HYDERABAD: In a major development, doctors from Gandhi Hospital revealed that of the 13 patients who were administered convalescent plasma therapy for COVID-19, 11 had recovered fully. Though a bit early, the information now gives out data that nearly 84 per cent recovery rate is there for this treatment protocol.
Gandhi Hospital is one of the few select hospitals, engaged with ICMR, at the national level for plasma therapy trials. Speaking to Express, Dr Aedula Vinay Sekhar, Professor and HOD Medicine, Gandhi Medical College and Hospital says that the treatment is promising. There was significant and encouraging improvement in a majority of the patients.
"We have seen that this treatment protocol will do well for people who are in the category of illness — 'moderately severe'. They are generally stage-3 Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) patients, who have an increase in oxygen demand without many co-morbidities," he said.
The doctor notes that the patients showed good results even after recovery in terms of hospital stay, viral replication, and how soon they shed off the virus after a plasma rich in antibody was transfused to them.
Plasma donation is essentially used when the patient does not respond to any other treatment protocol. "While steroids is ‘the drug’ for any stage patient to fight off the virus, plasma is for moderately severe patients before they reach a ventilator stage," adds Dr Vinay.