Since the coronavirus outbreak and hospitals being flooded with patients, doctors, and healthcare workers have been scrambling to find the best way to treat patients.
What if the best and most reliable way to treat patients if the most standard way of treating patients? A team led by C. Corey Hardin, MD, PhD, an Assistant Professor of Medicine at MGH and Harvard Medical School, explored this question and examined 66 critically ill patients who had COVID-19 and how they responded to treatments. The study found that the most serve cases of COVID-19 result in a well-known syndrome called Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).
Each of the patients was put on a ventilator, and Dr. Hardin, "We applied these treatments--such as prone ventilation where patients are turned onto their stomachs--to patients in our study and they responded to them as we would expect patients with ARDS to respond." The death rate among critically ill patients that are infected with COVID-19 and are treated this way is 16.7%, which isn't nearly as high as what other hospitals are reporting. It should also be noted that over a median follow-up of 34 days, 75.8% of patients that were treated with ventilators recovered and were discharged.
Co-lead author Jehan Alladina, MD, an Instructor in Medicine at Mass General said, "Based on this, we recommend that clinicians provide evidence-based ARDS treatments to patients with respiratory failure due to COVID-19 and await standardized clinical trials before contemplating novel therapies."
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