Therapies to Prevent Progression of COVID-19, Including Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin, Zinc, and Vitamin D3 With or Without Intravenous Vitamin C: An International, Multicenter, Randomized Trial
Monitoring Editor: Alexander Muacevic and John R Adler
Karin Ried,1,2,3Taufiq BinJemain,4 and Avni Sali5
Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer
A total of 237 hospitalized patients with COVID-19 aged 22-99 years (mean: 63.3 ± 15.7 years) were enrolled in the study. Almost all patients were vitamin D deficient (97%), 55% were severely vitamin D deficient (<25 nmol/L) and 42% were vitamin D deficient (<50 nmol/L); 3% had insufficient vitamin D levels (<75 nmol/L), and none had optimal vitamin D levels.
Of the patients, 73% had comorbidities, including diabetes (35%), heart disease (36%), and lung disease (34%).
All but one patient (99.6%; n = 236/237) treated with HCQ, AZM, and zinc with or without high-dose IV vitamin C (IVC) fully recovered. Additional IVC therapy contributed significantly to a quicker recovery (15 days versus 45 days until discharge; p = 0.0069).
Side effects such as diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting, reported by 15%-27% of the patients, were mild to moderate and transient. No cardiac side effects were observed.
Low vitamin D levels were significantly correlated with a higher probability of admission to the intensive care unit (ICU) and longer hospital stay.
Sadly, one 70-year-old female patient with heart and lung disease died after 17 days in ICU and 22 days in the hospital. Her vitamin D level was 6 nmol/L on admission (i.e., severely deficient).
Our study suggests that the treatment protocol of HCQ, AZM, and zinc with or without vitamin C is safe and effective in the treatment of COVID-19, with high dose IV vitamin C leading to a significantly quicker recovery.
Importantly, our study confirms vitamin D deficiency to be a high-risk factor of severe COVID-19 disease and hospitalization, with 97% of our study’s patient cohort being vitamin D deficient, 55% of these being severely vitamin D deficient, and none had optimal levels.
Future trials are warranted to evaluate the treatment with a combination of high-dose vitamin D3 in addition to HCQ, AZM, and zinc and high-dose intravenous vitamin C.Keywords: vitamin d, intravenous vitamin c, zinc, hydroxychloroquine, covid-19 treatment, covid-19
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