Low Dose Radiation Therapy for COVID-19 Pneumonia – An Imminent Panacea for Sickest of the Sick Patients


Authors : Peoli Mukutawat; Kunwar Prativyom; Anita Mukutawat

Volume/Issue : Volume 5 - 2020, Issue 7 - July

Google Scholar : http://bitly.ws/9nMw

Scribd : https://bit.ly/33uKGUq

Coronavirus disease is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered novel coronavirus first reported in 2019. COVID-19 virus has resulted in an ongoing pandemic. The virus is primarily transmitted amongst individuals via airborne droplets produced by coughing, sneezing, and talking. The infected individual may remain asymptomatic, most of them may have mild symptoms but some may progress to develop acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Because of the high rate of transmission of the virus, the number of COVID-19 pneumonia patients are increasing day by day. As of now, there is no vaccine to prevent and no antiviral drug to treat human coronavirus infection. Low dose of radiation therapy (<100 cGy), unlike high dose of radiation, has anti-inflammatory effects which occur due to decrease in pro-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-6. It is observed that low doses of kilovoltage X-rays reduce fatality due to pneumonia by almost 20%. But some studies have also reported increased uptake, activation, transcription and spread of some viruses after radiation therapy. To conclude, low dose radiation therapy (<100 cGy) help to alleviate life-threatening symptoms of COVID-19 pneumonia. But more research is required in larger cohort of patients to validate the use of radiation therapy for COVID-19 pneumonia. Until then, the use of radiation therapy for COVID-19 pneumonia shall be done very carefully. Radiation therapy shall only be used as a part of clinical trial or as a last resort in sickest of the sick patients

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