Role of favipiravir in the treatment of adults with moderate to severe COVID-19: a single-center, prospective, observational, sequential cohort study

Balint Szabo et al.

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Received date: 2nd December 2020

Preliminary data suggested a role for favipiravir (FVP) in COVID-19 treatment. A single-center, prospective, observational, sequential cohort study was performed among consecutive adults hospitalized with PCR-confirmed COVID-19 between March–July, 2020. Patients were screened for inclusion by a priori criteria, and included in the favipiravir cohort if standard-of-care (SOC)+FVP, or the non-favipiravir group if SOC±other antivirals without FVP were administered for >48 hours. Treatment allocation was done per national guidelines. For COVID-19 diagnosis and severity, ECDC and WHO definitions were utilized. Primary end-point was disease progression (14-day all-cause death, mechanical ventilation or immunomodulatory therapy). In all, 75 patients were included per cohort. In the FVP group, chronic heart disease (36/75, 48.0% vs. 16/75, 21.3%, p=0.01) and diabetes mellitus (23/75, 30.7% vs. 10/75, 13.3%, p=0.01) were more prevalent, hospital stay (18.5±15.5 days vs. 13.0±8.5 days, p=0.01) was longer. Disease progression (17/75, 22.7% vs. 10/75, 13.3%, p=0.13), 14-day all-cause death (9/75, 12.0% vs. 10/75, 13.3%, p=0.8) and need for mechanical ventilation (8/75, 10.7% vs. 4/75, 5.3%, p=0.22) were similar between groups. Immunomodulatory therapy was administered frequently among patients receiving FVP (10/75, 13.3% vs. 1/75, 1.3%, p=0.01). In this study, favipiravir did not seem to affect disease progression, but further research is warranted.

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This is an abstract of a preprint hosted on a preprint server, which is currently undergoing peer review at Scientific Reports. The findings have yet to be thoroughly evaluated, nor has a decision on ultimate publication been made. Therefore, the results reported should not be considered conclusive, and these findings should not be used to inform clinical practice, or public health policy, or be promoted as verified information.

Scientific Reports

Nature Research, Springer Nature