The Study That Condemned Hydroxychloroquine Has Been Retracted

COVID-19: WHO resumes study on Hydroxychloroquine

Hydroxychloroquine safety study pulled on data integrity concern

More than 11,000 patients in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland were randomly assigned to get either standard of care or that plus one of these treatments: hydroxychloroquine, the HIV combo drug lopinavir-ritonavir, the antibiotic azithromycin, the steroid dexamethasone, the anti-inflammatory drug tocilizumab, or plasma from people who have recovered from Covid-19 that contains antibodies to fight the virus.

Martin Landray, an Oxford University professor who is co-leading the RECOVERY trial said, "Today's preliminary results from the RECOVERY trial are quite clear - hydroxychloroquine does not reduce the risk of death among hospitalised patients with this new disease".

Two large COVID-19 studies of a drug touted by President Donald Trump that warned of the risk of unsafe side effects and death have now been retracted after the credibility of the database used came under question.

Four medical experts who published a research that emphasised the dangers of hydroxychloroquine and induced the World Health Organisation to suspend clinical trials for the famous medication, have retracted their study.

The randomised clinical trial-considered the gold standard for clinical investigation-and has recruited a total of 11,000 patients from patients from 175 hospitals in the United Kingdom to test a range of drugs.

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The Surgisphere-based study went further than others that questioned the benefits provided by the anti-malaria drugs, by actually suggesting those taking it had a higher mortality rate.

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization said that they would resume worldwide trial testing on the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine after experts began publicly questioning the Lancet study.

COVID-19: WHO resumes study on Hydroxychloroquine
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Concerns were raised about the data and then some of the study's authors said they could no longer stand by their publication as Surgisphere would not allow an independent review.

Professor Horby said: 'Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine have received a lot of attention and have been used very widely to treat Covid patients despite the absence of any good evidence. They said on Thursday that Surgisphere, the company that provided the data, would not transfer the dataset for an independent review and that they "can no longer vouch for the veracity of the primary data sources".

The World Health Organization emphasised there is still no evidence hydroxychloroquine, or any drug, is effective in treating or preventing Covid-19. The trial immediately stopped using the drug.

Just as context, this development comes at a time when hydroxychloroquine has proved ineffective in the first large study which tests it in people in close contact with COVID19 infected people.

After a request from the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency the trial investigators reviewed the data on the hydroxychloroquine arm of the study.

The WHO said on 3 June that it would resume its trials after halting them last month.

A Guardian investigation had revealed errors in the data which were later explained by Surgisphere as some patients being wrongly allocated to Australia instead of Asia.

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