15 May HCQ as COVID-19 treatment modality and the potential electrical cardiac rhythm irregularities
While Hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with Azithromycin has been presented as a possible treatment modality for COVID-19, it is still considered investigational and has not been approved by the FDA.
Hydroxychloroquine has been used in combination with Azithromycin for the treatment of novel COVID-19. While we do not wish to advocate the use of this drug combination, we are highlighting the health risks of the combination of Hydroxychloroquine with Azithromycin for treatment of COVID-19.
The combination or single-use of these drugs can lead to severe electrical cardiac rhythm irregularities. Healthcare professionals must be aware of potential risks, at-risk-populations, monitoring capabilities, and how to treat when problems arise.
- HRS/ACC/AHA recommendations to mitigate risks associated with HCQ administration:
- Withhold drug in patients with baseline QT prolongation
- Monitor cardiac rhythm and QT interval; witthod if QTc > 500 msec
- Correction of hypokalemia and hypomagnesemia
- Avoid other QTc prolonging agents
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