Therapeutic management of COVID-19 patients: Clinical manifestation and limitations

Urooj Fatima, Syed Saif Abbas Rizvi, Neha Raina, Saher Fatima, Safikur Rahman, Mohammad Amjad Kamal, Md Imtaiyaz Hassan
Current Pharmaceutical Design 2020 November 24
Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory tract infection, accompanied with severe or fatal pneumonia like symptoms and sometime death. It has posed to be an ongoing global health emergency caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Due to a sudden outbreak and a large number of infections and deaths, it became a major concern all over the world. The options available as effective therapeutic, should be urgently exercised to handle this pandemic disease. So far, no specific and accurate anti-SARS-CoV-2 treatment is recommended because of the absence of sufficient clinical evidence. In such cases, the clinical use of available drugs is always considered to be on top priority. A broad-spectrum antiviral agent, Remdesivir is found effective in many cases and recommended by many clinicians in many countries. This drug acts as a potential inhibitor of viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerase protein, and thus likely to be efficacious in SARS-CoV-2 infection. Tocilizumab is currently recommended by many hospitals as an alternative treatment for critically ill COVID-19 patients. The tocilizumab has been administered to control cytokine storms that occurred due to the release of proinflammatory cytokine including interleukin 6. Chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine were also used in hospitals, to handle severe COVID-19 patients. Currently, plasma therapy has been exercised as a therapeutic alternative, especially to handle severe COVID-19 patients. In addition, herbal medicines are expected to play significant role in the control and prevention of COVID-19. All these therapeutic options have their advantages and limitations. This review highlights the therapeutic potential of these available drugs, along with their mechanism of action and shortcomings. We have provided detailed information on available therapeutic options, which have proved to be effectual in improving clinical symptoms of severe COVID-19 patients.

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