Can COVID-19 Symptoms Come Back After Using Paxlovid? What We Know

  • Some people who have taken Pfizer Inc.’s COVID-19 antiviral report that their symptoms return after completing the 5-day treatment.
  • In Pfizer’s clinical trial, 1 to 2 percent of people treated with the antiviral still tested positive for COVID after finishing the treatment.
  • Experts state that, while these cases should be studied, Paxlovid still remains a key treatment to COVID-19.

Some patients who have taken Pfizer Inc.’s oral antiviral Paxlovid are reporting that their COVID-19 symptoms returned after initially improving when they completed treatment.

Here’s what we know so far about this rebounding of symptoms.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement on May 24 that some people treated with Paxlovid experience “COVID-19 rebound” between two and 8 days after their initial recovery.

These people feel a return of symptoms or a positive COVID test.

This has occurred in both unvaccinated individuals and those who have been vaccinated.

It’s not clear how common this is.

Only one case has been reported so far. shown up in the medical literatureAs a preprint

In this report, the patient’s symptoms cleared up and then returned about a week after treatment. This coincided with an increased level of virus or viral load in his body.

Others have also posted about their rebounding symptoms. social mediaOr, report them to Food and Drug Administration.

This type of rebounding is currently rare.

In Pfizer’s clinical trial, 1 to 2 percent of people treated with the antiviral had a positive COVID-19 test — or an increase in the amount of virus detected — after finishing the treatment.

However, this type of rebound also occurred in people who received the inactive placebo, so it’s not clear if it is related to the drug, said the FDA.

Aside from that, the agency stated that those whose symptoms recurred during the trial were not at greater risk of death or hospitalization. There were no signs that the coronavirus developed resistance to the drug.

It’s not clear why some people see a recurrence of their symptoms.

It may be “part of the the natural history” of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, the CDC said, independent of whether someone was treated with Paxlovid or was vaccinated or boosted.

U.S. government researchers are already planning studies on this.

Experts state that although these cases of rebound should be studied, they should not be interpreted as a failure by Paxlovid.

According to the CDC, case reports show that people with COVID-19 recovery experience mild illness. However, there are no reports of severe illness. People’s symptoms improved in an average of three days without additional treatment.

In the Pfizer clinical trialThe antiviral significantly reduced the risk of COVID-19-related death or hospitalization by almost 90% among patients at high risk of severe illness.

Dr. Jeffrey Klausner, a clinical professor in the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, said Paxlovid is a “life-saver” — decreasing the amount of virus present in the body, reducing symptoms, and preventing illness from getting worse.

“The medication works exceptionally well at preventing people at risk — [such as] elderly, obese or those with other medical conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure — from ending up the hospital,” said Klausner.

“That’s what is important — preventing people from going to the hospital,” he added.

Scientists have suggested that there may be an underlying cause, but it is not clear. 10-day course of PaxlovidAlthough it is possible that additional treatment may be required, the CDC stated that there is no evidence to suggest that people need additional treatment with Paxlovid and other antiviral COVID treatments.

Dr. John MouraniMedical director for infectious disease at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, said if symptoms recur, “the first thing patients should do is contact their primary physician for a COVID antigen check.”

They can also use an at home test kit. Some doctors recommendThese are essential for anyone who takes Paxlovid.

Scientists don’t know whether all people whose symptoms recur can spread the virus to others, but they recommend taking steps to protect others from infection.

“If symptoms return after treatment, there is a possibility that someone may still be contagious,” said Klausner. “People should continue isolating and wearing a mask until their symptoms are gone, or until they test negative on a rapid test.”

The CDC recommends that people with COVID rebound treat it as an initial infection and follow the agency’s guidance on isolation.

This includes resuming isolation and isolating for at most five days and wearing a mask around other people for ten days after the onset of rebound symptoms.

Paxlovid can be found in the United States. authorized by the FDAUse only for people 12 years or older who have tested positive in coronavirus and are at high risk of severe illness.

People at greater risk include people with risk factorsDiabetes, obesity, cancer, chronic lung disease, or any other condition that weakens the immune system.

Paxlovid can be received by both vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons. Vaccination provides additional protection.

“Overall, having the vaccine and therapeutic options in combination are great tool to protect from severe COVID,” said Mourani.

The prescription is required to order the antiviral medication. Treatment must be initiated within five days of symptoms onset.

You will need to present your positive test results to your doctor and review your risk factors in order to get a prescription. If you are eligible, some telehealth providers offer virtual visits to assess and prescribe Paxlovid.

You can also visit one test to treat locationsThe federal government supports the program. These sites offer testing and have Paxlovid available.

In late April, President Obama made a new push for Paxlovid to be available to Americans who could profit from it.

Klausner is still concerned that the most vulnerable are not being treated and are not aware of the treatment.

“We have to do a much better job promoting the medication to at-risk people and making it easier to get,” he said.

Source: Health Line

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