Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use is not associated with increased mortality or severity of COVID-19, according to a study published online May 7 in The Lancet Rheumatology.
Thomas M. Drake, M.B.Ch.B., from the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom, and colleagues conducted a prospective, multicenter cohort study involving patients admitted to the hospital with confirmed or highly suspected severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 infection leading to COVID-19 between Jan. 17 and Aug. 10, 2020; data were included from 72,179 patients from 255 health care facilities. The effects of NSAIDs were examined; NSAID use needed to be within two weeks prior to hospital admission.
The researchers found that 5.8 percent of patients were recorded as taking systemic NSAIDs before hospital admission. Balanced groups of NSAID users and nonusers were obtained following propensity score matching (4,205 patients in each group). No significant differences were seen in severity at hospital admission between the groups. NSAID use was not associated with worse in-hospital mortality, critical care admission, requirement for invasive ventilation, requirement for noninvasive ventilation, requirement for oxygen, or occurrence of acute kidney injury after adjustment for explanatory variables.
“For clinicians and patients, our findings should provide reassurance that NSAIDs can be used as indicated in the community without increasing the severity of COVID-19,” the authors write.
One author from the study disclosed financial ties to Integrum Scientific; one author of the editorial disclosed ties to Novartis.