Learn more about some of the medications being used off-label to treat people with severe COVID-19.
TUESDAY, April 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- There's a lot of confusion about medications and COVID-19, so experts offer some answers.
There are no proven drug treatments for the illness caused by the new coronavirus, so doctors sometimes use drugs approved for other conditions to treat seriously ill COVID-19 patients. This is called off-label use.
One drug being investigated as a possible COVID-19 treatment is hydroxychloroquine, which is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat malaria, but widely used to treat autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
Hydroxychloroquine, often combined with the antibiotic azithromycin, has been touted as a potential treatment for COVID-19. Neither of the medications are antivirals, and the combination has been shown to cause heart problems in some patients.