Medical approaches for Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)

Added April 2, 2020

Citation: Morra ME, Van Thanh L, Kamel MG, et al. Clinical outcomes of current medical approaches for Middle East respiratory syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Reviews in Medical Virology 2018; 28: e1977

What is this? Like COVID-19, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is an acute respiratory disease caused by a coronavirus. Some of the drugs given to patients with MERS are being considered for the treatment of patients with COVID-19.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for research evaluating the treatment of patients with MERS. They restricted their search to articles published after 1 January 2012 but did not restrict by language of publication. They did their search in June 2015. They identified 10 case reports, 4 observational studies and 2 case series.

What works: The combination of ribavirin and interferon might be effective for the treatment of MERS, if given promptly and with monitoring of adverse events.

What doesn’t work: Corticosteroids did not show benefits on survival of patients with MERS.

Interferon did not show benefits on mortality rate or duration of survival for patients with MERS.

What’s uncertain: Nothing noted.


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