesday when France decided to ban it as a treatment for the COVID-19, except in the context of the research. Last week, in the prestigious medical journal The Lancet, a study concluded that this molecule is not only ineffective for people suffering from the COVID-19, but that in addition, it increases the risk of cardiac arrhythmias and mortality.
Methodology ” low “
However, despite the analysis of the records of tens of thousands of patients, the results of this survey are at least ” based on a methodology very low “, because it is a study called “observational” and not a randomized crossover study with placebo, argues Dr. Emily McDonald, director of the evaluation Unit of the clinical practices of the McGill university health Centre (MUHC). In addition, the studied patients are hospitalized, they were usually already very sick, ” she continues.
Dr. McDonald and his team at McGill University remain committed to completing their own study, begun a few weeks ago, on the hydroxychloroquine. For their part, the quebec researchers are interested in those who have mild symptoms of the coronavirus to see if this molecule could avoid serious complications. They have been given the green light by an independent panel, which oversees their work.
“For me, [the study published in The Lancet] is not a proof strong enough to stop all the randomized studies on “hydroxychloroquine,” says Dr. McDonald. In spite of everything, she supported the decision of France, since, according to her, it is necessary to be careful with any substance whose safety and effectiveness are not proved. This does not prevent that it is necessary to continue the research, because it is necessary to explore all possible avenues, she believes.