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More deaths, no benefit from malaria drug in VA virus study

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Posted By: Dino Sayer, 4/21/2020 3:48:22 PM

A malaria drug widely touted by President Donald Trump for treating the new coronavirus showed no benefit in a large analysis of its use in U.S. veterans hospitals. There were more deaths among those given hydroxychloroquine versus standard care, researchers reported.


Having read the actual study, what it actually reported was that VA patients treated with hydroxycholoroquine and azithromycin were half as likely to die as patients who were treated with neither. That's exactly opposite of what the author focuses on. Cherry picking the results leads to the results as reported. In addition, there was no report of whether patients were picked for hydroxycholorquine/Z-PAK treat only if they were already hospitalized, or having severe symptoms. If the most severe patients got hydroxy-Z, of course they would have higher death rates. If they were only treated with hydroxy-Z as a last-ditch thing instead of within 5 days of onset, of course they will have higher death rates. This 'study' isn't worth much. It replaces randomness with a statistical post-process massage of the data set. It sure sounds official, though!

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Reply 1 - Posted by: Dino Sayer 4/21/2020 3:51:26 PM (No. 386814)
PS Let the screaming begin! And yes, I have a small amount of training in analyzing scientific studies, although my tiny bit of training is in physiological psychology and econometric studies.
20 people like this.

Reply 2 - Posted by: bgarrett 4/21/2020 3:53:25 PM (No. 386817)
Its the Associated Press, so I dont believe what they say
71 people like this.

Reply 3 - Posted by: JHHolliday 4/21/2020 3:57:42 PM (No. 386825)
Never believe anything put out by AP. They no longer publish any news anymore. Every single story is an opinion piece.
57 people like this.

Reply 4 - Posted by: Doc1 4/21/2020 3:57:56 PM (No. 386826)
President Trump and many, many others.
11 people like this.

Reply 5 - Posted by: oldmagnolia 4/21/2020 4:01:00 PM (No. 386834)
This is the Associated Puke. If you are in a VA hospital you have problems to begin with. If you have never been into one, you should go to see what socialized medicine is. The article is deceiving.
47 people like this.

Reply 6 - Posted by: AGGW 4/21/2020 4:02:27 PM (No. 386837)
Good points from OP.
27 people like this.

Reply 7 - Posted by: poliposter 4/21/2020 4:08:04 PM (No. 386849)
Just spoke with someone who is in the middle of this at Hopkins. The deaths are overwhelming 80+ years of age but every article in our local news source is about a young person getting/drying from Covid19. I believe all the patients in this particular study were hospitalized at the time of the study.
29 people like this.

Reply 8 - Posted by: montwoodcliff 4/21/2020 4:09:39 PM (No. 386851)
This is the second article I've seen pooh-poohing this treatment. I have to wonder how they would interpret these trials if Obama had "highly touted" the drugs. Long story, short. what does an infected person have to lose in being treated with hydroxy-Z under medical supervision?
30 people like this.

Reply 9 - Posted by: WhamDBambam 4/21/2020 4:09:53 PM (No. 386852)
The AP is not a trustworthy or reliable news source.
44 people like this.

Reply 10 - Posted by: poliposter 4/21/2020 4:10:49 PM (No. 386854)
#5, the study was at University of Virginia (VA) hospital, not a Veterans Administration hospital.
12 people like this.

Reply 11 - Posted by: poliposter 4/21/2020 4:11:43 PM (No. 386855)
Oops! #5 I am wrong. I read another article saying it was University of Virginia. And yes, I have been to VA hospitals. Awful places.
11 people like this.

Reply 12 - Posted by: ROLFNader 4/21/2020 4:14:59 PM (No. 386861)
Save your precious time. Don't read anything put out by Ape Pee.
17 people like this.

Reply 13 - Posted by: Crusty_Rusty 4/21/2020 4:15:42 PM (No. 386866)
Absolutely BS FAKE NEWS from a Marxist/Fascist/Commie/Democrap POS. This is exactly opposite from reported results from many other studies especially those that were well conducted in France. Watch the MSM/LSM run with this as though it's news of the Second Coming of Christ. Oh wait a minute. They'll never say that......
21 people like this.

Reply 14 - Posted by: Dino Sayer 4/21/2020 4:15:47 PM (No. 386867)
The people reporting it was at the University of Virginia hospital should read the research, which stakes it was collected from nationwide VA hospitals. Or does the University of Virginia operates hospitals nationwide?
8 people like this.

Reply 15 - Posted by: DVC 4/21/2020 4:22:35 PM (No. 386876)
My hospital worker friend says that the docs in her hospital have had good results, use it. She has a coworker, middle 30s age, extremely ill with Wuhan flu, being treated with both hydroxychloroquine and convalescent plasma, still struggling. This really is seriously dangerous for some, and paradoxically, a large number have no symptoms. Very strange disease.
17 people like this.

Reply 16 - Posted by: Ming 4/21/2020 4:29:24 PM (No. 386880)
File this drek of a story under: who you going to believe, the AP or your lying eyes?
22 people like this.

Reply 17 - Posted by: jeffkinnh 4/21/2020 4:39:35 PM (No. 386891)
And how many seriously ill patients will not be treated with HCQ+ and die anyway. When it is proven that this mixture does have some benefit, how many deaths can we lay at the feet of the AP and their lust to "get Trump" at all costs? "more deaths among those given hydroxychloroquine versus standard care" So what is "standard care"? Are they insinuating that HCQ+ killed more patients? That is highly unlikely since in has not been seen in any other studies PLUS this drug has been in use for almost 100 years and if it had lethal effects it would NOT be in use. "The drug has long been known to have potentially serious side effects, including altering the heartbeat" I believe that is a possible side effect of azithromycin, not HCQ. The OP made some good points and observations. The study isn't really helpful and the reporters massaging of the information is misleading.
16 people like this.

Reply 18 - Posted by: john56 4/21/2020 4:42:18 PM (No. 386895)
Well, darn, that shoots President Trump's plan to turn his $100 in Sanofi stock (held by a mutual fund) into his next billion. (Hydroxycholorquinine is an old drug, generic since 1996, that they inherited when they bought the US operations of Sterling Drug Co. in 1994. If it contributes 1% towards Sanofi's worldwide sales, I'd be suprised).
6 people like this.

Reply 19 - Posted by: VinGoombatz 4/21/2020 4:43:02 PM (No. 386897)
I see no details in the "reporting". Is it possible chloro-q was given as a last resort, in bad cases? That would ensure deaths compared with usual care. Chloro-q possibly is helpful only in early stages of disease. Looks like some bad retrospective science, Marilynn.
10 people like this.

Reply 20 - Posted by: curious1 4/21/2020 4:45:47 PM (No. 386900)
#15, there is now some data indicating there may be more than one version of the virus. Might explain the observed results.
6 people like this.

Reply 21 - Posted by: LC Chihuahua 4/21/2020 4:54:38 PM (No. 386917)
Fake news. The AP just relieved itself in public (again).
8 people like this.

Reply 22 - Posted by: red1066 4/21/2020 5:03:58 PM (No. 386927)
First of all, this is a VA hospital. Only those with really bad medical conditions are in VA hospitals, so if this drug was given as a last resort, it's not surprising the results were less than other studies have shown.
5 people like this.

Reply 23 - Posted by: davew 4/21/2020 5:14:36 PM (No. 386937)
This article shows the classic reason why observational studies can produce erroneous conclusions when the data is misinterpreted. The article contends that a larger number of vets treated with HCQ died than those who received routine standard of care. Unless they were trained in causal analysis they would miss the obvious confounding factor. The vets who received the HCQ were selected precisely because they were much sicker than the untreated cohort and may have been treated either too late to be beneficial or whose immune system was slightly less effective than the untreated people in fighting the virus. Unless the samples are randomized as in an RCT or the confounders are controlled for in causal analysis the comparisons between the two groups are not statistically valid. The only thing worse than bad science is good science in the hands of biased reporters.
19 people like this.

Reply 24 - Posted by: bighambone 4/21/2020 5:18:45 PM (No. 386942)
President Trump never said those drugs would work, he said that he hoped the drugs would work. His point was that if a patient was about to die, that the patient should have the opportunity to voluntarily try any promising experimental drug therapy that might save the patient’s life with a doctor’s OK. By opposing the President’s viewpoint, the Democrats are in many cases effectively shutting down such patients chance for survival.
13 people like this.

Reply 25 - Posted by: Right Time 4/21/2020 5:48:14 PM (No. 386968)
The hydroxy chloroquine really doesn't work to well on east subject who are in the mortuary. If the VA really claims a study with this result, immediately fire those associated. But, I suspect this is just Fake News
4 people like this.

Reply 26 - Posted by: Strike3 4/21/2020 5:53:53 PM (No. 386971)
Front-loaded test, results not valid. This is the only negative outcome in the many tests being conducted so results should be thrown out anyway. Fake news. In other news, a polar bear drowned today because it was a poor swimmer.
7 people like this.

Reply 27 - Posted by: The Remnants 4/21/2020 5:55:14 PM (No. 386973)
These creeps want us so desperately to pay someone gazillions of dollars for some new vaccine when it arrives (probably with little or no testing, but expensive); meanwhile this med has decades of good results for malaria and now has proved to have excellent results for covid-19, but since it has been around awhile is not terribly expensive - CAN'T HAVE THAT. i read an article recently - I believe on- zero hedge - that talked about sick care, rather than health care. That's what the medical community is all about nowadays - sick care. Never read anything from Associated Press - just the headline.
8 people like this.

Reply 28 - Posted by: moebellini3 4/21/2020 5:55:36 PM (No. 386974)
If that scum bag Obama had endorsed that drug this moron would have given it a glowing report. These are sick freakin communists filled with hate. Get it yet.
7 people like this.

Reply 29 - Posted by: inspectorudy 4/21/2020 5:57:17 PM (No. 386975)
AP = Always Prevaricating
7 people like this.

Reply 30 - Posted by: PismoPat 4/21/2020 6:35:12 PM (No. 387007)
There is no indication of the dosage compared to European studies. Other "tests" used fairly high doses.
4 people like this.

Reply 31 - Posted by: bythegates 4/21/2020 6:41:15 PM (No. 387018)
I don't know how people like this can call themselves scientists. An OBVIOUS FLAW is that doctors are likely to not prescribe the meds for less severely sick patients, and more likely to prescribe for the severely ill. So the HCQ takers were more severely ill to begin with. Also, this study only looked at people once they were hospitalized. What about all the people who were saved from needing hosoittalozation thanks to HCQ?
8 people like this.

Reply 32 - Posted by: Skeptical1 4/21/2020 8:30:47 PM (No. 387106)
HCQ is being studied all over the world, in real randomized controlled clinical trials. So far as I can see, only one of these trials has been completed, in China, and it randomized a total of only 60 patients. According to the NIH, 13% of the control patients and none of the hydroxychloroquine-treated patients experienced progression of illness. That's good, but it's just one little trial. The Left will continue to snark HCQ because of Trump, and it's good to hear rebuttals, but I would not invest too much passion into HCQ advocacy until more trial results come in. Especially from overseas.
3 people like this.

Reply 33 - Posted by: Geoman 4/21/2020 8:33:29 PM (No. 387108)
So now, are we to assume that anecdotal data is good only if it is bad?
4 people like this.

Reply 34 - Posted by: bythegates 4/21/2020 9:03:45 PM (No. 387128)
#23 and #31 are correct; here is a quote from bottom of page 12 of the study: "However, hydroxychloroquine, with or without azithromycin, was more likely to be prescribed to patients with more severe disease, as assessed by baseline ventilatory status and metabolic and hematologic parameters. Thus, as expected, increased mortality was observed in patients treated with hydroxychloroquine, both with and without azithromycin."
1 person likes this.

Reply 35 - Posted by: agrunt 4/21/2020 9:20:12 PM (No. 387137)
I am tired of hearing about side effects -- Tens of thousands took this stuff in Viet Nam, I took it, I didn't hear about any side effects. Sop pull your panties up and disregard this crap and use it.
3 people like this.

Reply 36 - Posted by: BGray2 4/21/2020 9:22:24 PM (No. 387138)
They typically only give hydroxycholoroquine and azithromycin to patients who have the worst symptoms and are not responding to other treatments. Basically a "hail Mary pass" at the last minute. Its not surprising that patients under those circumstances have a higher mortality rate than the other patients. Of course facts are irrelevant to readers of AP articles. They'll lap it up like dogs eating their own vomit.
2 people like this.

Reply 37 - Posted by: Sergeant Major 4/21/2020 9:38:24 PM (No. 387152)
#35, I took it for almost a year in Nam and suffered no side effects. This quote from the article "The drug has long been known to have potentially serious side effects, including altering the heartbeat in a way that could lead to sudden death." is completely without merit. My wife took plaquanil for appx five years and the only thing the Rheumatologist wanted was to have her eyes checked quarterly for possible bleeding. And that never happened.
1 person likes this.

Reply 38 - Posted by: hershey 4/21/2020 10:02:28 PM (No. 387169)
Had a good friend who passed recently...went to the local VA hospital because he was spitting blood...they basically said he had some kind of infection...he still felt bad and went to his own MD....turns out he had lung cancer from Agent Orange over in the Nam'....he didn't last 6 months after diagnosis...sad because he survived the Nam...a rocket landed 10' from him and didn't go off..and a couple other wierd things happened to him...
0 people like this.

Reply 39 - Posted by: happywarrior 4/21/2020 10:41:23 PM (No. 387189)
VA Hospital means Veterans Administration Hospital. Just the fact that this is a government entity and most of the government is against PDT I don’t trust it.
0 people like this.

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