Low dose dexamethasone reduces deaths in patients hospitalised with COVID-19 who need ventilation, according to preliminary results from the RECOVERY trial.
The drug was also found to reduce deaths by one-fifth in other hospitalised patients receiving oxygen only, but no benefit was seen among COVID-19 patients who did not need respiratory support.
The chief investigators from the University of Oxford trial said that the findings represent a “major breakthrough” which is “globally applicable” as the drug is cheap and readily available.
Peter Horby, Professor of Emerging Infectious Diseases at the University of Oxford and a chief investigator on the trial, added, “This is the only drug that has so far been shown to reduce mortality, and it reduces it significantly. It is a major breakthrough.”
Source: BMJ, 16 June 2020