A critical patient in Hyderabad has been administered an experimental plasma therapy that involves injecting convalescent plasma for immunisation to treat COVID-19.
Dr Aftab Hussain Phull, a focal person at the Liaquat University Hospital (LUH) isolation ward, confirmed the development.
The plasma that is donated by a recovered coronavirus patient to the Diagnostic and Research Laboratory at the Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, given to one of the critical patients fighting with the virus at the isolation ward.
Wondered, how plasma therapy treats Covid? Is it safe?
On April 30th, the Sindh government had allowed three hospitals – the National Institute of Blood Diseases (NIBD) in Karachi, Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital in Karachi, and LUH, a government facility in Hyderabad – to carry out clinical trials for the “experimental use of Covid-19 convalescent plasma for passive immunisation”.
Prior to this, the government had also approved locally made ventilators for treating Corona patients and granted permission for manufacturing producing chloroquine and sanitizers.
The experimental plasma – which is the clear part of blood left when blood cells are removed and only contains antibodies and other proteins – therapy involves collecting blood from a patient who just recovered from Covid-19 and then transfuses the plasma to a critically sick patient.
The transfused plasma and its antibodies provide a form of ‘passive immunity’ to the recipient to fight the infection.
However, the protection offered by passive immunization, is short-lived, lasts a few weeks or months.
The science behind plasma therapy and passive immunization has been widely applied for different infectious diseases including measles, mumps, and polio.