Dr. Marc Siegel is a regular on Fox News’s Tucker Carlson Tonight show. Before wholesale social distancing went into effect, Siegel reported on the coronavirus from airports to hospitals and everywhere in between.
After dispassionately explaining a few studies showing that the malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, was being used to great effect to stop or arrest COVID-19, Siegel paused during Tuesday night’s program and said,
I want to tell you about a 96-year-old man in Florida who said one night, “I don’t think I’m going to make it. I feel very weak. The end is coming.”
The next day he was on hydroxychloroquine and antibiotics per his cardiologist.
He got up the next day, he was fine.
This man is my father.
The news has been populated by anecdotal stories of coronavirus (CV) patients being saved by hydroxychloroquine because it arrests the worst part of the virus that attacks the lungs.
Time Magazine explains how the drugs help coronavirus patients:
There have been lab studies of hydroxychloroquine suggesting that in people, cells in the respiratory tract, for example, engulf coronaviruses within a tiny pouch. The virus needs to puncture this pouch in order to release its genetic material into the cell and turn it into a viral copying machine to pump out more virus. To do all that, SARS-CoV-2 requires an acidic environment. Hydroxychloroquine is an alkaline compound, so it raises the pH levels of the host environment, preventing the virus from releasing its genes for copying. The end result: the coronavirus is bumped out of cells and can’t infect them. (How azithromycin contributes to this process isn’t clear yet, but doctors suspect that it may quell the worst respiratory symptoms of COVID-19 by reducing inflammation caused by the viral infection in the lungs.)
There are possible side effects, such as irregular heartbeat, so that’s why only the most desperate patients get the cocktail of the malaria meds and the antibiotic azithromycin.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlight the drug cocktail as one of the therapeutics offered to help COVID-19 patients.
Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are oral prescription drugs that have been used for treatment of malaria and certain inflammatory conditions. Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are under investigation in clinical trials for pre-exposure or post-exposure prophylaxis of SARS-CoV-2 infection, and treatment of patients with mild, moderate, and severe COVID-19.
Trials are underway now.
See Dr. Marc Siegel’s report:
“I want to tell you about a 96-year-old man in Florida who said one night, ‘I don’t think I’m going to make it. I feel very weak. The end is coming.'
The next day he was on hydroxychloroquine and antibiotics … he got up the next day, he was fine.
This man is my father." pic.twitter.com/K1hs7QJ5P4
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) April 8, 2020