An Ohio State University clinical trial is using nitric oxide in an attempt to help keep coronavirus patients off ventilators, The Columbus Dispatch has reported.
Researchers at the university’s Wexner Medical Center are utilizing a portable device to supply inhaled nitric oxide, the first trial in the state that is using such a technique. The goal is to help prevent the progression of the virus in patients who have a mild to moderate case of coronavirus-related pneumonia
“If we can treat patients . . . before they become so ill that they require a ventilator, we believe we can improve patient outcomes and reserve ventilators and hospital resources for the sickest patients,” Dr. Sitaramesh Emani, the clinical trial’s principal investigator, told the Disaptach.
Emani explained that inhaled nitric oxide is a safe and effective treatment to dilate arteries in the lungs and increase oxygen in the blood stream, although it also may have anti-viral properties that could suppress virus replication.
“That’s what’s driving our real hope about this therapy,” the doctor said.
Researchers said the chemical had antiviral benefits when treating SARS patients in 2003-2004.
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