IIT Madras designed trial shows efficacy of Indomethacin in treating mild, moderate COVID patients

The study was conducted at Panimalar Medical College and Research Institute by Rajan Ravichandran, an IIT Madras adjunct faculty.

IIT Madras designed trial shows efficacy of Indomethacin in treating mild, moderate COVID patients IIT Madras (Official)
Press Trust of India | Apr 22, 2022 - 9:57 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Trials designed by researchers at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras have shown efficacy of Indomethacin, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, in treating hospitalised mild and moderate COVID-19 patients, officials said on Friday. According to the research team, their work promises a new line of treatment for mild COVID-19 infection as Indomethacin is an affordable drug. The findings of this study have recently been published in the prestigious peer-reviewed journal Nature Scientific Reports.

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The study conducted at Panimalar Medical College and Research Institute was led by Dr Rajan Ravichandran, an Adjunct Faculty at IIT Madras and Director Nephrology at MIOT hospitals. Indomethacin, with more than 20 lakh prescriptions per year in the US alone, is an established drug widely used since 1960s to treat various types of inflammation-related ailments. These Indian researchers are the first to show the efficacy of indomethacin through a randomised clinical trial though the scientific basis has been researched by Italian and US scientists.

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"Knowing that one of the deadly effects of the COVID infection is inflammation and the cytokine storm, we decided to study the non steroidal anti inflammatory drug, Indomethacin. The scientific evidence strongly shows the anti-viral action against Coronavirus. Indomethacin is a safe and well-understood drug. I have been using it in my profession for the past 30 years," said Rajan Ravichandran. Ravichandran said that Indomethacin works with all variants. "We had done two trials, one in the first wave and the other in the second wave. The results were the same. I sincerely hope ICMR takes note of this study and includes indomethacin in COVID treatment protocol," he added.

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Highlighting the Research findings, R Krishna Kumar, Professor at IIT Madras, said, "Out of a total of 210 admitted patients 107 were randomly allocated to a control group, treated with paracetamol and standard care of treatment. 103 patients were administered indomethacin along with standard care of treatment. The patients were monitored every day for symptoms such as cough, cold, fever and muscle pain along with oxygen saturation". None of the 103 patients who received indomethacin developed oxygen desaturation. On the other hand, 20 of the 109 patients from the control group were desaturated with oxygen saturation levels below 93 cent, he said.

"Indomethacin group patients recovered from all symptoms in three to four days. It took double the time for the control group. Liver and kidney function tests showed no adverse reaction. The fourteenth day follow up showed that nearly half of the control group patients had several discomforts while a few indomethacin patients complained only of tiredness," he said.

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