[Rushtalk] Man with COVID Who Said Goodbye to Family Says Malaria Drug Had Effect in 1 Hour, Saved His Life
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Sun May 10 17:39:13 MDT 2020
Man with COVID Who Said Goodbye to Family Says Malaria Drug Had Effect
in 1 Hour, Saved His Life
PillsIsabel Pavia / Getty Images(Isabel Pavia / Getty Images)
By James Morganelli
Published March 24, 2020
A Florida man says he took a chance at the brink of death and it saved
After being diagnosed with pneumonia and COVID-19, Rio Giardinieri, a
52-year-old manufacturing executive, said he went through living hell,
according to KTTV.
Giardinieri said the illness threw his body into a tailspin with nine
days of searing back pain. For a week, he said he was isolated in the
ICU, where, though placed on oxygen, he could still hardly breathe.
Last Friday night, he said found himself on his deathbed and out of
options when doctors gave him the grim news that there was nothing more
they could do.
Giardinieri set to calling friends and family, telling them he would not
make it. Hardest of all, he said his goodbyes to his wife and their
And then a friend forwarded him an article about an old and well-known
anti-malarial drug — hydroxychloroquine — that saw promising results in
a study in France.
Giardinieri said he then contacted an infectious disease doctor.
“He gave me all the reasons why I would probably not want to try it
because there are no trials, there’s no testing, it was not something
that was approved,” Giardinieri explained.
But after explaining that he didn’t have much time left, Giardinieri
said the doctor approved the drug for him and a nurse administered it 30
Should doctors ask patients if they want to try anti-malarial drugs to
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99% (727 Votes)
1% (10 Votes)
Just an hour after being placed on the medication by IV, he said his
body reacted strongly, and by morning, he had no symptoms.
Giardinieri said he has since been issued several more doses and doctors
hope to release him once the illness has left his system and he can no
longer infect others.
“To me, there was no doubt in mind that I wouldn’t make it until
morning,” Giardinieri said. “So to me the drug saved my life.”
So should these supposed “wonder” drugs or combinations thereof be
issued to the general public to fight COVID-19? In short, it’s
Matthew Herper writing for STAT breaks down the responses favored by
President Donald Trump and the medical team around him.
“In an emergency, like the exploding pandemic of the coronavirus that
causes Covid-19,” Herper asked, “how much data should doctors require
before they use a medicine?”
“[A French] study doesn’t show that patients lived longer or were more
likely to recover, but instead shows that the amount of virus in the
blood was reduced much faster in the patients who took
hydroxychloroquine and even faster in the six patients who took the
combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin,” Herper wrote.
“That result is encouraging, but for patients who are not gravely ill,
it doesn’t tell how to weigh the side effects of hydroxychloroquine
against the potential benefits.”
Obviously, no healer wants to prescribe cures that will make already
suffering patients sicker.
For patients that are on death’s door, it could make sense to offer them
the option of using these drugs that have not been fully vetted as cures
But it also makes sense for doctors to give patients with moderate
symptoms the choice to take the drug and become part of a voluntary
force to more quickly determine patient outcomes.
If this fight against the virus really is a war, a battlefield mindset
could be better suited than a boardroom one.
James V. Morganelli’s work has appeared in The Federalist, and he is the
author of the award-winning "The Protector Ethic: Morality, Virtue, and
Ethics in the Martial Way."
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