FDA-authorized Paxlovid by Pfizer offers no benefit to non-seniors

A study of over 100 thousand patients published in the New England Journal of Medicine on August 24, 2022, shows that oral protease inhibitor nirmatrelvir, used in combination with ritonavir under the brand name Paxlovid, offered no evidence of statistically reducing the rate of hospitalization from COVID among both treated and untreated patients 40 to 64 years of age.

According to the study’s conclusion, “Among patients 65 years of age or older, the rates of hospitalization and death due to Covid-19 were significantly lower among those who received nirmatrelvir than among those who did not. No evidence of benefit was found in younger adults.”

Paxlovid drug label information. Source: NIH

The study comprised of 109,254 patients of Clalit Health Services, the largest Israeli state-mandated health service in the country, that was conducted between January 9, 2022, and March 31, 2022. All patients eligible in the study were 40 years of age or older and were allowed to receive nirmatrelvir therapy during the omicron surge.

Among patients 65 years of age or older, the rate of hospitalization due to Covid-19 was 14.7 cases per 100,000 person-days among treated patients as compared with 58.9 cases per 100,000 person-days among untreated patients.

Among patients 40 to 64 years of age, the rate of hospitalization due to Covid-19 was 15.2 cases per 100,000 person-days among treated patients and 15.8 cases per 100,000 person-days among untreated patients 

Nirmatrelvir effectiveness was notably higher (75% higher for reduced hospitalizations) among patients 65 years of age or older and among patients with current cancer or immunosuppression, according to the study. However, the drug’s uptake was significantly lower among patients with no previous SARS-CoV-2 immunity and within the Arab populations.

Adult patients between 40 and 64 years of age saw no statistical benefit to taking nirmatrelvir regardless of immunization status.

In December of 2021, the FDA authorized Pfizer’s Paxlovid for adults and children ages 12 and older with a positive COVID-19 test and early symptoms who face the highest risks of hospitalization. However earlier this year, a separate study of Paxlovid by Pfizer in healthy adults both vaccinated and unvaccinated, failed to show a significant benefit

The FDA states that PAXLOVID is currently approved or authorized for conditional or emergency use in more than 60 countries across the globe to treat high-risk COVID-19 patients.

The Biden administration has spent more than $10 billion purchasing the drug and earlier this month, President Joe Biden experienced a COVID rebound after taking Paxlovid leaving many critics questioning its effectiveness.

Mario Lotmore

Mario Lotmore is originally from The Bahamas and for the last seven years has called Mukilteo, WA his home. Having lived in every region of the United States has exposed him to various cultures, people, and approaches to life. Lotmore created the Lynnwood Times to represent the character of a diverse and growing Lynnwood. The launching of the city’s community newspaper will only help bring neighborhoods together. Lotmore was an industrial engineer by trade and proven success implementing and managing lean accountable processes and policies within his eighteen years of operations excellence, strategic development, and project management in the aerospace, manufacturing, and banking industries. Over his career he has saved and created hundreds of union and non-union jobs. Lotmore is the President of a Homeowner Association, an active Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics volunteer in his community, and former Boeing 747 Diversity Council leader. Mario’s talent is finding “that recipe” of shared destiny to effectively improve the quality of life for others.

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