Plasma Therapy, you must be aware of this term, it gained much popularity during this COVID-19 pandemic, although it exists from long-term. It is an old method of treating infected person, and currently the most recommended practice for fighting the infectious COVID-19 disease, by most of the medical practitioners.
Let us know how this is practiced and how effective has this medical procedure been on COVID patients.
What is Plasma Therapy?
Plasma Therapy is an old medical procedure used to treat patients. In this procedure the blood of a recovered patient is taken an injected in an infected person, to create antibodies in them that helps fight against the infectious disease.
In medical terms this procedure is also known convalescent plasma therapy, that is being currently used to treat COVID infected patients. This treatment uses antibodies found in the blood taken from a recovered Covid-19 patient. It is then used to treat those with severe SARS-CoV-2 infection to aid recovery.
How Much Effective This Therapy Is In Treating COVID Patients?
Currently, convalescent plasma therapy has proved itself much effective in treating COVID patients. It has shown positive results on a large scale in Delhi and Mumbai where COVID cases are spiking high. It has also proven to improve the ability of a person to recover from the disease. However, this procedure has proved itself effective only in certain type of patients, it efficacy on other type of patients is still under research.
How This Therapy Works?
As stated above, this therapy uses antibodies from patients who have completely recovered from COVID-19 infection, which is then injected in the infected person. Here is how this procedure will fight coronavirus in your body.
- Blood is taken from a completely recovered patient from COVID, the plasma component of that blood is separated, that contains the antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 virus. This plasma is injected into an infected person’s body that will fight the virus and neutralize it from spreading.
- Once the patient has recovered, he/she will be asked to donate their blood so that their antibodies will be used to treat other infected patients.
- The blood sample will be checked for any existing harmful diseases such as Hepatitis B & C including HIV.
- The recovered blood will be taken into study and a researcher will extract plasma from the blood that can be injected into an infected person.
How To Prepare For This Treatment?
Convalescent plasma therapy is conducted in an infected patients body only after the doctor recommends. The doctor decides plasma therapy for a patient based on his blood type. Here is details that how you should prepare for this treatment, and what to do once you recover from COVID with the help of this treatment.
Your healthcare professional will assess your health before you undergo the treatment. This procedure involves a health care member who will insert an intravenous/ IV tube into a vein on your arms.
The plasma separated from the blood of a recovered patient is attached to the IV tube inserted in your veins and supplied to you in drips. The whole process takes 2 hours to complete.
After you recover from COVID-19, you are discharged from the hospital, although you have to make frequent visit to hospitals to get yourself monitored by your healthcare specialist.
Risk Included In Plasma Therapy
Plasma therapy has proved itself as a boon for many patients suffering from COVID-19, however this procedure does consist some kind of risk, and is only to be practiced under proper medical supervision. Here are some potential risks one must be aware of:
- This procedure includes transfer of a recovered person blood to an infected person’s body, that means there is high risk of transmission of prevalent virus. Thus, it is must for a doctor to assess the health of the recovered person before opting to conduct blood transfusion.
- Every human body reacts in different ways to a treatment or medication. This treatment cannot be useful for some patients as it can result in the contraction of an infection.
Interesting History Of Plasma Therapy
- In 1918, Plasma Therapy was used to treat influenza virus pandemic, popularly known as the Spanish flu.
- In 2009, it was used to treat the H1N1 virus that cause the disease popular as Swine Flu.
- In 2014, this therapy was recommended by WHO (World Health Organization) to treat Ebola patients.
- In 2015, this therapy was used to treat the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) which is a type of coronavirus.