ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46)-- As medical professionals scramble to find treatments for the cornonavirus several drugs have pushed to the forefront including hydroxychloroquine.

The president has even given his stamp of approval by promoting the medication but a new study is urging caution.

“It’s a great malaria drug, it’s worked unbelievably, it’s a powerful drug on malaria and there are signs that it works on this (cornonavirus). Some very strong signs,” said President Trump during one of the many press conference where he promoted hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for the virus.

As a result, the government purchased 29 million hydroxychloroquine pills, many of them are being used to treat VA patients, but now a study shows the medication could cause more harm than good.

“What I think this study showed is that we can not rush to judgment ,” said Web MD’s Chief Medical Officer, John Whyte referring to the VA hydroxychloroquine study.

Researchers looked at 368 VA patients those given the drug, those given the drug combined with another medication, and those not given the drug and the results were overwhelmingly negative for those prescribed any hydroxychloroquine.

“It was a negative study which means it didn’t show any benefit and that’s concerning and we can’t dismiss it. If anything some folks did worse with hydroxychloroquine alone,” added Whyte.

And worse is no exaggeration, the study documented those given the medication had a 95% higher risk of death.

“What it showed that hydroxychloroquine with or without azirhoromycim didn’t change at all whether or not you were put on a ventilator and if you just used hydroxychloroquine we actually saw a greater number of deaths than those patients that were not put on it," said Whyte.

And while those like the President continue to promote the hydroxychloroquine, Whyte says more research needs to be done and he urges causation.

“I know we’re in the middle of an epidemic but we don’t throw science out the door.”

It’s important to note this study has not yet been reviewed by other scientists.

To view the full study, click here

Copyright 2020 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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