People all over the world have been warned to stop taking Ibuprofen for symptoms associated with coronavirus.
The warning was given by the World Health Organization, WHO after French health officials warned that anti-inflammatory drugs could worsen effects of the virus.
Commenting on a recent study in The Lancet medical journal, French Health Minister Olivier Veran said it was hypothesised that an enzyme boosted by anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen could facilitate and worsen COVID-19 infections.
Veran stressed that coronavirus cases should take paracetamol instead, while those already being treated with anti-inflammatory drugs should ask advice from their doctor.
When asked about the study, WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier told reporters in Geneva the UN health agency’s experts were “looking into this to give further guidance.”
“In the meantime, we recommend using rather paracetamol, and do not use ibuprofen as a self-medication. That’s important.
“If ibuprofen had been prescribed by the healthcare professionals, then, of course, that’s up to them.”
Both paracetamol and ibuprofen can bring a temperature down and help with flu-like symptoms. But ibuprofen and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are not suitable for everyone and can cause side-effects – especially for people with asthma, heart and circulatory problems.