“Extra’s” Billy Bush and Dr. Armand Dorian spoke with Dr. Mehmet Oz today via FaceTime about the latest news surrounding the coronavirus.
Many are wondering about treatments and medications that could help battle COVID-19.
Dr. Oz explained that existing anti-virals for treating HIV and Ebola could help. “They are similar approaches to what might work for blocking coronavirus and stop the virus from replicating. The beauty is the drugs already exist so you just have to repurpose them, you don’t have to invent them from scratch you don’t have to prove their safety, theoretically they will be out there pretty quickly. We just need to fund the basic research in this country to show that it is effective.”
Dr. Dorian added, “The fact that these medications have already been tested on humans is a huge leap for us, we can actually start using them and repurposing them.”
What about the drug hydroxychloroquine? Dr. Dorian said, “We are actually giving this medication to some of our COVID-19 positive patients, and it looks like it is actually helping.”
Dr. Oz also talked about other ways to battle the virus, saying, “For the first time I can see how we can attack this infection in several different ways. Obviously the vaccine, which is 15 to 18 months away — if they rush it, maybe within a year — but that’s not going to help us next season.”
He went on, “We need to get through these next eight weeks with social distancing but what that buys us is the ability for some of these new drug approaches, including convalescent plasma, which is taking antibodies from people who already have survived coronavirus and giving it to critically ill people.”
There are reports from China that stem cells could help. Dr. Dorian answered, “I’m very excited that there are people working on this, any good news is good news, but I don’t want to build a false sense of security that somebody has a cure. We’re not there. We are just starting this process.”
Dr. Oz is feeling confident about the coming weeks saying, “Across the board, the nation is getting a clear insight that if we can buy the medical system a little bit of time this won’t be a catastrophe it will be a bad memory, and there is a big difference.”
He also addressed whether sex is okay during quarantine, explaining, “A great way to deal with the confinement issues is to be intimate — that is what humans have always done. I’ve called a lot of experts about this and first of all, the coronavirus is not in the male fluid and secondly, if you are living and sleeping in the same bed there is a pretty good chance you are being exposed as much as it would take to get sick… so there is a benefit and doesn’t seem to be much risk.”
Dr. Dorian added, “If it is with your partner in your house and you are both healthy that is fine, but unfortunately that demographic, those kids, hear these things and think it is time to drink, party and have sex — that is the exact opposite,” he went on, “It is for the people who know each other, they are partners, they know they are healthy, they are not symptomatic and together in a house, that’s fine.”