Health experts share about effectiveness of using monoclonal antibodies to treat COVID-19

Published: Aug. 31, 2021 at 7:36 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Many people are turning to monoclonal antibody treatments to treat COVID-19.

Monoclonal antibodies are proteins made in a lab to help fight off infection and reduce the viral load in a person’s body.

Health experts say this treatment can prevent death and hospitalization and say the sooner you get it the more effective it is.

“If you do develop symptoms that seem like a COVID infection, you get tested for the COVID virus and it comes back positive we encourage them to call us immediately or be seen immediately to be assessed for monoclonal antibody infusion, we try to discourage waiting,” said Dr. Mark Sigler, Texas Tech Physicians pulmonologist and critical care physician.

BSA Physician Assistant, Stephen Wilson says the recent emergency use authorization, has broadened the scope for those who are eligible to receive this treatment, he says mostly everyone who has COVID-19 can get this treatment.

He says anyone over the age of 12 that has tested positive for COVID-19 and are at high risk are eligible for treatment.

High risks can include things such as, chronic illnesses, anyone over the age of 65 or if you are overweight with a body mass index greater than 25.

Health experts say they have delivered several thousands of these treatments and have found them to be effective, with people feeling better within just a couple of days.

“If we can get it to people before they’re really sick then it’s a win almost every time, so it’s a really good medication and the main side effect that we’ve seen is supposed to be allergic reaction, I believe we’ve seen two so far here and they both have been very minor, benadryl only to get you going,” said Wilson.

Dr. Sigler said this treatment can help prevent severe affects of COVID-19.

“What it’s most effective at doing is preventing either death, which is clearly important with the Corona-virus, but it also prevents hospitalizations, so it is effective at doing that, but it is most effective when you receive it in the first few days of your illness and the longer you wait before receiving it usually the less effective it is,” said Dr. Sigler.

He said treatments are available at both BSA and Northwest Texas Healthcare System and at BSA’s Urgent Care Center.

He said he has not seen a shortage of supply and believes Amarillo has enough supply.

Wilson mentions he hopes to see more places start offering these treatments as he believes there is a great need for it due to its effectiveness.

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