Oral Ribavirin for treating non-influenza respiratory viral infections

Added March 30, 2020

Citation: Gross AE, Bryson ML. Oral Ribavirin for the Treatment of Noninfluenza Respiratory Viral Infections: A Systematic Review. Annals of Pharmacotherapy 2015; 49(10): 1125-35

What is this? COVID-19 is a viral infection of the respiratory tract. Oral ribavirin has been suggested for the treatment of other non-influenza respiratory viral infections.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for research into the clinical outcomes of patients treated with oral ribavirin for symptomatic non-influenza respiratory viral infections. They restricted their search to articles published in English between 1972 and 2015 and did their search in June 2015. They identified 12 retrospective and 3 prospective studies. There were no randomized or controlled prospective studies.

What works: Nothing noted.

What doesn’t work: Nothing noted.

What’s uncertain: Oral ribavirin may improve outcomes for some adults with non-influenza respiratory viral infections (such as those who are immune-compromised) but its use should be based on a patient-specific risk and benefit assessment.

The effects of oral ribavirin for children with non-influenza respiratory viral infections is uncertain.

 

Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the coronavirus (COVID-19) but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the basis of this summary alone.

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