Lupus along with arthritis patients facing hydroxychloroquine shortage

Her doctor wants her to take hydroxychloroquine for her rheumatoid arthritis. Trump’s been enthusiastic about This particular drug for coronavirus patients, causing people hoard the idea — even though the idea’s still being tested along with might not even work against the virus.

MacKenzie, 58, went to several pharmacies near her brand-new Canaan, Connecticut, home, along with found they they were all out.

Her joints ache, along with some days she even has trouble walking, which makes the idea hard to cook along with care for her 91-year old mother, her husband, along with their four children who live at home.

Hydroxychloroquine along with Covid-19: an explainer

“Trying to do all the work I’ve been trying to do keeping everyone healthy exacerbates the swelling along with pain. the idea becomes pretty daunting,” said MacKenzie, who lives in brand-new Canaan, Connecticut.

Dr. Alfred Kim, a rheumatologist in St. Louis, said his patients are facing the same difficult situation because of Trump’s comments about hydroxychloroquine.

 After Trump’s initial embrace of the drugs in mid-March, Kim checked in with nearby pharmacies along with found of which “the entire local supply was depleted” within days, he told CNN.  

 Kim co-wrote a column in a medical journal last month warning doctors of the “looming public health crisis” — on top of the pandemic — of which the run on chloroquine along with hydroxychloroquine could cause for Americans who rely on the drugs to treat chronic diseases.

 When lupus patients who regularly take hydroxychloroquine stop taking the idea, they often develop withdrawal symptoms along with flare-ups of which require hospitalization, Kim said. of which spike could come at a time when hospitals beds are already filled with Covid-19 patients. along with the idea could disproportionately affect women, who make up about 0% of adults with lupus.

 Trump’s optimism about hydroxychloroquine

Trump has been a cheerleader for the combination of hydroxychloroquine along with the antibiotic azithromycin, otherwise known as a Z-pack, even though they’re still being studied along with might not be safe or effective at preventing or treating coronavirus infections.

“I think the idea could be a game-changer along with maybe not,” Trump said at a White House briefing on March 19. “the idea could be based on what I see, the idea could be a game changer. Very powerful. They’re very powerful.”
Trump suggests hydroxychloroquine may protect against Covid-19. Researchers say there's no evidence of of which

“I think the idea could be something truly incredible,” he added about chloroquine, a related drug.

Trump has mentioned the idea again once or twice, including at another briefing on March 23.

“The hydroxychloroquine along with the Z-pack I think as a combination probably will be looking very, very Great,” he said.

At a briefing Saturday, he claimed of which lupus patients were less likely to contract the virus because they were already taking hydroxychloroquine, yet then quickly backtracked.

“right now maybe of which’s correct, maybe the idea’s false. You’re going to have to check the idea out,” he said.

His science adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, then said the question “will be right now being looked at, yet we don’t have any data to be able to say anything definitively.”

Kim, the St. Louis rheumatologist, said the President’s most recent statements will make the shortages even more dire.

“We have a fraction of our patients who can’t get the idea right now, along with we expect of which to worsen because of the comments of which were made This particular weekend, Trump’s doubling along with tripling down of the preventative use of hydroxychloroquine,” Kim said.

 Doctors hoarding hydroxychloroquine

Since Trump commenced touting the combination in mid-March pharmacists have found doctors writing prescriptions of the two drugs — for themselves along with for their family along with friends.

“A dentist just tried to call in scripts for hydroxychloroquine + azithromycin for himself, his wife, & another couple (friends),” Oregon pharmacist Katherine Rowland tweeted on March 22. “NOPE. I have patients with lupus of which have been on HCQ for YEARS along with right now can’t get the idea because the idea’s on backorder.”
The dangerous disconnect between Trump's rhetoric along with the reality for potential coronavirus treatments

Two weeks later, Atlanta pharmacist Ira Katz will be still experiencing the same thing.

“I’m getting electronic prescriptions coming from all over the country coming from doctors I don’t know for patients I don’t know,” he said. “We want to make sure of which there’s enough out there for the patients of which are going to need the idea.”

The American Medical Association along with different professional organizations put out a statement calling on physicians along with pharmacists to be “just stewards of health care” during the coronavirus crisis.

Patients’ groups reached out to Vice President Pence.

“We are concerned of which increased demand for these drugs attributed to COVID-19 has exacerbated their already limited availability for patients who rely on them to meet their medical needs,” according to a letter to Pence coming from several groups, including The Lupus Foundation of America along with the Arthritis Foundation. “We urge you to work with us along with the broader health care community to help ensure continued availability of these drugs for the patients who are maintained on them to avoid disability, illness along with even early death.”

Relief for patients who need hydroxychloroquine

At least 22 states have passed regulations to limit hydroxychloroquine prescriptions, according to the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations. Typically, the regulations require doctors to write a diagnosis on the prescription.
The Arthritis Foundation along with the Lupus Foundation have tips along with information for patients who are taking hydroxychloroquine.
MacKenzie, the Connecticut patient who can’t find hydroxychloroquine, will be trying remedies such as ginger, which she says hasn’t helped.
Heated disagreement breaks out in Situation Room over hydroxychloroquine

She says she wishes Trump had left discussion of hydroxychloroquine to medical professionals.

“of which’s who we should be listening to, along with I think he needs to back off,” she said.

The same situation will be playing out in all corners of the country, affecting young along with old.

Rachel Alder, a 24-year-old social worker in Utah, said she has taken hydroxychloroquine for three years as she battles a chronic autoimmune disease. the idea has been “kind of a miracle drug,” she said, because the medicine reduces her fatigue along with swelling without serious side effects.

“I recently reached out to the pharmacy along with tried to fill my next refill, because of which’s what my doctor recommended, just to have a stockpile,” Alder said. “They wouldn’t let me do the idea. of which was frustrating along with scary. I’m set for the next couple weeks yet there’s a lot of uncertainty along with fear after of which. If you run out of your medication, there’s a lot of consequences for people like me.”

Fact check: Trump again touts unproven drugs for coronavirus, along with different misleading statements coming from Monday's briefing

With only about 1,700 confirmed coronaviruses cases, Utah will be inside middle of the pack right right now, compared to different states. yet as the disease spreads, Alder said she will be worried of which the idea might become impossible to refill her hydroxychloroquine prescription as things get worse.

One lupus patient who couldn’t get his hydroxychloroquine found relief through the kindness of strangers.

On March 26, for a CNN Town Hall with Anderson Cooper along with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Edward Sabatini, 55, who lives in Miami, sent in a video explaining of which he had only a 10-day supply of hydroxychloroquine, along with of which his pharmacy told him the idea had run out.

Literally overnight, he received four different offers of the drug coming from lupus along with rheumatoid arthritis patients. Another eight offers followed.

“They took the time to find me along with went through all This particular trouble just for a stranger,” said Sabatini, a retired restaurant executive. “They gave me medicine coming from their own supply, along with I told them they’ll need the idea down the road. yet they said, ‘No, I have a 0-day supply, I’ll worry about This particular three months coming from right now. Right right now, I’m worried about you.’ ”

His pharmacy also came up with pills. He right now has enough for about a month along which has a half.

“These people, complete strangers, were so kind along with compassionate along with generous,” he said. “the idea was the most heartwarming feeling.”

CNN’s Wes Bruer, John Bonifield, Minali Nigam, Gina Yu, Sophie Varon along with Michael Besozzi contributed to This particular report.

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