For some, the early days of the pandemic might seem long gone. For others, many of whom are contracting COVID-19 for the first time, quarantine and anxiety may be front of mind.
Paxlovid has emerged as a new antiviral treatment for those diagnosed with COVID-19. If you haven’t heard of Paxlovid — or are just looking to refresh your knowledge — read on below for more information.
Paxlovid is an oral antiviral pill manufactured by Pfizer that can be taken at home to help mitigate the symptoms and lasting impact of the coronavirus. Paxlovid can be taken by people who have recently tested positive for COVID-19, have had mild to moderate symptoms for no more than 5 days and are not hospitalized. Only available through a prescription, the three-pill regimen contains two different drugs: nirmatrelvir, used for disrupting the coronavirus’s ability to replicate; and ritonavir, which slows down how quickly the body processes nirmatelvir. Patients taking Paxlovid will use a total of 30 pills: three pills twice a day for five days.
An extremely effective treatment, Paxlovid has been found to be close to 90% effective in early studies in preventing severe COVID-19. According to our friends at Healthline, people with COVID-19 who are prescribed Paxlovid are 5 times less likely to be hospitalized and 10 times less likely to die from the disease than people who aren’t prescribed Paxlovid. The antiviral can also help reduce the risk of serious illness caused by COVID-19 in people who have mild symptoms. While very effective, Paxlovid is prescribed within five days of symptoms to be the most effective. Many people are speaking with their doctors to consider if they should use Paxlovid, including President Biden, who was recently prescribed the medication during his COVID-19 infection.
While side effects include indigestion, diarrhea, and muscle aches, the main complaint consumers have is “Paxlovid mouth.” Described as “metallic, bitter grapefruit,” this is referred to as dysgeusia, an altered sense of taste. Patients have reported this taste sensation lasting for the Paxlovid treatment cycle, and reports say the taste can be combated by spearmint and peppermint lozenges, lots of water, and cinnamon candy — specifically the gummy variety.
We hope this helps shed some light on this new treatment! Of course, it’s always important to keep your health a priority. You can stay up-to-date on your COVID-19 status with On/Go, our rapid COVID-19 antigen self-test kits have been rated #1 by the ECRI! Shop On/Go and On/Go One at our website.