Int J Infect Dis. 2022 Jul 8:S1201-9712(22)00413-1. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2022.07.019. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: To compare the effects of intravenous dexamethasone and methylprednisolone on the treatment of inpatients with COVID-19.
METHODS: In this randomized clinical trial, 143 patients under 80 years of age with moderate to severe COVID-19 were enrolled and randomly assigned to two groups: dexamethasone (8 mg/day) and methylprednisolone (60 mg/day in two divided doses). The primary outcome was the length of hospital stay and the secondary outcomes included: duration of oxygen therapy, absolute leukocyte and lymphocyte count, hypokalemia, hyperglycemia, ICU admission, and mortality in the two groups for 28 days. Data were analyzed by SPSS 26 using t-test, chi-square and ANOVA.
RESULTS: The duration of hospitalization was significantly (p<0.001) shorter in the dexamethasone group in compared with methylprednisolone group [8 (95% CI:6-10) and 11 (95% CI:7-14), respectively]. In addition, duration of oxygen therapy in the dexamethasone group [7 (95% CI:5-9)] was significantly (p<0.001) shorter in compared with methylprednisolone group [10 (95% CI:5.5-14)]. The mortality rate was 17.1% (95% CI: 8.1-26.1) in dexamethasone group and 12.3% (95% CI: 4.6-20.0) in methylprednisolone group which was not statistically significantly (P=0.46).
CONCLUSION: Results showed better effectiveness of 8 mg/day dexamethasone compared to 60 mg/day methylprednisolone based on the shorter hospital stay, which can be taken into consideration in the therapeutic protocol of COVID-19.
TRIAL REGISTRATION: IRCT20210223050466N1.