Metformin, Ivermectin, Fluvoxamine Do Not Prevent Severe COVID-19

No difference in the primary end point seen with any of the three medications versus placebo among adults with overweight or obesity

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FRIDAY, Aug. 19, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with COVID-19 infection, metformin, ivermectin, and fluvoxamine do not prevent the occurrence of hypoxemia, an emergency department visit, hospitalization, or death, according to a study published in the Aug. 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Carolyn T. Bramante, M.D., M.P.H., from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, and colleagues used a 2-by-3 factorial design to test the effectiveness of metformin, ivermectin, and fluvoxamine in preventing serious severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection in nonhospitalized adults enrolled within three days after a confirmed diagnosis of infection and less than seven days after symptom onset. Patients were aged 30 to 85 years, and all had overweight or obesity. The primary analysis included 1,323 patients.

The researchers found that the adjusted odds ratios (95 percent confidence intervals) for a primary event (hypoxemia, emergency department visit, hospitalization, or death) were 0.84 (0.66 to 1.09), 1.05 (0.76 to 1.45), and 0.94 (0.66 to 1.36) with metformin, ivermectin, and fluvoxamine, respectively. In prespecified secondary analyses, the adjusted odds ratios (95 percent confidence intervals) for emergency department visit, hospitalization, or death were 0.58 (0.34 to 0.94), 1.39 (0.72 to 2.69), and 1.17 (0.57 to 2.40) with metformin, ivermectin, and fluvoxamine, respectively, while the corresponding adjusted odds ratios (95 percent confidence intervals) for hospitalization or death were 0.47 (0.20 to 1.11), 0.73 (0.19 to 2.77), and 1.11 (0.33 to 3.76).

"None of the trial drugs resulted in a lower severity of symptoms than identically matched placebo," the authors write.

The fluvoxamine placebo tablets were donated by Apotex. The ivermectin placebo and active tablets were donated by Edenbridge. Two authors disclosed financial ties to Medtronic.

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Physician’s Briefing Staff

Updated on September 21, 2022

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