Initial results of plasma therapy on four COVID-19 patients encouraging: CM Arvind Kejriwal

  • Two of the four patients may be discharged from the hospital soon; plasma therapy has shown positive results: CM Arvind Kejriwal
  • Plasma therapy for 2-3 more patients will be tried soon, then we will ask the union to permit plasma therapy for serious patients across Delhi: CM Arvind Kejriwal
  • I appeal to the patients who have recovered from Corona to donate their plasma to save the lives of the people: CM Arvind Kejriwal

New Delhi: Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday addressed a press briefing on the initial positive results of the use of plasma treatment to COVID-19 patients. Speaking in the presser, CM Arvind Kejriwal said that in the last few days, they have tried plasma therapy on four patients at Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital and the therapy has yielded positive results. He appealed to the recovered patients to donate their plasma to help other patients recover and contain the fatalities caused by the deadly virus. He also said that Delhi would ask for permission from the center to use plasma therapy for all serious coronavirus patients based on the next trials of the therapy.

CM Arvind Kejriwal said, “Our efforts in the fight against Corona are two-fold, one, how to contain the spread of Corona which includes social distancing, lockdown and various other measures, and two, how to control the deaths caused by the pandemic.”

A few days back, CM Kejriwal had informed the media that the Central government had permitted the Delhi government to try plasma therapy on the patients recovering from Corona. “Once a person recovers from Corona, anti-bodies are formed in his blood, which is then transferred into a recovering person’s body. We got the trial permission for patients admitted to the LNJP hospital, and we have tried the therapy on 4 patients and the results are satisfactory. We have Dr. Sarin, who is the head of ILBS hospital, and is monitoring the whole project,” added the CM.

Dr. Sarin said, “ILBS functions as an autonomous body under the Delhi government, and a team of senior doctors are leading the plasma therapy project. Our initial plan was to use plasma therapy as per the age-old traditions, as it had also been used in the 1900s. This virus has three phases, first is when the virus enters the body, second is the pulmonary phase which affects the lungs and causes difficulty in breathing. The third phase is when cytokines are released which produce substances that can kill the virus. The third stage involves high risk as it can lead to organ failure. If the person is treated through plasma therapy in the second stage itself, we can neutralize the virus as well as stop organ failure. So, we can treat a person who is in the second stage and has not reached the third stage. We have seen positive results of plasma therapy in the first four patients. We will also be testing the therapy on 2-3 patients in the LNH hospital, and I hope that it works for the better. Our main aim through this therapy is to not let any sick person reach the third stage, which we call the ‘cytokine storm’, and cure their lung infection as well. But along with the benefits, we also have to know that only the people who have recovered from Corona will have to give their blood. We need people to show their patriotism by donating blood so the others can be treated. We have people who lost their lives because we did not get blood from anywhere and our team was depressed thinking whether we do not have such people who are willing to help other people. The plasma is extracted from the blood of the person who has recovered and the rest of the blood goes back into their body. Donating blood is also good for your longevity and you feel young as new blood is developed. We also take extra care of the donor and check them for any symptoms, hemoglobin, weight and all precautions are taken during the process. Yoy donation can help save the lives of many patients across Delhi. Plasma therapy is also inexpensive as compared to the other medical treatments and medicines that our country cannot afford to import from other countries. I would like to appeal to the people who have recovered from Corona and give their blood, and we will be able to tell better results in the next 10 days. The good news is that two out of the four patients on whom the plasma therapy has been tried may be discharged from the hospital today or tomorrow. The remaining two have not shown any reaction from the plasma transplant.”

CM Arvind Kejriwal said, “The plasma transplant on two out of the four patients was done on Tuesday. Both of them were in ICU, and the MD of LNJP has told me that they will be shifted to the ward today. The respiratory rate of the first patient was 30 when it should be 15 and the oxygen saturation level was 85% which should be 95%. After the plasma therapy, their respiratory rate is 20 and the oxygen saturation level is 98%. This has been observed in all the patients whose respiratory rates and oxygen saturation levels have improved. The two patients will be discharged from the ICU and the remaining two patients have also shown excellent results. A patient who was in a very serious condition before the plasma therapy will now soon be discharged.”

“We had got the permission of limited trials by the central government. They had permitted us to conduct the trial on some patients admitted to LNJP hospital and then notify them of their success for further therapy trials. After the next 2-3 more trials, we will apply for permission for plasma therapy to be given to serious Corona patients across Delhi. These are the initial results, this should not be treated as a cure for Corona. This has come as a ray of hope to us, and doctors are trying their best to save the lives of their patients,” CM Kejriwal said.

CM Arvind Kejriwal appealed to the people recovered from the Corona. He said, “It is the responsibility of the people who have recovered to come forward and help those who are still recovering. Your plasma will be transferred only into those patients who are very critical. You will be saving the lives of people. All those who have recovered and have been discharged will get a call from us, we will send the car for you and the process will be done under the careful supervision of our experienced doctors. I want to appeal with folded hands to come forward and help.”