Effectiveness of unani regimen in protecting high risk population from COVID -19: A pilot study
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has spread globally. COVID-19 presents varied clinical features. The present study focuses on number of patients turning COVID-19 positive, change in Immune Status Questionnaire (ISQ) and WHO quality of life- Bref (WHO Qol – BREF) scales after taking intervention. This open labelled, double arm, controlled, interventional, clinical trial was conducted on high-risk individuals i.e., those residing with a COVID-19 positive member in the identified quarantine area. This twin armed study was conducted on asymptomatic individuals exposed to COVID -19. The test group were prescribed Unani poly-herbal decoction together with Unani formulations Khamira Marwareed and Tiryaq e Arba whereas the control group was not on any intervention. The duration of intervention was 20 days; follow ups were planned on day 10 and day 20. Of the 81 participants enrolled, none of the patients turned COVID-19 positive. However, 13.58% (n=11) developed COVID like symptoms and 70 patients completed the study. The mean age of the participants was 41.42±16.9 years; however, majority of the participants were 18-28 years male with Damvi (Sanguine) temperament. The quality of life of the intervention group improved significantly however, the immune status in both the groups increased with P <0.001. The Unani prophylactic regimen provides a 62% (relative risk reduction) protection against COVID -19. This pilot study paves for a study on a larger population. No adverse effects were observed during the study. Absence of biochemical investigations were limitations to the study.
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