Indian army says anti-fibrotic drugs effective for coronavirus treatment

KATHMANDU: The Indian Army has said anti-fibrotic drugs, that have been used in the treatment of the patients suffering from Covid-19 related lung fibrosis and breathlessness, were found to be effective in the recovery of four such patients in Pune, Maharastra.

According to the statement released by Indian Army, "The researchers at the Pune-based Army Institute of Cardiothoracic Sciences (AICTS) have found this therapy very effective in this subset of COVID-19 patients and they were safely tolerated as well."

The results were achieved by commencing anti-fibrotic therapy (tablet Nintedanib) in four such patients. They have recovered and discharged from the hospital.

"This is a novel strategy to tackle the lung fibrosis to treat subset of COVID-19 patients," the statement reads.

The anti-fibrotic drugs used for other types of lung fibrosis secondary to auto-immune diseases (arthritis-related) and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, have been used in Covid-19 related lung fibrosis for the first time in India.

"The lung fibrosis is usually seen in those patients who are detected late and have extensive pneumonia. Many a time, it becomes difficult to wean these patients off oxygen in spite of anti-inflammatory therapies like steroids and they remain in ICU for a long period of time,' the Indian Army said.

"The therapy proved to be very helpful in reducing the oxygen requirement of these patients and they were discharged home on minimal oxygen after few weeks."

However, the army statement also stated that these were early results and more research is being undertaken in this field to identify the patients who are likely to benefit from the therapy.

With inputs from PTI