UNCONFIRMED: DO NOT SHARE
A drug normally used to treat altitude sickness can also be used to treat symptoms of COVID-19.
Unconfirmed. There is no known treatment for COVID-19 yet.
The YouTube video claims that coronavirus and high-altitude sickness, more technically known as high altitude pulmonary edema, display alarmingly similar symptoms. Given this, it argues that acetazolamide, the drug used in relieving altitude sickness symptoms, should be recommended for patients with COVID-19 symptoms.
The drug, commercially known as Diamox, improves oxygenation and pulmonary gas exchange in the lungs. In doing so, it relieves symptoms such as shortness of breath and fluid build-up – indicators synonymous with coronavirus. The video argues this is a far more effective way of treating coronavirus than a ventilator, which in fact only exacerbates the problem.
While it is proven that acetazolamide is extremely effective in relieving symptoms of high-altitude sickness, it is not proven that the drug would help relieve COVID-19 symptoms. With that said, there are calls within scientific and clinical circles for such research to be undertaken.
US National Library of Medicine, ‘Acetazolamide, Nifedipine and Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors: Rationale for Their Utilization as Adjunctive Countermeasures in the Treatment of Coronavirus Disease 2019’