The detective had been on a ventilator for about a week before being transferred to Providence St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, where they offer clinical trials.
While at the center, Detective Chang was also treated using a process called Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO), where blood is removed from the body and infused with oxygen. The blood is then returned to the patient’s body, “acting as an external set of lungs,” allowing his lungs to recover.
Under the leadership of Dr. Steven O’Day, Executive Director of the John Wayne Cancer Clinic at Providence St. John’s Health Center, Detective Chang also entered a clinical trial using an anti-inflammatory called Sarilumab.
“He turned around literally within hours to days and was able to join his family was really an extraordinary event,” Dr. O’Day said.
The drug is a “human monoclonal antibody against the interleukin-6 receptor which could fight off inflammation in the lungs and other organs,” according to The John Wayne Cancer Institute.
Dr. O’Day, who is also the Professor of Medical Oncology, Director of Immuno-Oncology, and Director of Clinical Research at the John Wayne Cancer Institute, tells Inside the Issues they are applying the same treatments they use in fighting cancer including attacking the virus directly and using experimental drugs to reduce inflammation.
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