Plasma Therapy for COVID-19- A possible breakthrough?

Convalescent plasma therapy aims at using antibodies from the blood of recovered COVID-19 cases, to treat those who are currently severely infected from the novel virus.

With a lot of stakes on drugs, but no results, the medical industry is turning to new technologies in need to desperately slow the current pandemic COVID-19. Recently, as a first, a 49-year-old COVID-19 patient, undergoing treatment, showed positive results to plasma therapy. When administered with fresh plasma along with standard treatment, the patient appeared to have an astonishing improvement post-therapy.

So what is this new convalescent plasma therapy?

A tedious yet effective procedure, convalescent plasma therapy aims to treat current COVID-19 infected patients using the antibodies from the blood of previously recovered patients. The concept is based on the theory that tye antibodies from recovered patients will ave the unique ability to fight this novel virus. It is said to be administered intravenously to someone under treatment. The antibodies will then target the infected cells and fight the virus in the patient under treatment.

“Studies have shown that plasma therapy has been effective in Ebola and in other coronavirus infections like MERS and SARS,” says Dr. P Raghu Ram, President of the Association of Surgeons of India.

Is there a possibility of relapse?

To use the said plasma therapy is no easy. FDA has laid down certain ground rules and the doctor should receive consent from the patient and immediate family for using this novel therapy.

“No serious side effects have been reported with plasma therapy. There could be minor risks which are associated with transfusion of blood“, Dr. Juneja Associate Director at the Institute of Critical Care Medicine, Max Healthcareinformed.

It has been stated, that there have been a few reports of patients with the risk of becoming positive again but its exact cause remains unknown.

“For plasma therapy, we are taking plasma after at least 28 days of clinical recovery of the donor, or at least 14 days after his RT-PCR samples have been tested negative for COVID-19. That’s how we are choosing a donor,” says Dr. Juneja.

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