Potential Covid-19 drug azithromycin may up risk of cardiac events

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New York, Sep 17 | New research adds to the growing body of evidence that potential Covid-19 drug azithromycin — a commonly-prescribed antibiotic — may increase the risk for cardiac events in patients.

The study, published in the journal JAMA Network Open, found that if the azithromycin drug is taken with certain other drugs that affect the electrical functioning of the heart, then cardiac events increased.

“Our findings should give researchers and clinicians looking at azithromycin as a potential treatment for Covid-19 pause,” said study author and Indian-origin researcher Haridarshan Patel from the University of Illinois Chicago in the US.

“We found that if taken together with drugs that affect the electrical impulses of the heart, the combination is linked with a 40 per cent increase in cardiac events, including fainting, heart palpitations and even cardiac arrest,” Patel added.

Drugs that affect the electrical impulses of the heart, specifically the interval in the electrical rhythm called the QT interval, are called QT-prolonging drugs.

These drugs include blood pressure medications such as ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers, some antidepressants, anti-malaria drugs such as hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, opioid medications and even muscle relaxers.

Previous studies looking at azithromycin and cardiac events examined specific populations that tend to be older and have more health issues, including Medicaid patients and veterans.

But in this study, the team used a large database containing medical data on millions of patients in the US with a mean age of 36 years old.

The risk of cardiac events with azithromycin was evaluated against amoxicillin, another antibiotic that has never been linked to cardiac events and which has no impact on the QT-interval.

The researchers looked at data from more than four million patients who were hospitalized or visited an emergency department for a cardiac event between 2009 and 2015 who started taking either amoxicillin or azithromycin within five days of their hospital visit.

The researchers found that the likelihood of cardiac events with azithromycin compared with amoxicillin was not significantly higher, with the most common cardiac events being fainting and palpitations.

However, among patients taking both a QT-prolonging medication and azithromycin together, the risk of cardiac events was 40 per cent higher compared with the amoxicillin group.

“Studies looking at using azithromycin to treat Covid-19 or other diseases should very carefully consider its use among patients who are also taking QT-prolonging medications,” Patel noted.

Recently, a study published in the journal Lancet Rheumatology revealed that the combination of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and azithromycin (AZM) has been linked to significant cardiovascular risks.

Source: IANS

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Policybazaar Unveils its new brand campaign "AapKiSideHai"

Policybazaar Unveils its new brand campaign

Akshay Kumar delivers the brand’s promise of always being on the customer’s side

Gurugram, 19th Sept, 2020: Policybazaar.com (Twitter handle: PolicyBazaar), India’s largest online insurance marketplace with over 10 million customers, showcases its commitment to customers in its new television campaign “AapKiSideHai”. The new ad campaign featuring Policybazaar brand ambassador, Akshay Kumar, highlights the brand’s promise of embracing a holistic customer centric approach while helping to bridge the insurance protection gap in India.

Policybazaar’sAapKiSideHai campaign seeks to reassure its customers on being a dependable Insurance partner for them, every step of the way. The brand has always focused on distributing products like term insurance, health insurance, zero commission ULIP’s and motor insurance that are optimal from a customer perspective. Policybazaar is now extending the brand promise beyond the purchase experience to ensure that consumers get the highest levels of service throughout the policy lifecycle.

The new brand campaign reinforces Policybazaar core value of putting the customer first by delivering on its promise of providing a trusted platform for all types of insurance products. The brand is committed to guiding the customer throughout the insurance journey, starting from recommending the right products at affordable pricing, ensuring thatthe policy issuance process is smooth and fast, and, to providing services and claims assistance when needed.

“While we continue to highlight the importance of Health & Term life Insurance through our marketing campaigns, with the brand promise of Policybazaar AapKiSideHai, we also intend to position Policybazaar as a customer centric brand, that is committed to stand by its customers, both pre and post purchase”, said Samir Sethi, Head of Brand Marketing, Policybazaar.com. The new ad series highlights Policybazaar’s unparalleled support to customers, while providing them with the ease of comparing and buying term and health plans online with guidance at each & every step.

Speaking about the TVC launch, Sharat Dhall, Chief Operating Officer, Policybazaar.com said, “Our ultimate aim is to provide 360-degree assistance to customers that starts from when the policy is bought, to provide assistance when the claim is paid out, should such a situation arise. Winning and maintaining customer trust is a strong ethos within the company and this campaign reflects that. At a time when the world is grappling with a crisis like no other, the brand intends to instill confidence in the customers’ buying decisions by assuring them protection of their futures with the right insurance products & thorough assistance throughout the journey.”

The new brand campaign in its series displays moments of indecision that people may have while investing in protection products. It addresses these queries &emphasizes the importance of nurturing a bond with the consumers thereby creating customer delight.

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