Dr. Saag says steroid treatment for COVID-19 helpful

Steroid used on Trump, being used at UAB

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - It’s called Dexamethasone and you’ve probably heard that term recently because it was administered to the president, and credited with reducing his symptoms.

The steroid was administered to President Trump as he sought treatment to cope with the symptoms of COVID-19. It’s become a treatment option for the virus because of the dramatic inflammation risk and the havoc it wreaks on the immune system. The steroid allows the immune system to “cool off,” according to Dr. Michael Saag.

He says it’s used over a week and then gets tapered off, and does have some side effects, like raising blood sugar or causing euphoria, but he says most patients tolerate it well.

“It works, it lowers the transition to ICU, prevents people from doing that, shortens hospital stays, and improves mortality benefits. It’s a really good drug that’s been around a long time and it’s not all that expensive,” said Saag.

It is typically only used in patients with more severe cases of COVID-19.

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