Trump's on drugs experts say are usually for serious COVID cases


Observers noted that details about Donald Trump's treatment could indicate that his condition was worrisome.  

Donald Trump and his doctors have tried to project a sunny view of his condition, going so far as to outright lie to the public to downplay the severity of his illness after he was diagnosed with the coronavirus last week and hospitalized over the weekend.

Dr. Scott Conley, Trump's personal physician, skirted a reporter's questions about Trump's oxygen levels Saturday.

"Yesterday and today, he was not on oxygen," Conley said. "The president's been fever-free for over 24 hours. We remain cautiously optimistic, but he's doing great." All that turned out to be false, as Conley admitted on Sunday, confessing that he left out details about Trump's treatment to maintain an "upbeat attitude."

As more details emerged about Trump's course of treatment, observers noted that they could indicate that his condition was worrisome.

On CNN Monday, Dr. Jonathan Reiner of George Washington University Medical Center said that the potent course of medications administered to him suggested Trump might have been very ill.

"No one on the planet has ever received this triple regimen of monoclonal antibodies, Remdesivir, and Dexamethasone," he said. "I don't think it's been given to a single patient on the planet. So this speaks to the urgency of the situation."

"So either the president was desperately ill at the end of the week, or his physicians panicked or the patient was panicking," Reiner hypothesized. "There is no other explanation. Either they felt he was on death's door or there was just a loss of control in the White House."

The three medications administered to Trump tend to be reserved for seriously ill patients, experts said. Vox noted that the steroid dexamethasone is recommended for seriously ill patients and can result in psychiatric problems. According to a paper published by the Mayo Clinic, adverse side effects of corticosteroids can include "mania, depression, psychotic or mixed affective states."

The experimental drug developed by the pharmaceutical company Regeneron that was administered to Trump has yet to be cleared by the FDA.

"If his doctors think an intervention might be helpful, and if that judgment is confirmed by outside experts they talk to, and if things look dire or serious, then the president will get access to any and all agents," Arthur L. Caplan, a professor of medical ethics at the N.Y.U. Grossman School of Medicine, told the New York Times.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.