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Ther Clin Risk Manag ; 17: 1187-1198, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1523573


Introduction: Though chloroquine derivatives are used in the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in many countries worldwide, doubts remain about the safety and efficacy of these drugs, especially in African communities where published data are scarce. Methods: We conducted an observational prospective cohort study from April 24 to September 03, 2020, in Burkina Faso to assess (as primary outcome) the clinical, biological, and cardiac (electrocardiographic) safety of chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine plus azithromycin administered to COVID-19 patients. The main secondary outcomes were all-cause mortality and median time of viral clearance. Results: A total of 153 patients were enrolled and followed for 21 days. Among patients who took at least one dose of chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine (90.1% [138/153]), few clinical adverse events were reported and were mainly rash/pruritus, diarrhea, chest pain, and palpitations. No statistically significant increase in hepatic, renal, and hematological parameters or electrolyte disorders were reported. However, there was a significant increase in the QTc value without exceeding 500ms, especially in those who received chloroquine phosphate. Three adverse events of special interest classified as serious (known from chloroquine derivatives) were recorded namely pruritus, paresthesia, and drowsiness. One case of death occurred. The average onset of SARS-CoV-2 PCR negativity was estimated at 7.0 (95% CI: 5.0-10.0) days. Conclusion: Hydroxychloroquine appeared to be well tolerated in treated COVID-19 patients in Burkina Faso. In the absence of a robust methodological approach that could generate a high level of scientific evidence, our results could at least contribute to guide health decisions that should be made based on different sources of scientific evidence including those from our study.

Int J Infect Dis ; 101: 194-200, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-796226


BACKGROUND: Absolute numbers of COVID-19 cases and deaths reported to date in the sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region have been significantly lower than those across the Americas, Asia and Europe. As a result, there has been limited information about the demographic and clinical characteristics of deceased cases in the region, as well as the impacts of different case management strategies. METHODS: Data from deceased cases reported across SSA through 10 May 2020 and from hospitalized cases in Burkina Faso through 15 April 2020 were analyzed. Demographic, epidemiological and clinical information on deceased cases in SSA was derived through a line-list of publicly available information and, for cases in Burkina Faso, from aggregate records at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Tengandogo in Ouagadougou. A synthetic case population was probabilistically derived using distributions of age, sex and underlying conditions from populations of West African countries to assess individual risk factors and treatment effect sizes. Logistic regression analysis was conducted to evaluate the adjusted odds of survival for patients receiving oxygen therapy or convalescent plasma, based on therapeutic effectiveness observed for other respiratory illnesses. RESULTS: Across SSA, deceased cases for which demographic data were available were predominantly male (63/103, 61.2%) and aged >50 years (59/75, 78.7%). In Burkina Faso, specifically, the majority of deceased cases either did not seek care at all or were hospitalized for a single day (59.4%, 19/32). Hypertension and diabetes were often reported as underlying conditions. After adjustment for sex, age and underlying conditions in the synthetic case population, the odds of mortality for cases not receiving oxygen therapy were significantly higher than for those receiving oxygen, such as due to disruptions to standard care (OR 2.07; 95% CI 1.56-2.75). Cases receiving convalescent plasma had 50% reduced odds of mortality than those who did not (95% CI 0.24-0.93). CONCLUSIONS: Investment in sustainable production and maintenance of supplies for oxygen therapy, along with messaging around early and appropriate use for healthcare providers, caregivers and patients could reduce COVID-19 deaths in SSA. Further investigation into convalescent plasma is warranted until data on its effectiveness specifically in treating COVID-19 becomes available. The success of supportive or curative clinical interventions will depend on earlier treatment seeking, such that community engagement and risk communication will be critical components of the response.

COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/mortality , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Adolescent , Adult , Africa South of the Sahara , Aged , Antiviral Agents/administration & dosage , Asia/epidemiology , Burkina Faso/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Child , Child, Preschool , Europe/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Young Adult