Colchicine, COVID-19 and hematological parameters: A meta-analysis

J Clin Lab Anal. 2021 Dec;35(12):e24057. doi: 10.1002/jcla.24057. Epub 2021 Oct 28.


Introduction: Colchicine has the potential in reducing patient morbidity and mortality in COVID-19 infection owing to its anti-inflammatory properties. This study aims to determine the efficacy of colchicine in optimizing inflammatory hematological biomarker levels among COVID-19 patients.

Methods: In accordance to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) 2020 statement guidelines, a systematic search was conducted using the following keywords: Colchicine, covid*, SARS-CoV-2, anti-inflammatory, trials, clinical, hematological, laboratory. Databases were searched from December 2019 until August 26, 2021: MEDLINE/PubMed, Web of Science, Cochrane, Scopus, and EMBASE. Other sources were located through ClinicalTrials.Gov, manually searching SAGE, Science Direct, Elsevier, and Google Scholar. The meta-analysis was conducted using Review Manager 5.4.

Results: In total, six studies were included, of which four reported c-reactive protein (CRP) standardized mean reductions in the colchicine group (N = 165) as opposed to the control (N = 252; SMD = -0.49, p < 0.001). On noting lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) values post treatment, the colchicine group (N = 204) showed significant reductions at the end of treatment compared to control (N = 290; SMD = -0.85, p < 0.001). Finally, the D-dimer values in colchicine groups (N = 129) compared to control (N = 216) also documented a negative effect size (SMD = -0.9, p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Colchicine has efficacy in reducing inflammatory biomarkers observed in moderate-to-severe COVID-19 patients. It may be worthwhile to consider monitoring the clinical and laboratory parameters of patients in further trials to consider colchicine as a strong candidate for an adjunct to COVID-19 treatment.

Keywords: COVID-19; CRP; D-dimer; LDH; colchicine.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use
  • Biomarkers / blood*
  • C-Reactive Protein / analysis
  • COVID-19 / blood
  • COVID-19 / mortality
  • COVID-19 Drug Treatment*
  • Colchicine / therapeutic use*
  • Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products / analysis
  • Humans
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / blood


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Biomarkers
  • Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products
  • fibrin fragment D
  • C-Reactive Protein
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase
  • Colchicine