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Elderly Covid Patients with 'Barrage of Comorbidities' are Now Safe. Docs Credit Cocktail Therapy

Representational Image

Representational Image

A single dose of the cocktail costs as much as Rs 60,000.

Six patients suffering from mild to moderate Covid-19 infections and with multiple comorbid conditions at four different hospitals across Pune showed faster recovery after being administered the single-dose cocktail of monoclonal antibodies in the last two weeks.

The doctors treating the patients informed that the condition of the six patients improved and did not progress to severe Covid-19 after having administered the cocktail.

Talking to TOI, a doctor said that two elderly patients having a barrage of comorbidities responded well to the monoclonal antibody cocktail therapy and did not develop any Covid associated complications.

One of the patients, the doctor noted was an 83-year-old man having diabetes, coronary artery disease hypertension and a lung condition called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) while the other was a 70-year-old woman with chronic kidney disease, diabetes and who had undergone multiple surgeries in the past.

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Both patients have comorbidities and were at a high risk of developing severe Covid symptoms but due to the timely administering of the antibody, notably within three days of Covid positive report and less than a week of symptoms, the patients recovered without requiring even oxygen support.

Another senior physician in the city shared his experience of treating two Covid-19 patients with the antibody cocktail. He said that both his patients had moderate covid and were treated within seven days of the onset of symptoms and diagnosis which led to their speedy recovery.

One, a 55-year-old recovered within five days, while the other woman (65) took seven day to recover. None suffered post covid complications, the doctor noted.

At present, doctors across India are unsure about the efficacy of the therapy. Some are of the opinion that a single-dose cocktails of monoclonal antibodies is an effective way of curbing disease progression among high risk patients and may prove fruitful in reducing hospitalisation, ICU admission or repeated emergency visits by 70 percent. While others have called it out by saying that it is no wonder drug and evidence of it aiding recovery is not yet robust for its usage.

Deliberating on the issue, infectious diseases expert Parikshit Prayag told TOI that the cocktail therapy is not applicable to every Covid-19 patient. Only those on oxygen and having multiple comorbidities can be administered the cocktail.

“Studies have shown that it works against variants like B1.617. However, efficacy may reduce as new variants emerge," he said.

Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-made proteins that mimic the immune system to combat the deadly Coronavirus and are only meant to be given to patients suffering from mild to moderate Covid infection. A single dose of the cocktail costs as much as Rs 60,000.

Almost 85 percent decline was noted in daily new cases of Covid since the highest reported peak on May 7, the health ministry said.

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first published:June 19, 2021, 10:35 IST