A new report by clinicians from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Massachusetts General Hospital shows that even the most critically ill patients of COVID-19 improve and recover when given the current standard treatment for the coronavirus infection along with mechanical assistance for breathing by the use of a ventilator in intensive care units.
These findings, which appear in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, could have future implications on the treatment and control of COVID-19 as well as establish better and more precise guidelines for health practitioners around the world.
Read the report here.
Currently, various hospitals and researchers from different have shared management and treatment strategies in order to share information and find the best control strategy which may help in overcoming the ongoing health crisis more quickly.
However, the majority of the reported information from hospitals and healthcare facilities is based on experience. Most of the researchers have advised the medical community to follow guidelines based on experience cautiously as there is a concern regarding reliability and the possibility of more harm than good.
Therefore, to establish reliable guidelines, a researchers team led by C. Corey Hardin, who is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at MGH and Harvard Medical School examined the data and recovery of sixty-six patients who were in the intensive care unit due to being critically ill with COVID-19.
All of these patients were experiencing the worst COVID-19 complications including respiratory failure and required ventilators to survive and recover from the infection.
While these patients received the standard care along with mechanical assistance in breathing, the researchers noted the responses and improvements with each one of the strategies used in the treatment.
The researchers discovered that some patients who were critically ill were at high risk of developing Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, which is a life-threatening condition related to the lungs, which is likely to increase the complications related to the coronavirus infection.
However, since there is a lot of medical literature present on ARDS, a number of ways have been developed to control and treat it, which are also a part of care for critically ill patients of COVID-19.
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Hence, in the observed patients, the syndrome was effectively managed by using some of the strategies such as prone ventilation. After controlling the threat of ARDS, it was much easier for the health care workers to control the infection.
The most important finding of the study was the death rate among the studied critically ill patients was not as high in comparison with the reported rates from other facilities. More specifically, the rate of mortality in the patients was around sixteen percent.
In addition, in a follow-up session of the study after thirty-four days, the researchers also noted that seventy-five percent of the condition of patients in the intensive care unit improved and were subsequently discharged.
The co-author of the study and an instructor in Medicine at Mass General. , Jehan Alladina, comments on these findings, saying “Based on this, we recommend that clinicians provide evidence-based ARDS treatments to patients with respiratory failure due to COVID-19 and await standardized clinical trials before contemplating novel therapies,”
Secondly, these findings also highlight that clinicians and health care workers should stick to the standard treatment for COVID-19 patients until a new and more effective treatment is developed after enough research.
In accordance with the World Health Organization, there is are approved drugs or medicines for the treatment of COVID-19 currently. Therefore, no medication should be used at home or prescribed by health professionals without scientific evidence and approval from health authorities.
Visit a health facility or a hospital immediately in case of any symptoms of the coronavirus infection for effective treatment.