As many of you probably recall, hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, both of which are antimalarials and often used in the treatment of lupus/SLE were being tested a few months ago as a potential treatment for Covid-19. US President Trump of course quickly jumped on this bandwagon proclaiming that it was a “game-changer.” This was said, of course, as testing was being started, not because of results of testing that had finished. As a result, I remember seeing many Spoonies, particularly those with lupus panicking because they couldn’t get their medications as quickly. And to be honest, I quickly went and refilled my own prescription. Though I’m only borderline for lupus, my rheumatologist kept me on the drug as it seems to have helped my symptoms over the past few years.
Now, results of the first study have been reported in the medical journal The Lancet. And those results aren’t exactly great… Of those patients who received hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine as a treatment, many of them ended up with heart problems and died as a result. So my question is, what does that mean for those of us who are regularly prescribed these meds? As North America starts to open up again (too soon here in Ontario given our daily cases, and WAAAAY too soon in the States given that they haven’t come close to flattening the curve, does that put myself and everyone else at a higher risk of death if we do get Covid-19?
Good thing I stocked up… bad thing it could be dangerous.
Unfortunately from what I read in news articles, I couldn’t find an answer. And no, I haven’t read the study itself in The Lancet (I can only read so many journal articles in a week and I have to read a lot of them for school), so I don’t have an answer. It does make me weary though. I didn’t want to get Covid-19 in the first place, but now I’m feeling more apprehensive about it. I’m very curious how my other Spoonies/Warriors are feeling about all of this and what precautions everyone is taking. Last week I was told to expect to be back at work in the next 2-3 weeks, and I work with the public. And while my company is providing masks to employees, we already know that is just to protect others, and masks don’t actually protect us, which means I have to trust the public to come in with masks as well (based on what I’ve seen, I don’t trust most people). At the same time, as a furloughed employee, I have to return to work when called in. Quite the predicament.
Image from: https://www.lehighvalleylive.com/acts/2020/05/read-my-lips-coworkers-create-clear-masks-for-hearing-impaired-manager-of-lehigh-valley-best-buy.html
Here is the link to a news article from the Washington Post about it:
Washington Post: Hydroxychloroquine Study
I’m hoping more information comes in about hydroxychloroquine and Covid-19, and what the hell that means for us. I’d love to hear your comments and thoughts on all of this, so please leave a comment, send an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or DM me on instagram (@janeversuspain). Stay safe.