Paxlovid! If you are over 50 or have another risk factor, MAKE A PLAN today for when you test positive for COVID-19.
Paxlovid is an oral antiviral pill that stops the virus that causes COVID-19 from making copies of itself in your body.
Don’t be afraid of “rebound.” Rebound of COVID symptoms can happen whether you take Paxlovid or not.
Paxlovid is highly effective at what matters—keeping you out of the hospital and ALIVE. Paxlovid helps for both unvaccinated AND vaccinated people.
Paxlovid may also prevent Long Covid.
We know that older and higher-risk people are anxious because they can’t top up their COVID protection with another booster right now. If you should get infected, Paxlovid is a great way to drive your risks as low as possible.
Exciting new data showed that in addition to protection from hospitalization and death, Paxlovid also reduces the risk of bad stuff happening AFTER your immediate COVID infection (called post-acute sequelae, including Long Covid).
People who took Paxlovid within 5 days of a positive test had a significantly lower risk of new symptoms in the next 180 days including: heart problems (dysrhythmia and heart disease), clotting and other blood disorders (pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis), fatigue and malaise, acute kidney disease, muscle pain, neurologic symptoms (cognitive impairment and dysautonomia), and shortness of breath. This is really good news!
*Caveats: This was an observational study of almost 300,000 patients in the US VA system infected with COVID. Based on medical records, those who took Paxlovid were compared to similar people (based on age, risk factors, etc), who did not take Paxlovid. This research design is not as good as the gold standard randomized control trial (RCT), but it’s still an important way for us to build knowledge about these new treatments in the real world.
People who are at high risk for severe COVID-19 should discuss Paxlovid with their clinician. Age is the strongest risk factor for serious COVID-19 outcomes. If you are over 50, you are at higher risk.
Over *1500* Americans continue to die from COVID-19 EACH WEEK, and Paxlovid could prevent many of these. Call early in the course of illness and DON’T WAIT.
While most people can safely take Paxlovid, there are some medication contra-indications that your clinician and pharmacist will check. People with severe liver or kindey disease shouldn’t take it. In this case talk to your clinician about an alternative treatment, Remdesivir.
The deets: Paxlovid is actually two different types of pills (both equally challenging to say ): nirmatrelvir tablets and ritonavir tablets. You take two of the nirmatrelvir tablets and one ritonavir tablet all together twice a day.
The best idea is to speak to your primary care provider to make a plan find out the steps should you test positive. You can also check the Test to Treat locator here.
Make a plan to start taking Paxlovid within the first 5 days of symptoms to prevent your risk of severe disease, death, and Long Covid. The sooner the better, because you want to stop the virus from making copies of itself and doing damage.
Stay safe, stay well.
Those Nerdy Girls