Background: Convalescent plasma has been used for a long time for the treatment of various infectious diseases. The principle is to collect antibody-containing plasma from recovered patients and to transfuse the plasma to infectious patients thereby modifying their immune system. This approach was also used in the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic when no specific drugs were available for the treatment of the disease.
Design and methods: This short narrative review reports on relevant studies of collection and transfusion of Covid-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) from 2020 until August 2022. Clinical patients' outcome parameters such as need for ventilation, length of hospital stay and mortality were analysed.
Results: Heterogenous patient groups were studied resulting in difficult comparability of the studies. High titer of transfused neutralizing antibodies, early onset of CCP treatment and moderate disease activity were identified as key parameters for effective treatment. Special subgroups of patients were identified to benefit from CCP treatment. No relevant side effects were observed during and after collection and transfusion of CCP.
Conclusions: Transfusion of CCP plasma is an option for the treatment of special subgroups of patients suffering from SARS-CoV-2 infection. CCP can be easily used in low-to-middle income countries where no specific drugs are available for treatment of the disease. Further clinical trials are necessary to define the role of CCP in the treatment of SARS-CoV-2 disease.
Keywords: Adverse events; Clinical outcome; Convalescent plasma; Plasmapheresis.
Copyright © 2023. Published by Elsevier Ltd.