Pharmacotherapy. 2020 Nov;40(11):1072-1081. doi: 10.1002/phar.2467.
INTRODUCTION: Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is presently being used off-label or within a clinical trial.
OBJECTIVES: We investigated a multinational database of patients with COVID-19 with real-world data containing outcomes and their relationship to HCQ use. The primary outcome was all-cause mortality within 30 days of follow-up.
METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort study of patients receiving HCQ within 48 hours of hospital admission. Medications, preexisting conditions, clinical measures on admission, and outcomes were recorded.
RESULTS: Among patients with a diagnosis of COVID-19 in our propensity-matched cohort, the mean ages ± SD were 62.3 ± 15.9 years (53.7% male) and 61.9 ± 16.0 years (53.0% male) in the HCQ and no-HCQ groups, respectively. There was no difference in overall 30-day mortality between the HCQ and no-HCQ groups (HCQ 13.1%, n=367; no HCQ 13.6%, n=367; odds ratio 0.95, 95% confidence interval 0.62-1.46) after propensity matching. Although statistically insignificant, the HCQ-azithromycin (AZ) group had an overall mortality rate of 14.6% (n=199) compared with propensity-matched no-HCQ-AZ cohort's rate of 12.1% (n=199, OR 1.24, 95% CI 0.70-2.22). Importantly, however, there was no trend in this cohort's overall mortality/arrhythmogenesis outcome (HCQ-AZ 17.1%, no HCQ-no AZ 17.1%; OR 1.0, 95% CI 0.6-1.7).
CONCLUSIONS: We report from a large retrospective multinational database analysis of COVID-19 outcomes with HCQ and overall mortality in hospitalized patients. There was no statistically significant increase in mortality and mortality-arrhythmia with HCQ or HCQ-AZ.