An Arizona man died after ingesting chloroquine phosphate in an attempt to protect himself from becoming infected with the coronavirus. The man’s wife also ingested the drug, and is currently under critical care.
The drug chloroquine is used to treat malaria, and some early research suggests it may be useful in treating COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus.
“Given the uncertainty around COVID-19, we understand that people are trying to find new ways to prevent or treat this virus, but self-medicating is not the way to do so,” Dr. Daniel Brooks, medical director for Banner Poison and Drug Information Center, said in a statement.
A press release from Banner Health, based in Arizona, said the husband and wife, both in their 60s, took an additive called chloroquine phosphate used to clean fish tanks, to try to prevent coronavirus.
Within half an hour, both needed to seek emergency medical care. The man later died.
During a press conference last week, President Trump touted the drug for its potential, however the Food and Drug Administration later said it had not approved chloroquine for the coronavirus, and that much more study was needed.
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