Chloroquine is used in the treatment of Malaria and certain diseases such as Arthritis and Lupus. Specialists do not consider it an effective medicine or treatment for the Coronavirus, but they say it has the ability to reduce the viral load or some of its side effects. The drug has been used for several years now to fight bacteria that spread and multiply inside cells. It can be prescribed in precise doses that are known in advance for each individual case, so as not to cause any side effects.
Chloroquine was discovered in 1934 by Dr. Hans Andersag who worked for Bayer laboratories. Before that, the natives of Peru used an extract of a plant that was widespread in the region and was called “Cinchona”. This extract was used to treat fever in the 17th century, before entering Europe to be used for the same purpose under the name “Chinchona officinalis”, which forms the basis of Chloroquine and was first used in the treatment of Malaria.
Today, this drug is considered essential, safe and effective by the World Health Organization, in particular because it has anti-viral effects that act by increasing the acidity inside the body, thus weakening the virus and its cells, which need a low pH level.
Chloroquine is an affordable medicine. It has been used for almost 70 years, although some doctors consider it to be very toxic to humans. But today it is marketed in a number of countries around the world under different trade names, including “Nivaquine”, “Resoshina” and “Plaquenil”. It causes many side effects such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, skin irritation, vision problems, heart rhythm disorders and liver problems. An overdose can result in death, and the effective dose is close to the deadly dose. In 1961, three children died from an overdose within two hours of taking the medicine.
Chloroquine is used today in many countries for the treatment of some cases of Coronavirus infection, although the World Health Organization had sounded the alarm about its potential dangerousness, calling for extensive clinical trials before authorizing its use.