16 Apr What does the FAA know that others don’t?
A recent FAA directive instructs, “Use of chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine to prevent coronavirus infection is disqualifying while on the medication and for 48 hours after the last dose before reporting for flight or other safety related duties.” Apparently for the safety of pilots and passengers the FAA is concerned about self-administered hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine and the risk of fatal heart arrythmias.
It is true that in a physician monitored practice chloroquine is safe to use. But patients are screened for cardiac risk before putting patients on the medication, and then they are monitored appropriately. Young patients who need chloroquine for malaria prophylaxis tend to do quite well. Patients with obesity and diabetes tend to have more risk for cardiac disease. There is a propensity for the seriously ill COVID19 patients to be obese, diabetic, and often with cardiovascular disease. An antecdotal study from France that is often referenced implemented daily EKGs on patients taking hydroxychloroquine to insure that they were not developing fatal heart arrythmias. People who self-medicate with chloroquine from their Koi pond are not receiving daily EKGs.
Although President Trump has touted hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine as potential treatments for COVID19, he has ignored the potentially dangerous side effects. This type of disinformation can cost lives, despite his assurance that “it’s not going to kill anybody.” Well, it actually has killed somebody. Several scientific studies are underway testing the safety and efficacy of these drugs, but until those studies are completed everyone, including the president, should refrain from promoting them as safe and the cure of COVID19.
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