UC researchers find that convalescent plasma helps prevent COVID-19 hospitalizations | News
UC researchers find that convalescent plasma helps prevent COVID-19 hospitalizations |  News

UC researchers find that convalescent plasma helps prevent COVID-19 hospitalizations | News










Researchers at the University of Cincinnati (UC) participated in a nationwide study that found that convalescent plasma can reduce COVID-19 hospitalizations, especially when given early in the course of the disease.

The study – conducted in 23 locations nationwide, including UC – found the use of convalescent plasma – blood plasma from patients recovering from COVID-19 – reduced the relative risk reduction in coronavirus-related admissions by 54%. It was published in New England Journal of Medicine.

The research was conducted in collaboration with Hoxworth Blood Center at UC, also showed that the faster the convalescence plasma was given to the patient, the higher the reduction.

“This trial provides robust data that supports the use of high-titer convalescent plasma given early in the course of the disease to prevent hospitalizations,” said Dr. Moises Huaman, Associate Professor in the Department of Infectious Diseases of the Department of Internal Medicine at the UC College of Medicine, in a UC News Release.

The study followed 1,181 adults with COVID-19 – half received high-titer convalescent plasma containing a mixture of COVID-19 antibodies, while the other half received placebo. None of the patients who received the plasma died and 17 were hospitalized within 28 days of infection. Three patients receiving placebo died and 37 were admitted.

Huaman said convalescent plasma could be a beneficial COVID-19 treatment, especially when other drugs are not available and new variants are escaping available therapies.

“The good thing about this tool is that it can be customized and could be available globally,” Huaman added. “If you are able to collect convalescent plasma from a person who has recovered from an illness due to the current circulating variant, these antibodies against the specific variant may help others.”

Although COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths remain relatively low in Cincinnati and the United States, some experts see global numbers rising, fears a potential new wave in the virus in the country.

That US Food and Drug Administration approves the use of COVID-19 convalescent plasma in immunosuppressed patients for acute use. That Infectious Diseases Society of America proposes Outpatients with mild to moderate COVID-19 at high risk of progression to severe disease who have no other treatment options should receive treatment.

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