Lopinavir-ritonavir and hydroxychloroquine for critically ill patients with COVID-19: REMAP-CAP randomized control trial

The REMAP-CAP Investigators, Yaseen M Arabi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


Purpose: To study the efficacy of lopinavir-ritonavir and hydroxychloroquine in critically ill patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Methods: Critically ill adults with COVID-19 were randomized to receive lopinavir-ritonavir, hydroxychloroquine, combination therapy of lopinavir-ritonavir, and hydroxychloroquine or no antiviral therapy (control). The primary endpoint was an ordinal scale of organ-support free days. Analyses used a Bayesian cumulative logistic model and expressed treatment effects as an adjusted odds ratio (OR) where an OR >1 is favorable. Results: We randomized 694 patients to receive lopinavir-ritonavir (n=255), hydroxychloroquine (n=50), combination therapy (n=27) or control (n=362). The median (IQR) organ support-free days among patients in lopinavir-ritonavir, hydroxychloroquine, and combination therapy groups was 4 (–1 to 15), 0 (–1 to 9) and –1 (–1 to 7), respectively, compared to 6 (–1 to 16) in the control group with in-hospital mortality of 88/249 (35%), 17/49 (35%), 13/26 (50%), respectively, compared to 106/353 (30%) in the control group. The three interventions decreased organ support-free days compared to control (OR [95% credible interval]: 0.73 [0.55, 0.99], 0.57 [0.35, 0.83] 0.41 [0.24, 0.72]), yielding posterior probabilities that reached the threshold futility (≥99.0%), and high probabilities of harm (98.0%, 99.9% and >99.9%, respectively). The three interventions reduced hospital survival compared with control (OR [95% CrI]: 0.65 [0.45, 0.95], 0.56 [0.30, 0.89], and 0.36 [0.17, 0.73]), yielding high probabilities of harm (98.5% and 99.4% and 99.8%, respectively). Conclusion: Among critically ill patients with COVID-19, lopinavir-ritonavir, hydroxychloroquine, or combination therapy worsened outcomes compared to no antiviral therapy. Trial registration Clinicaltrials.gov identifier: NCT02735707
Original languageEnglish
JournalIntensive Care Medicine
Early online date12 Jul 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Jul 2021

Structured keywords

  • Covid19


  • Adaptive platform trial
  • intensive care
  • pneumonia
  • pandemic
  • COVID-19
  • lopinavir-ritonavir
  • hydroxychloroquine


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