Monday, June 6, 2022

The return of convalescent plasma as a treatment for Covid

 As evidence accumulates, it appears that convalescent plasma helps some patients with Covid.  Here's an article from Medpage

COVID Convalescent Plasma Finds a Therapeutic Role. — Growing evidence shows benefits in the immunocompromised

by Arturo Casadevall, MD, PhD, Jeffrey P. Henderson MD, PhD, Brenda J. Grossman, MD, MPH, Michael J. Joyner, MD, Shmuel Shoham, MD, Nigel Paneth, MD, MPH, and Liise-anne Pirofski, MD June 19, 2022

"In the dark days of the early COVID-19 pandemic, when there was no known therapy, COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) brought a ray of hope. COVID-19 survivors, community organizers, clinicians, regulators, and blood bankers collaborated to quickly bring CCP to patients. First used at the end of March 2020 in the U.S., 40% of all hospitalized patients were being treated with CCP by October 2020, considerable progress for a treatment without pharmaceutical industry support.

"Since those early days, CCP use has largely fallen off based on insufficient evidence of efficacy in hospitalized patients and the availability of other therapies. But growing evidence has shown benefits of CCP in a population with diminished treatment options and vaccine responses: the immunocompromised. This population encompasses about 3% of the population and their needs have been relatively neglected in treatment guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic.


"As the pandemic progressed, further evidence showing that CCP was effective when used early and with high antibody content emerged, strengthening support for the FDA EUA in specific groups. However, with evidence of widespread benefit being considered insufficient in the broader patient population, CCP was largely branded as ineffective, collections dropped, and little or no CCP was available when Omicron surged in early 2022.


"The continued needs of immunocompromised patients and the discovery that CCP obtained from vaccinated convalescent donors possess extremely high levels of antibodies that neutralize all known variants to date, including Omicron, have promoted a CCP comeback. CCP use is now recommended for immunocompromised patients by multiple major professional organizations, including the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) and the Association for the Advancement of Blood and Biotherapies (AABB).



Sunday, April 25, 2021

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