Fox News and Trump’s love affair with hydroxychloroquine seems to have ended

You may have noticed that Trump is no longer touting the virtues of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine as a miracle cure for Covid-19. While not in the same class of insanity as suggesting the injecting of disinfectants, this was still dangerous and has resulted in there being a run for this unproven treatment, resulting in those patients who need it to treat their lupus and rheumatoid arthritis not getting it. In a preliminary study conducted by the Veterans Administration with 368 patients that has not been peer-reviewed, no benefits were observed and there seemed to be extra deaths.

About 28% who were given hydroxychloroquine plus usual care died, versus 11% of those getting routine care alone. About 22% of those getting the drug plus azithromycin died too, but the difference between that group and usual care was not considered large enough to rule out other factors that could have affected survival.

Hydroxychloroquine made no difference in the need for a breathing machine, either.

Researchers did not track side effects, but noted a hint that hydroxychloroquine might have damaged other organs. The drug has long been known to have potentially serious side effects, including altering the heartbeat in a way that could lead to sudden death.

It turns out that Fox News, which had been vigorously promoting this drug earlier as a Covid-19 treatment, has quietly stopped touting it, which may be the reason Trump has also dropped it because tends to repeat things that he hears on his favorite media sources.

Here is a supercut of Fox News personalities and their guests breathlessly promoting this drug earlier.


  1. Pierce R. Butler says

    Politico reports otherwise:

    … Now there is another drug, remdesivir, with positive early scientific data.

    Much of MAGA world wants little to do with it. … said David Rapp, a psychology professor at Northwestern University who studies how misinformation shapes beliefs and memory.

    The hydroxychloroquine boosters, he said, “might find the alternative idea as not being pure, in the sense that it doesn’t come from Trump. It’s coming from other sources that they might not trust.”

    … “Fauci loves insanely expensive drugs and hates cheap plentiful ones or any hint of preventative supplementation. You see how quickly he praised #remdesivir and has only scorn for #hydroxychroloquine?” tweeted commentator Bill Mitchell, who Trump has been retweeting this week.

    … “Anti-vaxxers read something about autism being caused by vaccinations, and they won’t let that go even though there’ve been refutations of the original claims,” he [Rapp] said. “That information has been floating out there and either it’s become part of their argument, or it’s become part of their identity, part of who they are, part of how they make claims.”

    “Maybe,” he added, “hydroxy has a similar kind of effect on these particular audiences.”

  2. jrkrideau says

    Trump appears to have found a new miracle drug.

    This looks pretty bad. It is possible that remdesivir is working but the story over the last couple of days reeks of Trump lies and stock price manipulation . It damages Dr Fauci’s credibility, as well.

    Remdesivir: Gilead wins with unimpressive results announced by press release

    Hilariously enough, if we follow one of the twitter links, we can even read a tweet from Dr Didier Raoult criticizing the study.

    @ 3 Tabby Lavalamp
    His magas are still pushing in on Twitter

    Idiots do not read their e-mails. The memo went out this morning, first thing.

  3. says

    TWIV was reviewing studies of Remdesivir and one large study performed in Wuhan during the outbreak showed no effect. It’s not a surprise but it was worth trying and they did.

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