The NHS has stopped advising coronavirus patients to take ibuprofen amid concerns the anti-inflammatory painkiller could only make things worse.
A source told Mirror Online that NHS staff have been told to stop giving anti-inflammatories to Covid-19 patients suffering from pain or a high temperature and use paracetamol instead.
Health experts had questioned the NHS' advice and cautioned people against taking the over-the-counter drug.
A stepdad from Greater Manchester warned that his four-year-old stepdaughter became seriously ill – shaking, panting and vomiting – after taking ibuprofen for coronavirus symptoms.
The recommendation to take ibuprofen has since been removed from the "stay at home advice" page on the NHS' website.
It now states: "Drink plenty of water and take paracetamol to help with your symptoms."
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On Saturday, French Health Minister Olivier Veran suggested anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen could aggravate the effects of Covid-19 and told people to take paracetamol if they have a fever.
He added: "If you are already taking anti-inflammatory drugs, ask your doctor’s advice.”
Chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance suggested people should not take ibuprofen.
Sir Patrick told MPs: "The ibuprofen example – it may or may not be right, I don't know, but the sensible thing to do would be to say don't take it at the moment, take something else – paracetamol or something."
Covid-19 is so new that there are no studies suggesting a link between ibuprofen and adverse reactions, or that the drug can make the symptoms worse.
Anti-inflammatory drugs can be a risk for patients with infectious illnesses because they can hamper the response of the body’s immune system.
Public Health England had previously said there was not enough information on the effect of ibuprofen on the virus to change its advice
It said previously: “Currently there is no published scientific evidence that ibuprofen increases the risk of catching covid-19 or makes the illness worse. There is also no conclusive evidence that taking ibuprofen is harmful for other respiratory infections.”
Health experts had raised concerns about the use of ibuprofen in recent days.
Ian Jones, professor of virology at the University of Reading, told the Telegraph that ibuprofen could dampen the immune system, slowing recovery, as well as aggravating pneumonia symptoms.
“It is recommended that people use paracetamol to reduce temperature if they are feverish,” he said.
Dr Amir Khan, of the Channel 5 show GPs Behind Closed Doors, had also warned about using ibuprofen.
He said anti-inflammatories "can have a depressive effect on parts of our immune systems".
People with weakened immune system are even more vulnerable to coronavirus.
Dr Khan told Al Jazeera: "When it comes to taking them to help ease the symptoms of the common cold, we do not really have to worry about this slight but important reduction in the strength of our immune systems: We are very unlikely to develop complications from the common cold, let alone die from it.
"But we need our immune system in top working order in order to battle the coronavirus and win."
Mast cells in human bodies release inflammatory chemicals when they come into contact with the virus.
Those chemicals are needed to help to combat the virus, said Dr Khan.
He added: "It is the effectiveness of these chemicals that decides whether a person develops complications from the coronavirus or makes a full recovery."
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