Hydroxychloroquine and Azithromycin as a Treatment of COVID-19: Results of an Open-Label Non-Randomized Clinical Trial: Response to David Spencer (Elsevier)
|Date||July 8, 2020|
Didier Raoult and coauthors respond to expert criticism and threat from Int J Antimicrob Agents to retract their published clinical trial of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in 36 hospitalized COVID-19 patients from March 2020.
The authors continue defend their results by summarizing a meta-analysis on the effects of chloroquine derived medications in treatment of COVID-19 with a summary effect of a mortality OR of only 0.79 (p=0.003) compared to standard care and other therapies.
Also, of note, the authors, specifically Didier Raoult on behalf of himself and the IHU, deny a relationship or conflict of interest with the pharmaceutical company Sanofi for the past 5 years.
The purpose of this article was to defend the publication of the small clinical trial that prompted immediate investigation into the effects of hydroxychloroquine in treatment of COVID-19. While defending the endpoint of viral load, Raoult et al. admit that the study had too few patients for mortality or passage to ICU to be evaluated with any significance.
Additional major issues with this specific trial can be found at https://omnij.org/Hydroxychloroquine_and_azithromycin_as_a_treatment_of_COVID-19:_results_of_an_open-label_non-randomized_clinical_trial.
No minor issues identified at this time.
This article dismissed the controversy regarding potential conflicts of interest between Didier Raoult and the IHU and Sanofi, the manufacturer of Plaquenil (brand name version of hydroxychloroquine).
The initial clinical trial published in Int J Antimicrob Agents has not been retracted at this time.
None at this time.