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COVID-19: What Did the Cat Just Drag In?

Answer: Hydroxychloroquine (aka HCQ).




With 2020 turning out to be a complete annus horribilis, it's worth revisiting this clip from The Simpsons:



Cast of Characters:

  • The Dog (aka Santa's Little Helper): Hydroxychloroquine (aka HCQ).

  • The Cat: The Henry Ford Hospital System

  • Homer Simpson: Homer Simpson (duh)

  • Bart and Lisa: You and I, the American Public.


In an astonishing paper published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases on July 1, 2020, Dr. Marcus Zervos and colleagues published their findings showing that of 2,541 COVID-19 positive patients hospitalized between 10 March - 2 May 2020:

  • HCQ-treated (+/- azithromycin) patients had a 13% mortality rate.

  • Non-HCQ treated patients had a 26.4% mortality rate

Some caveats:

  • This was a retrospective study (looking after the fact) so you lose some precision in terms of patient selection, determining treatment protocol, etc.

  • The median age of the patients was 64 years

  • 51% Men

  • 56% African American

Take Home Point: HCQ seems to have significantly decreased the death rate among hospitalized patients. Who knows what effects if given prior to hospitalization? Hmmmm.


I'll be analyzing the paper in depth in a later post.


Be well,


Dr. Pete

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