Dr. Okupe admitted to being treated with controversial hydroxychloroquine
Dr. Doyin Okupe, the former Senior Special Adviser to former President Goodluck Jonathan has said he disclosed the names of drugs used to treat him of COVID-19 infections out of pure emotions.
Okupe stated this in an interview with Arise News television on Monday.
Recall that Dr. Okupe, who is also a medical doctor, tested positive for COVID-19 two weeks ago and recovered after being treated with hydroxychloroquine and three other drugs.
Defending why he disclosed the name of the drugs, he said: “One thing in Nigeria is that once doctors prescribe medicines to patients, nobody borders to explain to you what drugs you are taking. That is wrong.
“No Nigerian person should take any drugs from anybody without asking for the name. This is because you may leave that premises and something happens to you like an adverse reaction and you cannot really go back to that same hospital, and when you go to another hospital and they ask you what drugs did you take, and you don’t know.”
But he regrets the decision as it is against the guidelines by the authorities to contain the spread of the virus, adding that he had since taken down the social media post.
“Now, I am not going to give an excuse. I just responded, not as a doctor this time, but purely from the guts, you know, sentimentally. I had lots of private calls from very highly placed people and friends and I also had a lot of requests from the social media, asking for the name of the drugs used to treat me, so, I just put it out there innocently the drugs I was placed on and the dosage which I used.
“Of course, even if it is the same drugs, dosages may differ depending on the age and your size and dispositions.
“But given the benefits of hindsight, I don’t think it was something right that I did. But it was just something that I was responding to the emotions of the people,” he said.
He added: “I quite agree with you, I also had a personal experience – a niece of mine called me and said you should thank your uncle for me o, when I saw that prescription, I ran quickly to the chemist and I bought my own drugs. That was not the intention and it is deeply regretted.”
Study shows hydroxychloroquine not effective in COVID-19 treatment
Hydroxychloroquine, a drug used to prevent or treat malaria caused by mosquito bites has been canvassed for use in the treatment of COVID-19.
But according to the latest study from France by a leading medical journal, BMJ, and published by Science Daily, the anti-inflammatory drug hydroxychloroquine does not significantly reduce admission to intensive care or death in patients hospitalized with pneumonia due to COVID-19.
The study cited a randomised clinical trial from China which showed that hospitalised patients with mild to moderate persistent COVID-19 who received hydroxychloroquine did not clear the virus more quickly than those receiving standard care.
“Taken together, the results do not support routine use of hydroxychloroquine for patients with covid-19.
“Hydroxychloroquine can reduce inflammation, pain, and swelling, and is widely used to treat rheumatic diseases. It is also used as an anti-malarial drug. Lab tests showed promising results, but accumulating trial and observational evidence has called into question whether there are any meaningful clinical benefits for patients with covid-19,” said the report.
In the first study, researchers in France assessed the effectiveness and safety of hydroxychloroquine compared with standard care in adults admitted to hospital with pneumonia due to covid-19 who needed oxygen, said the Science Daily report.
Of 181 patients, 84 received hydroxychloroquine within 48 hours of admission and 97 did not (control group).
They found no meaningful differences between the groups for transfer to intensive care, death within 7 days, or developing acute respiratory distress syndrome within 10 days.
The researchers say that caution is needed in the interpretation of their results, but that their findings do not support the use of hydroxychloroquine in patients hospitalised with covid-19 pneumonia.
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