Monday, 05/10/2020, 07:35 GMT+7

Determining the right treatment for President Trump depends on how serious the disease is.

After the news that President Donald Trump had Covid-19 was announced on October 2, health experts were quick to emphasize that the White House boss is likely to fully recover.

However, President Trump is among those at higher risk of serious disease and more susceptible to viral complications. He is 74 years old and is considered obese based on his height and weight index. Besides, the President is also taking statins to control cholesterol.

Tổng thống Trump và Đệ nhất Phu nhân Melania tại sân bay quốc tế Cleveland Hopkins ở Ohio, ngày 29/9. Ảnh: AFP.

President Trump and First Lady Melania at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport in Ohio, September 29. Photo: AFP.

The White House announced that President Trump will be treated with caution at the Walter Reed Military Medical Center. "This is the right thing to do," said Dr. Jonathan Reiner, CNN's medical analyst and expert at George Washington University, tweeted after the White House announcement.

"Medical care for the President at the White House is not too difficult and you can take him to an extremely secure facility with world-class staff," Reiner said. mention of Walter Reed. "But you will only do that when you feel his respiratory condition deteriorates."

According to a source who understands the matter, Trump has had a fever since the morning of October 2. Before that, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows told reporters that the President had only "mild symptoms". Those who interacted with Trump on October 1 said his voice sounded husky, but most people believe that the reason is because he spoke too much during the campaign.

On the afternoon of October 2, Trump's doctor, Sean Conley, said that the President received a mixture of antibodies from the biotech company Regeneron, and added zinc, vitamin D, and famotidine heartburn medication. , melatonin and one aspirin daily.

"It is more likely that the President will make a full recovery," said Dr. Leana Wen, medical analyst from CNN, former Baltimore medical commissioner, assessing and adding that 40% of people infected with nCoV have no symptoms. and it will go away on its own. "We have a long way to go to see if the President is showing symptoms and if his illness is getting worse," Wen said.

In the treatment of Covid-19, it is very important that the patient develops flu-like symptoms, difficulty breathing and coughing. As a result, health workers can focus on "symptomatic treatment," Dr. Wen said. "But there are no antibiotics or antivirals that we can use at this time."

Most patients with mild symptoms are able to monitor the disease at home on their own, and the doctor will not recommend any treatment. But they also need to be closely monitored in case the condition worsens and the patient develops more severe symptoms.

Some experts believe that people who test positive for nCoV and are recovering at home should consult their doctor about using a blood oxygen saturation meter to check their oxygen levels and whether do they need more supportive care.

In Trump's case, it was too early to tell how the disease progressed. Covid-19 can have mild onset but more severe symptoms sometimes appear after 7 to 10 days, says Dr. Esther Choo, professor of emergency medicine at the Oregon School of Health and Science.

The incubation period ranged from two to 14 days, averaging about 5 to 7 days, according to Wen. "After that time, it can take a week, or even longer, for the illness to get worse," she said.

Overall, "people at the age of 74, the hospitalization rate is about 30%, the rate of special care is 8 to 10% and the death rate is between 2 and 4%", Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Head of Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital, said.

According to Walensky, risk factors such as obesity and heart disease can exacerbate the condition of a Covid-19 patient; however, it is difficult to predict the extent to which risk factors interact. together.

"During the first 5 to 11 days, most of you will experience headaches, muscle aches and unwell," Walensky said, adding that there is not much the doctor can do to treat outpatients. "From day 11 to day 14, if the disease progresses, the patient will find it difficult to breathe, they develop respiratory symptoms and may require hospitalization."

Severe patients may need special care while their bodies fight the virus, such as mechanical ventilation to increase oxygen intake or dialysis to prevent the effects of nCoV on the body. However, these remedies themselves cannot treat the virus.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any Covid-19 treatment. However, there are still some exploratory treatments in place, for example antiviral remdesivir.

The FDA in May issued an emergency use license (EUA) for antiviral remdesivir to treat hospitalized patients with serious medical conditions.

In August, the FDA also issued the EUA with a method for treating disease plasma. Plasma is drawn from the blood of cured Covid-19 patients. "The known potential benefits of a product outweigh its known potential risks," emphasized the FDA.

If necessary, President Trump can access off-label approved Covid-19 treatments under the "emergency relief" process, said Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Education Center. Vaccine education at Children's Hospital Philadelphia, a specialist in virology and immunology, said.

This means, he may be approved for use of an experimental product outside of the clinical trial.

"I would be very surprised if the President couldn't use them," Offit said, adding that such remedies are only necessary when Trump develops serious, dangerous symptoms.

"Most of those treatments are for hospitalized patients," said Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Medical Security Center. If President Trump has severe symptoms, the first step of treatment will be "something as simple as giving the patient a ventilator or an IV".

In addition, the drug remdesivir is an option, in addition to dexamethasone, a steroid used in patients on oxygen therapy.

"Those are the two standard methods of care," Adalja said.

US companies are testing several monoclonal antibody therapies to treat Covid-19. Many researchers suggest that this approach may be done before symptoms appear.

But Offit notes that people should probe this approach cautiously because at times, it is impossible to know exactly when a patient has been exposed to nCoV. "If you apply it within the first two days of exposure, the patient may be protected from the disease but if it follows, it is more likely that the method will become useless," he said.

According to Dr. Walensky from Massachusetts General Hospital, the Regeneron company recently shared promising initial test results that show their blend of antibodies can reduce viral load and improve symptoms. in Covid-19 patients

Regeneron on October 2 confirmed they had provided an 8-gram dose of this drug to the President through an "emergency relief" program. The company emphasizes that the current supply of drugs is still very limited and requires that their use be recommended and approved by the patient's doctor in "extremely rare cases".

Reiner commented that his decision to give Trump an experimental monoclonal antibody drug showed how concerned the White House was about the President's health after he was diagnosed with Covid-19.

"In fact, the President's use of Regeneron's medicine speaks to their level of anxiety. 7 million Americans have been infected with Covid-19 and basically no one is taking the drug," commented Reiner.

Vu Hoang (According to CNN)


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