The Lucerne family doctor Andrea Ludwig administered the drug opaganib against Covid-19 for the first time in Switzerland and has achieved success.
The family doctor Andrea Ludwig administered the drug opaganib against Covid-19 for the first time in Switzerland in Lucerne.
She treated several patients with it as a supplement to conventional therapy.
Both patients improved rapidly.
For severe coronary disease, there have so far been only a few drugs that have provided relief for patients. Now the Lucerne doctor Andrea Ludwig tested the drug opaganib on patients with the coronavirus.
The family doctor told the “Luzerner Zeitung” two examples. According to the doctor, a 49-year-old woman who fell ill with the South African corona variant was doing very badly. After about a week, she administered the drug opaganib in addition to conventional therapy. The patient’s condition improved rapidly within three days. “The result with opaganib as an additional therapy is spectacular,” the doctor told the newspaper.
In another case, an 82-year-old high-risk patient contracted the Brazilian variant of the coronavirus. According to the report, she was also in poor condition. After treatment with opaganib, her condition also improved rapidly. In addition, according to the doctor, it is astonishing that the corona test was negative in both patients after just three days.
So far, Ludwig has only treated a handful of these cases. «So far I have treated five patients with opaganib and the same result has been achieved with each of them. My patients recovered within a few days, ”said Ludwig in relation to 20 Minuten. “They were also able to test negative for Corona a few days later,” Ludwig continues.
When asked how long the treatment with the drug lasts, Ludwig says: “The drug is taken twice a day for 14 days. The advantage of opaganib is that it can be taken at the same time as other drugs, such as antibiotics. “
«Opaganib also minimizes the chance of suffering from long-term effects of the virus. It also prevents the virus from mutating. ” According to Ludwig, the side effects of opaganib are comparable to those of mild anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or Dafalgan. The family doctor also mentions that this drug can also be taken after Covid has been cured, for example to combat lung problems caused by the disease.
Not officially approved in Switzerland
According to a report in the “Luzerner Zeitung”, Ludwig became aware of the drug through specialist articles and preclinical studies. The product is a new chemical substance with a proven triple effect on the pathological-physiological processes associated with Covid-19. According to the doctor, this is unique. Originally, opaganib was developed to treat bile duct tumors and prostate cancer.
The fact that opaganib is not only effective against cancer has been nothing new for the manufacturer RedHill Biopharma for years. The drug is said to have antiviral and anti-inflammatory effects and thus prevent the replication of the viruses. “These are exactly those properties that also help against Covid-19 diseases,” says the operational manager Gilead Raday.
It is not yet officially approved in Switzerland. Under the designation “compassionate use”, however, non-approved drugs may be used in particularly serious cases of illness in which approved drugs do not work satisfactorily.
Lucerne Cantonal Hospital is reluctant
Andrea Ludwig describes opaganib as a very good drug with potential. She can also imagine giving any remaining opaganib pills to hospitals or doctors if she is interested. The Lucerne Cantonal Hospital is cautious at the request of the “Luzerner Zeitung”. “At the LUKS, we do not use any substances whose effectiveness has not been properly documented,” says Philipp Kaiser, senior physician for infectious diseases and hospital hygiene. According to Kaiser, it would be very desirable to have more and more effective drugs for the treatment of Covid-19.
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