First Pill Developed For COVID-19 Treatment Receives FDA Approval

Feb, 2022 - By SMI

First Pill Developed For COVID-19 Treatment Receives FDA Approval

FDA granted authorization to the first oral pill, Paxlovid developed especially for COVID-19 by Pfizer

Pfizer designed an oral treatment especially for COVID-19. The pill called Paxlovid received authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the U.S. The new oral treatment is recommended for people at high risk of COVID-19. Moreover, the treatment is suggested to be taken in five days of development of symptoms. This new treatment is a major ahead to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The emergency authorization (EUA) by FDA will allow this oral treatment of Paxlovid for COVID -19 in children above 12 years of age and adult patients. The oral treatments is designed to focus on individuals having high risk of severe COVID-19, where the treatment needs to be started within five days of development of symptoms. The oral pill is made of two different oral drugs, ritonavir and nirmatrelvir. Ritonavir is a pre-existing medicine that is used for increasing the antiviral capacity of nirmatrelvir. While, nirmatrelvir is a new molecule developed for hindering the replication of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Ritonavir slows down the rate of metabolization of nirmatrelvir, increasing its antiviral capacity. The treatment involves three tablets, where one is ritonavir and two nirmatrelvir, every 12 hours for five days. In the clinical trial of Paxlovid it was found that the treatment decreased the rate of hospitalization or mortality due to COVID-19 by 88% in the subjects who started the treatment within five days of symptoms development.

Furthermore, Pfizer has also indicated that the new oral antiviral treatment would also work against the new variant of COVID-19, Omicron. Hence, the authorization of this treatment by FDA would help to fight against this lethal virus efficiently. However, the FDA noted that the authorization of this new treatment is not directed towards preventing severe infection in those who are potentially exposed to COVID-19.

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