The large-scale analysis, conducted by Henry Ford Health System, was published Thursday in the peer-reviewed International Journal of Infectious Diseases.
The study examined 2,541 patients who had been hospitalized in six hospitals between March 10 and May 2, 2020.
More than twenty-six percent (26.4%) of patients who did not receive hydroxychloroquine died.
But among those who received hydroxychloroquine, fewer than half that number — 13% — died.
More than 90% of the patients received hydroxychloroquine within 48 hours of admission to the hospital. Scientists say giving the drug early during illness may be a key to success.
The study’s authors also found one concern flagged in previous reports about hydroxychloroquine did not materialize: heart-related adverse events.
“The data here is clear that there was benefit to using [hydroxychloroquine] as a treatment for sick, hospitalized patients,” said Dr. Steven Kalkanis of Henry Ford Health System.
The study scientists point out that other reports about hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for coronavirus that had less positive, mixed, or negative results studied different populations; administered hydroxychloroquine later during illness; used different doses, and/or were not peer-reviewed.
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