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Lancet Rheumatol ; 3(6): e447-e459, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1307285


The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in more than 2 million deaths globally. Two interconnected stages of disease are generally recognised; an initial viral stage and a subsequent immune response phase with the clinical characteristics of hyperinflammation associated with acute respiratory distress syndrome. Therefore, many immune modulators and immunosuppressive drugs, which are widely used in rheumatological practice, have been proposed as treatments for patients with moderate or severe COVID-19. In this Review, we provide an overview of what is currently known about the efficacy and safety of antirheumatic therapies for the treatment of patients with COVID-19. Dexamethasone has been shown to reduce COVID-19 related mortality, interleukin-6 inhibitors to reduce risk of cardiovascular or respiratory organ support, and baricitinib to reduce time to recovery in hospitalised patients requiring oxygen support. Further studies are needed to identify whether there is any role for glucocorticoids in patients with less severe COVID-19. Although evidence on the use of other antirheumatic drugs has suggested some benefits, results from adequately powered clinical trials are urgently needed. The heterogeneity in dosing and the absence of uniform inclusion criteria and defined stage of disease studied in many clinical trials have affected the conclusions and comparability of trial results. However, after the success of dexamethasone in proving the anti-inflammatory hypothesis, the next 12 months will undoubtedly bring further clarity about the clinical utility and optimal dose and timing of other anti-rheumatic drugs in the management of COVID-19.

Endocr J ; 68(4): 477-484, 2021 Apr 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1204140


We provide the details of the successful management of a patient with active Cushing's disease complicated with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia. The patient was a 27-year-old Japanese female healthcare worker who was scheduled to undergo pituitary surgery for Cushing's disease. She had been in close contact with an undiagnosed patient infected with COVID-19 and then developed COVID-19 pneumonia. Despite a lack of known risk factors associated with severe COVID-19 infection, the patient's dyspnea worsened and her respiratory condition deteriorated, as indicated by the need for 7 L/min oxygen supply by mask to maintain her oxygen saturation at >90%. Medical treatment was initiated to control hypercortisolism by the 'block and replace' regimen using steroidogenesis inhibitors and hydrocortisone. The COVID-19 pneumonia improved with multi-modal treatment including antiviral therapy. One month later, after a negative severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) test result and with appropriate protection against virus transmission to medical staff in the operating room and daily medical care nurses, trans-sphenoidal surgery was performed by our highly experienced pituitary surgeon. One month after the surgery, the patient's basal ACTH and cortisol levels and urinary free cortisol were all under the detection limit. Surgical remission was expected. Since hypercortisolism due to active Cushing's disease may worsen a COVID-19 infection, multi-disciplinary management that includes appropriate and prompt treatment strategies is mandatory in such cases.

Amides/administration & dosage , Benzamidines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/therapy , Guanidines/administration & dosage , Metyrapone/administration & dosage , Pituitary ACTH Hypersecretion/therapy , Pregnenediones/administration & dosage , Pyrazines/administration & dosage , ACTH-Secreting Pituitary Adenoma/complications , ACTH-Secreting Pituitary Adenoma/drug therapy , Adenoma/complications , Adenoma/drug therapy , Adult , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/pathology , Combined Modality Therapy , Dihydrotestosterone/administration & dosage , Dihydrotestosterone/analogs & derivatives , Disease Progression , Female , Health Personnel , Heparin/administration & dosage , Humans , Japan , Neurosurgical Procedures , Pituitary ACTH Hypersecretion/blood , Pituitary ACTH Hypersecretion/complications , Pituitary ACTH Hypersecretion/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Treatment Outcome , Trimethoprim, Sulfamethoxazole Drug Combination/administration & dosage
Rheumatol Int ; 41(1): 1-5, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1064461


The disease caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19), is a global emergency. The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Japan in January 2020, a second outbreak of infection occurred in mid-March and a third peak at the beginning of August. The COVID-19 phenotype was milder in Japan than in other countries, although the restrictive measures applied in the country have not been as strict as in other places. Factors related to a possible reduced susceptibility to the pulmonary manifestations of SARS-CoV-2 may have contributed to better outcomes and lower mortality in Japan.

COVID-19/mortality , Comorbidity , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Rheumatic Diseases/complications , SARS-CoV-2