That said, chloroquine is not without side-effects, including headaches, dizziness and stomach problems up to and including diarrhea. All of which would be preferable to dying of coronavirus.
Meanwhile, US physicians aren't waiting for the trial results - as prescriptions for choloroquine have surged from 531 weekly prescriptions to 1,290, according to recent tracking data from IQVIA, cited by Raymond James (via BI).
The drug has become so popular that the UK has added both chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine to a list of drugs which cannot be exported for fear that there will be a shortage in the country.
Early reports of success should be 'taken seriously' according to Italian scientist Andrea Savarino, who has worked at the Italian National Institute of Health since 2006.
During the 2003 outbreak of SARS — also a coronavirus — Savarino showed in laboratory research that chloroquine may be a useful weapon against it. But by the time his research was published in The Lancet in November 2003, the outbreak had dissipated and there were no human cases available to test.
"There has been a number of press releases, unfortunately not yet papers, but even the local experiments are things that should be taken seriously," Savarino told Business Insider. "Chloroquine plus the HIV inhibitors has produced interesting results, at least curative results, both in China and Australia." -Business Insider
Another drug which has shown significant promise for COVID-19 is Avigan, which has shown to shorten COVID-19 infections from 11 days to 4, as well as drop fever in patients from 4.2 days to 2.5 days after treatment is started.
This is good news!! As much as there are many labs working on a vaccine for coronavirus there have also been lots working on a treatment, which would hold us over until a vaccine is ready. There was a story on, I believe it was Global, the other day about a company that was using an AI to search for a single molecule that would kill the virus, but it would of course be best if a drug already available does the trick. Even if it isn't a cure, anything to reduce the outbreak would be great!