Dr. Tarek Alam was interviewed by TrialSite News and reported “astounding results” from the administration of Ivermectin and Doxycycline in COVID-19 patients. Dr. Alam acknowledged the need for a randomized controlled trial as he was administering the regimen under an approval from Bangladesh Medical College Protocol. The doctor based in Dhaka has now achieved his goal and will launch a randomized controlled trial August 3, 2020. The Nation’s highest medical research body, the Bangladesh Medical and Research Council (BMRC), approved the clinical trial. It’s a green light. Can Dr. Alam show the world that in fact Ivermectin does work at least better than compared to some far more expensive medications approved for COVID-19 such as Remdesivir or Favipiravir?
The May Interview
TrialSite interviewed Dr. Alam back in May, 2020. The Dhaka-based physician and professor commented that his initial work wasn’t a clinical trial but rather an ongoing hospital-specific, approved off-label use of medication for some COVID-19 patients with escalating conditions. Specifically, they combined a dosage of ivermectin 200mcg/kg once orally with Doxycycline. The doctor reported “astounding results” but that he understood a randomized controlled trial was still needed to secure sufficient “evidence.”
That Time is Now
Dr. Alam has pulled it off and will commence a formal, randomized controlled trial at his place of employ, the Bangladesh Medical College. The trial include 150 coronavirus patients with mild symptoms at two hospitals, including Bangladesh Medical College (BMC) and Uttara Adhunik Medical College Hospital (UAMCH) in the capital starting August 3, 2020.
Approved by the university on July 28, a 20-member team will be involved led by Dr. Alam, principal investigator, along with Dr. Rubauil Morshed of the Somman Foundation who will serve as co-investigator. The two month clinical trial will be supervised by MBC and BRMC, as reported by the Dhaka Tribune. Last Wednesday, a source at the BMRC reported to the Dhaka Tribune that the BMC received the approval papers. The medical team plans on holding a press conference.
As in the interview with the TrialSite, the Dhaka Tribune reports the claim that the ivermectin and doxycycline combination regimen reduces the patient’s symptoms by 50% in just three days; the patients on average become virus-free within four days thereafter. Alam reported that when COVID-19 tests are conducted on these patients, they on average are 100% free of virus within anywhere from four to fourteen days.
For comparison Remdesivir in hospitalized cases reduces the number of illness days from 14 days down to 11 days. Of course, there are observational reports (including some from TrialSite) that Remdesivir can reduce the death rate; however, there is no formal evidence of that as of yet.
“The People’s Medicine”
If the study proves that Ivermectin in fact works, as so many physicians in various parts of the world say it does, then the BRMC is prepared to support the cheap and equitable distribution of the drug to combat COVID-19. In fact, they are considering the naming of the drug “People’s Medicine” and will charge 40 Taka or about .47 cents (US).
About the Bangladesh Medical and Research Council
Bangladesh Medical Research Council is an autonomous national research body that carries out research on medical and health sciences and plans and prioritize research in Bangladesh and is located in Mohakhali, Dhaka, Bangladesh. The BMRC was formed back in 1972 under the orders of the president of Bangladesh at the time. It functions under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Call to Action: TrialSite will monitor the study and connect with Dr. Alam in early October to check on the status. Sign up for the daily newsletter.