Remdesivir for COVID is now available for those with liver disease.

Liver Disease
Liver Disease

Remdesivir, an antiviral medication, has been given FDA approval to treat COVID-19 in patients with all stages of liver disease, according to news released on Thursday by pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences Inc.

The change is significant because, in the past, certain persons with liver illness had few alternatives for treating severe COVID-19 cases. Remdesivir, also known by the brand name Veklury, is described in a news release by Gilead as “the first and only approved antiviral COVID-19 treatment that can be used across all stages of liver disease.”

Results of a Phase 1 research using the amount currently prescribed for individuals without liver issues revealed no fresh safety issues, according to the pharmaceutical company.

According to the National Institutes of Health, the antiviral is often given by injection or intravenously for three days to nonhospitalized individuals with mild to moderate COVID-19 infections who are at high risk of the infection developing into a serious condition. The infusion is given to COVID patients who are already in the hospital for five days. Antivirals function by preventing the virus from replicating.

Remdesivir was the first antiviral drug FDA-approved to treat COVID-19 in October 2020. Remdesivir was given FDA approval earlier this year to be used in patients with kidney issues, including those who are undergoing dialysis.