The FDA has reportedly authorized the use of anti-malarial drugs hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine and millions of doses will be distributed to hospitals. The FDA reportedly says the risk associated with using the drugs -- which is still deemed an unproven treatment -- may slow the progression of the disease.
The Washington Post notes there have not been any extensive studies or clinical trials for these drugs to treat coronavirus/COVID-19, writing, "There have been only a few, small anecdotal studies showing a possible benefit of the drugs, hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, to relieve the acute respiratory symptoms of COVID-19 and clear the virus from infected patients."
Additionally, experts warn the use of these drugs can have serious and even deadly effects on those with existing heart problems and for individuals who take drugs, like anti-depressants that can affect heart rhythm. Also, experts warn that long-term use of these drugs can lead to the possibility of developing retinopathy, a form of vision loss.
The Doctors stress the use of these drugs should only occur if directed by a doctor and only if someone has carefully considered the possible risks.
*Stay informed on the latest information on the coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization and learn about prevention methods and what to do if you are infected.