When the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic began, there were no effective treatments assessed by clinical trials. In this context, in France, the French Public Health Council issued, from 5 March, 2020, several proposed recommendations for the therapeutic management of this new disease. This included the use of combination lopinavir/ritonavir, which is usually indicated as HIV treatment. Thanks to the reporting of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) to the French Regional Pharmacovigilance Centers, several safety signals including hepatobiliary and cardiovascular were quickly identified.
This study aimed to compare the ADRs reported with lopinavir/ritonavir used in its usual indication prior to the pandemic with the ADRs reported with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) indication.
Cases of ADRs were extracted from the French Pharmacovigilance Database. ADRs were compared between the two periods: pre-COVID (1985 to 31 December 2019) and COVID (1 January 2020 to 21 July 2020).
Patients with COVID-19 were found to have a different safety profile, with significantly more damage to the liver (43% of ADRs), heart (10.6%) and kidneys (7.1%). The ADRs reported before the pandemic were mainly gastrointestinal and cutaneous.
This different safety profile may be related to the effect of the virus on the organs, the patient profile (age, medical history…) and the drugs associated with lopinavir/ritonavir. Our study should serve as a reminder that the safety profile of a drug can depend on its use. Spontaneous reporting and pharmacovigilance have a critical role in alerting health professionals to “new” ADRs reported with well-known drugs.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Lopinavir, Ritonavir, COVID-19, Adverse drug reaction, Pharmacovigilance
Abbreviations : ADRs, ANSM, COVID-19, HIV, ICH, LOPI/RITO, MedDRA, MERS-CoV, PT, RPVC, SARS-CoV2, SD, SOC, SOCm, WHO