The situation in Italy is dire when it comes to COVID-19. Authorities and science are doing the impossible to make progress in combating this virus. Tocilizumab is a drug that treats moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. It can also treat polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis (PJIA) and systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis (SJIA).
A Chinese -Italian Team in Napes, Italy has been experimenting with this drug to fight Covid-19. This news was spread in the Italian press and from the sources of Italian secure communications: RAI-TV
A collaboration between the Colli Hospital, the Cancer Institute of Naples and Chinese doctors, it was verified that “Tocilizumab” can give positive results in the care of people infected with Coronavirus.
Two patients from Naples immediately responded
The drug was administered to two patients hospitalized at Cotugno Hospital (in Naples), suffering from severe Covid-19 pneumonia last Saturday. 24 hours after the infusion, encouraging improvements were highlighted, especially in one of the two patients, who arrived at the hospital as a particularly critical case. This was reported by the Neapolitan hospital of the Hills.
The same drug has been used in China in 21 patients and now for the first time has been administered in Italy in Coronavirus patience.
Based on this experiment it is currently evaluated if treating other critically ill patients is recommended.
The International team
The result was made possible thanks to a great team effort mentioning: the Oncology of the Azienda dei Colli by Vincenzo Montesarchio, the Oncological Immunotherapy and Innovative Therapies of Pascale by Paolo Ascierto together with the virologist Franco Buonaguro, and some Chinese doctors, including Wei Haiming Ming from the First Affiliated Hospital of University of Science and Technology of China as well as the team of doctors from Cotugno, composed among others by Rodolfo Punzi, director of the department of infectious diseases and infectious diseases, Roberto Parrella, director of Uoc Diseases respiratory infectives, Fiorentino Fragranza, director of the Uoc Anesthesia resuscitation and intensive care, Vincenzo Sangiovanni, director of the Uoc Systemic infections and immunosuppressed, Nicola Maturo, head of the Infectivology First Aid always by Cotugno and Luigi Atripaldi, director of the Microbiology laboratory and virology.
The Chinese experience
Paolo Ascierto and Vincenzo Montesarchio explained out how 21 patients had been treated. All of them showed a visible improvement already in the first 24-48 hours after treatment. Treatment included a single solution It acted without interfering with the protocol therapeutic use based on antiviral drugs.
According to Gunther Franke, a pharmacist in Cologne, Germany this news may be good also for Roche Pharma, the manufacturer of the medicine. 4 injections sell for 1900,00€, 12 injections for 5800,00€
Side effects could be severe and could include an infection of the upper breathing channels, extremely high cholesterol, pneumonia, dizziness, headaches, a build-up of water in arms and legs, chronic cough and depression, among others.