Fluoxetine May Improve Survival of Patients with COVID-19 Pneumonia: A Retrospective Case-Control Study

23 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2021 Last revised: 22 Sep 2021

See all articles by Zsófi Németh

Zsófi Németh

4th Department of Internal Medicine, Uzsoki Street Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University

Anna Szűcs

Department of Behavioral Sciences, Semmelweis University

József VITRAI

Jounal of Health Promotion

Dóra Juhász

4th Department of Internal Medicine, Uzsoki Street Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University

János Pál Németh

Department of Management, Budapest Business School

András Holló

National Institute for Medical Rehabilitation

Date Written: July 30, 2021

Abstract

Objective: We undertook this study to determine the effect of fluoxetine use on the survival of hospitalised coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pneumonia patients.

Methods: This retrospective case–control chart review study used data extracted from the medical records of adults who were hospitalised with moderate or severe COVID-19 pneumonia at the Uzsoki Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary, between 17 March and 22 April 2021, and received anti-COVID-19 therapy including favipiravir, remdesivir, and baricitinib or their combination, in addition to standard medical treatment; 110 patients received 20 mg fluoxetine orally once daily as adjuvant medication. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate the association between fluoxetine use and mortality.

Results: Of the 269 participants, 205 (76.2%) survived and 64 (23.8%) died between days 2 and 28 after hospitalisation. Fluoxetine use was associated to a decrease of mortality risk (OR [95% CI] 0.242 [0.111–0.525], p<0.0001) compared to the non-fluoxetine group. Greater age, higher lactate dehydrogenase concentration, and baricitinib use (OR [95% CI] 1.1 [1.065–1.137], p<0.001; 1.001 [1.000–1.002], p=0.042; 3.62 [1.146–11.451], p=0.028, respectively) were significantly associated with higher mortality.

Conclusion: Provisional to confirmation in randomised controlled studies, fluoxetine may be a potent treatment for COVID-19 pneumonia.

Note: Funding: None to declare

Declaration of Interests: None to declare

Ethics Approval Statement: Uzsoki Street Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University in Budapest ethics committee approved our study (No 19-IK/2021)

Keywords: fluoxetine, COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, pneumonia, survival, mortality

JEL Classification: I10

Suggested Citation

Németh, Zsófi and Szűcs, Anna and VITRAI, József and Juhász, Dóra and Németh, János Pál and Holló, András, Fluoxetine May Improve Survival of Patients with COVID-19 Pneumonia: A Retrospective Case-Control Study (July 30, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3896539 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3896539

Zsófi Németh

4th Department of Internal Medicine, Uzsoki Street Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University ( email )

Anna Szűcs

Department of Behavioral Sciences, Semmelweis University ( email )

József VITRAI

Jounal of Health Promotion ( email )

Hungary

HOME PAGE: http://https://ojs.mtak.hu/index.php/egfejl

Dóra Juhász

4th Department of Internal Medicine, Uzsoki Street Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University ( email )

János Pál Németh

Department of Management, Budapest Business School ( email )

András Holló (Contact Author)

National Institute for Medical Rehabilitation ( email )

Budapest
Hungary

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