In the absence of vaccines to fight against COVID-19, which has killed a huge number of people globally, Plasma therapy has been considered as the novel idea to overcome this deadly pandemic. India, along with other countries, is looking at this therapy to treat the critical novel coronavirus patients.
Recovered patients can donate plasma
The immune system of the recovered patients from COVID-19 have antibodies in the plasma of the blood to fight the invading virus. Plasma constitutes approximately 55 per cent of our blood. In plasma therapy, the blood from the recovered patient is taken to extract plasma. Plasma is the liquid portion of the blood which contains antibodies. Only the plasma is injected into the ailing patients to create passive immunity to fight against coronavirus.
One donor’s plasma to treat two patients
The novel coronavirus patient is given 200 millilitres of plasma. The important point is that two patients can be treated with the donation of one person’s plasma (who is fully cured of novel coronavirus). If no positive result comes out after the first time infusion of 200 millilitres of plasma, then the same amount of plasma is transfused again to the infected patients.
Head of Transfusion Medicine, King George Medical University (KGMU), Tulika Chandra said, “The work on administering medical treatment to COVID-19 patients through plasma therapy began on Saturday. In this context, the blood sample of Dr Tauseef Khan, a resident doctor who had recovered from COVID-19, was taken for testing. In the test, the condition of the antibodies was found quite good,” she said.
Plasma donation an easy process
Plasma donation is nothing more than a blood donation. There is a device that separates the plasma from blood, and the process is not lengthy, it would take about an hour. But only fully recovered patients of COVID-19 can donate their plasma. Plasma donors should be physically fit. Therefore, many COVID-19 survivors have some health problems, so they can’t be donors. It is difficult to find an appropriate donor of plasma.
Chances of success high
Experts believe that the chances of the success of plasma therapy are high. This therapy is gradually getting popularity across the country in the treatment of novel coronavirus patients.
ICMR gives approval
Various states in the country are using plasma therapy in the treatment of severe novel coronavirus patients. The treatment has shown some positive results in a few patients. The Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) has also given its approval.
UP CM urges to go for plasma therapy
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had asked the state’s medical authorities on April 21 to aggressively push for plasma therapy for the treatment of novel coronavirus patients after seeing its effectiveness.
Several states give nod
States like Kerala, Gujarat, and Punjab have started using plasma therapy for the treatment of COVID-19 patients. The Delhi government has announced on April 24 that it will encourage plasma therapy as it is showing positive results.
A patient recovers through plasma therapy
The Delhi government got encouragement after the improvement in the condition of a 49-year-old man who got plasma therapy at Max Hospital at Saket. Earlier, the patient was on a ventilator.
Plasma therapy is not a novel idea earlier in 2014; this therapy was used in the Ebola virus disease. While in the treatment of the SARS epidemic in 2003, experts took the help of plasma therapy for the treatment of SARS patients. It seems in the condition of epidemic and pandemic outbreak plasma therapy is a blessing for severe patients.