Source: Editor, Register-Mail:

President Trump has been severely criticized for his “promotion” of hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19. His opponents claim that the drug has only anecdotal evidence of benefits. That’s funny; especially coming from many of the same Democrats who have been pushing the legalization of marijuana for its alleged health benefits. Marijuana’s benefits are also anecdotal. But there is a significant difference. Marijuana has never been given the benefit of legitimate scientific testing. That is the fault of the system that has been in place over at least a century of both Democrat and Republican administrations. Blame both, not just one or the other. Since it is (still) illegal on the federal level to even possess marijuana, it couldn’t be tested by the one agency that has jurisdiction: the Food and Drug Administration. Nor could independent analysis of testing be submitted to the FDA, for the same legal reasons.

Hydroxychloroquine, by contrast, has been tested by the FDA, albeit not for coronavirus (yet). However, it has been used as a treatment for that disease by doctors, professional scientists, in many parts of the world. They do NOT report it as a “miracle” cure (although some reporters have used the term) because it has not proven to be 100% effective. In fact you’d be hard pressed to find any drug or treatment that is 100% effective for its prescribed purpose. Some reports have indicated that hydroxychloroquine is effective, in some cases, in as little as several hours. Others say a few days or a week or two. The disparity of these reports is significant and indicates the problems with the anecdotal quality of the information. Nevertheless, the results are reported by medical doctors in dangerous situations.

More trust can be placed in the reported results of Hydroxychloroquine than in the medicinal effects of a drug that is known to cause brain damage in very young people who use it. More controlled, scientific testing needs to be done on EACH of these drugs, but Hydroxychloroquine has been effective in a life or death situation. The side effects of this drug have been known and documented over many years. Let’s use it until a vaccine comes along that is more effective and quit trying to make points against a president whom you hate. — Charlie Gruner, Knoxville

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