A study from a respected medical journal found hydroxychloroquine is linked to 'increased risk of in-hospital mortality.'
Hydroxychloroquine, the malaria drug Donald Trump has touted as a "miracle" cure for the coronavirus, was found to have an increased risk of death for patients treated with it in hospitals, according to a study published Friday in the Lancet.
The study published in the respected medical journal is the largest to date on the drug, looking at 96,000 patients who were hospitalized with the coronavirus.
It concluded that there were no benefits to taking the drug for COVID-19, but that instead the drug led to a 34% increase in the risk of death and a 137% increase in the risk of serious heart complications, according to the Washington Post.
"We were unable to confirm a benefit of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine, when used alone or with a macrolide, on in-hospital outcomes for COVID-19. Each of these drug regimens was associated with decreased in-hospital survival and an increased frequency of ventricular arrhythmias when used for treatment of COVID-19," the study found.
This is the latest of several studies to find an increased risk of death from hydroxychloroquine.
Trump has dismissed the previous studies, including one that looked at patients treated for the coronavirus at veterans hospitals in the United States. That study found 28% of people who got hydroxychloroquine died, as opposed to the 11% who only got "routine care."
In Brazil, a small study of chloroquine, a drug related to hydroxychloroquine, was halted in April because patients receiving the drug were seeing an increased risk of a possibly fatal heart complication.
Even the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning about the drug, all of which Trump dismissed when asked Tuesday why he'd promote hydroxychloroquine given the risks.
"If you look at the one survey, the only bad survey, they were giving it to people that were in very bad shape, they were very old, almost dead. It was a Trump enemy statement," Trump said Tuesday of the study.
Instead, Trump said he's taking the drug himself in an attempt to prevent an infection after two White House aides tested positive for the coronavirus.
"I started taking it because I think it's good," Trump said on Monday, when asked why he would take a drug even his doctor didn't recommend he take.
Facing backlash after promoting the drug, despite warnings from actual medical experts, the White House cited evidence from a fringe group that promotes fake science earlier this week.
The night before the Lancet study was published, Trump again pushed the drug, tweeting he wants the drug to "be put in use IMMEDIATELY."
"PEOPLE ARE DYING, MOVE FAST, and GOD BLESS EVERYONE!" Trump tweeted.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.