Cheap Steroid Reduces Covid-19 Death Toll by 35%
The steroid dexamethasone has been found to reduce the risk of death in seriously illpatients by about a third, according to clinical trial results hailed on Tuesday as a “major breakthrough.” The drug did not appear to help less severely ill patients.
Researchers led by a team from the University of Oxford administered the inexpensive, widely available drug to more than 2,000 severely ill COVID-19 patients. Among those who could only breathe with the help of a ventilator, dexamethasone reduced deaths by 35%. It reduced deaths by about 20% among patients who were receiving oxygen only, according to preliminary results.
Dexamethasone is an anti-inflammatory drug normally used to treat a range of allergic reactions as well as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma.