One dead after self-medicating with drug praised by President Trump

Grant Boone
March 25, 2020

An Arizona man has died and his wife is in critical condition after they ingested chloroquine phosphate - an aquarium cleaning product similar to drugs that have been named by President Trump as potential treatments for coronavirus infection.

Some of the ones used to treat the disease include experimental antiviral drug remdesivir, which was originally developed to combat Ebola, a HIV-drug combination, malaria drug chloroquine and antiviral drug favipiravir, which China has approved for use for Covid-19.

The statement said that "within thirty minutes of ingestion, the couple experienced immediate effects requiring admittance to a nearby Banner Health hospital", CNN reported. "He said it was because his wife had lupus", the pharmacist said, "but when I asked him for her name and diagnosis, he told me just to put it in his". Still, doctors are adamant that people should NOT take the medication to try to prevent or cure the virus. Per NBC News, the woman in critical care said she and her husband were "afraid of getting sick" and attempted to medicate themselves with chloroquine after seeing Trump discuss the medication on television.

A USA man has died and his wife is in critical condition after the two tried to self-medicate against coronavirus.

Chloroquine is a synthetic form of quinine, which is found on the bark of the cinchona plant.

"Given the uncertainty around COVID-19, we understand that people are trying to find new ways to prevent or treat this virus", Dr Daniel Brooks, medical director of Banner Poison and Drug Information Center, said in a statement. According to NBC News, chloroquine phosphate was listed as an ingredient on a parasite treatment for fish, which the woman said she had to treat her koi fish.

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President Donald Trump answers questions from reporters as U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper looks on during the daily White House coronavirus response briefing with members of his administration's coronavirus task force at the White House in Washington, DC, March 18, 2020.

'HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE & AZITHROMYCIN, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine. They are among a select group of possible therapies the World Health Organization is now looking at as potentially treating or preventing COVID-19, though the effectiveness of the drugs remains unclear.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, renowned disease expert, told CBS on Sunday that the drugs may be effective against the novel coronavirus.

Mr Fauci, who serves on the White House coronavirus task force, is widely seen as the face of the United States response.

At least three people are believed to be hospitalised and reports have spread of high demand of chloroquine leading to pharmacy shortages, partially fuelled by Mr Trump's comments. He said the public should rely on authoritative sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and state health officials for medical advice - not the internet or politicians. Both drugs can cause serious side effects, including vision loss, heart problems or even death, if used incorrectly.

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