Thailand’s Department of Thai Traditional and Alternative Medicine has defended its study on the use of Andrographis paniculata, or green chiretta, in the treatment of COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms.
Department Director-General Dr. Amporn Benjaponpitak said the error contained in the study, titled “Efficacy and safety of ‘Andrographis paniculata’ extract in patients with mild COVID-19: A randomized controlled trial”, which was published in the online pre-print journal medRxiv, does not affect the study’s conclusion.
She said the department is confident of the accuracy of the study, indicating that green chiretta can prevent lung infections caused by COVID-19 from worsening, and a statistical miscalculation, which prompted the authors to halt its publication, has nothing to do with the government’s policy to use green chiretta to treat those with mild symptoms.
According to Dr. Amporn, the error relates to the study’s P-value, which measures the likelihood of the study’s hypothesis being valid. The authors miscalculated the study’s P-value to be 0.03, while the figure should have been 0.112. As such, the research team decided to withdraw the study and resubmit it for publication once the errors are corrected. (NNT)