Based on a catalog of every COVID-19 treatment documented in medical literature, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine found that physicians have reported using more than 100 different off-label and experimental treatments to fight the virus.
"We hear a lot about the same handful of drugs, but we show here that there are many more currently in use than those that have already made headlines. Anything that shows promise anecdotally still needs to be rigorously tested in a clinical trial to see if it is effective and safe," said the study's lead author David C. Fajgenbaum, in a press release.
The study reviewed around 2,700 published papers from around the world to develop a comprehensive inventory of all of the treatments that doctors have utilized throughout the pandemic. The research team hopes that the catalog will be used as a resource to spot potential candidates for further study in clinical trials.
"We can't win this fight if we don't take stock of the tools that are already being used and search for new ones that could be effective. While off-label use is happening all over the world, there's currently no system in place to track it, so we felt like we had to create one," said Fajgenbaum.