According to Fox 11 Los Angeles, a 52-year-old South Florida man (who had been hospitalized with the Coronavirus), credits an anti-malarial drug for saving his life.
Rio Giardinieri told Fox 11 that he experienced a fever for five days, back pain, headache, cough, and tiredness after attending a work-related conference in New York. Giardinieri reports that he was diagnosed with COVID-19 and pneumonia shortly after his conference.
Fox 11‘s story goes on to say that when his doctors were reluctant to see him, Giardinieri drove himself to Joe DiMaggio Hospital in South Florida (near Rio’s home). Doctors at JDH diagnosed him with pneumonia and coronavirus. Rio was put on oxygen and admitted to the ICU, but he says he was still unable to breathe much. After more than a week, Mr. Giardinieri says doctors told him there was really nothing more they could do. He said he was saying his goodbyes to his wife and children.
Rio Giardinieri is quoted as saying…
“I was at the point where I was barely able to speak and breathing was very challenging. I really thought my end was there. I had been through nine days of solid pain and for me, the end was there. So I made some calls to say in my own way goodbye to my friends and family,”
It was at this time that Giardinieri says a friend informed him about an anti-malarial drug known as hydroxychloroquine. Giardinieri reached out to an infectious disease doctor for advice, and after being told all of the reasons why he may not want to try it (there are no trials, there was no testing, it was not something that was approved, etc.) Giardinieri elected to try it anyway. His feeling was that he was at deaths’s door, and decided it was worth the risk.
Giardinieri said he received the medication by IV, during which time he felt like his heart was “beating out of his chest” and still experienced difficulty breathing. Rio was then given Benadryl and other drugs and says that he woke up like, “Nothing ever happened.”
Actor Daniel Dae Kim is another in a recent line of folks touting hydroxychloroquine as being their personal savior from death. Kim took to Instagram saying that his doctor prescribed him a “Cocktail of the antiviral medicine Tamiflu, the antibiotic Azithromycin, a Glycopyrrolate inhaler, and the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine.
Though it was a combination of drugs, the actor stated that hydroxychloroquine was the secret weapon. According to Kim, the drug has been used with great success in Korea, in their fight against the coronavirus.