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NSAID Use By COVID Patients Not Associated With Adverse Outcomes Or Mortality – Danish Study

NSAID Use By COVID Patients Not Associated With Adverse Outcomes Or Mortality – Danish Study

Source : 'HBW Insight'

Taking ibuprofen or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is not associated with mortality or worsening of symptoms in COVID-19 patients, according to a study of almost 10,000 Danish citizens.

The research – carried out by the Danish Medicines Agency’s Data Analytics Centre and the University of Southern Denmark – found that NSAID use was not associated with 30-day mortality, hospitalization, ICU admission, mechanical ventilation, or renal replacement therapy in Danish individuals who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2.

The findings rebut claims widely circulated during the early months of the pandemic that NSAIDs could worsen SARS-CoV-2 infection, leading the French health minister to warn against their use.

These concerns prompted the Danish research, with the study’s authors noting that data on the safety of ibuprofen and other NSAIDs were urgently needed to guide clinicians and patients on how to use these drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A population-based cohort study using Danish administrative and health registries was conducted to identify all Danish residents who tested positive for the infectious agent of COVID-19 during the period 27 February 2020 to 29 April 2020.  A total of 9,236 SARS-CoV-2 positive individuals were eligible for inclusion, with the researchers grouping them into users and non-users of NSAIDs. Of the total, 248 were taking an NSAID drug.

The risks of being hospitalized, admitted to the intensive care unit, or dying were compared between the two groups.

Overall, risks for all studied outcomes were similar between users and non-users of ibuprofen and other NSAIDs (see table).


The results below show that there was no statistically significant difference between the patients using NSAIDs and the patients not using NSAIDs.

Commenting on the results, the Danish Medicines Agency said the study confirmed the European Medicines Agency’s announcement in March that there was no scientific evidence to suggest that ibuprofen worsened the condition of patients infected with COVID-19. ("EMA Quashes Claims That Ibuprofen Worsens Infection From Coronavirus" "HBW Insight" )

The Danish study supports the findings of a drug safety review conducted by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) advisory body the Commission on Human Medicines back in April.

The Commission found that there was “currently insufficient evidence” to establish a link between the use of ibuprofen, or other NSAIDs, and contracting or worsening of COVID-19.

In a statement endorsed by the National Health Service and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, the MHRA said sufferers of the coronavirus could self-medicate with either ibuprofen or paracetamol to control symptoms such as fever or headache.

“The lowest effective dose of ibuprofen should be used for the shortest duration necessary to control symptoms,” is the official advice. Prior to this review, the official advice of the NHS has been to avoid ibuprofen and instead take paracetamol when experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. ("Insufficient Evidence Ibuprofen Worsens COVID19 Says UK Regulator" "HBW Insight" )

By Tom Gallen