Jesse Pelletier

Ophthalmologist, Jesse Pelletier says it is not advisable to use Hydrogen Peroxide for the treatment of Sars-Cov-2 or Covid-19.

Speaking on Newsfile, Saturday, he said that Hydrogen Peroxide can be toxic to the cells in the nose, mouth and gums.

“When we are talking about treating Covid-19, we also have to consider the nose and mouth, because the nose is the initial dominant side of infection in all cases.”

“And if you are to use Hydrogen Peroxide in the nose, it has also been shown to reduce significantly something called mucociliary clearance.”

Mucociliary clearance, he explained, moves debris out of the mouth to the nasopharynx, where it can be swallowed and deactivated.

“If you decrease or depress this function, then whatever enters your nose has more contact time with epithelial cells, (a barrier between the inside and outside of a person’s body that protects it from viruses), and if that is Sars-Cov-2 you are more likely to have an established infection.”

Dr Pelletier also added that he and his team during a research, tested three things including Halodine (formulation of Povidone-iodine (PVP-I), a broad-spectrum antiseptic with no known resistance), Hydrogen Peroxide, and Ethanol against the Covid-19 virus.

The team, he said, found that Hydrogen Peroxide was the least effective in killing the virus.

“We found that the Povidone-iodine (PVP-I) formulation killed the actual virus that causes Covid-19. It killed 99.9% of it in 15 seconds or less. The ethanol was bout 30 seconds and the Hydrogen Peroxide had very little evidence of functioning at all.”

Dr. Pelletier told the host of Newsfile, Samson Lardy Anyenini that in finding solutions, people have to be careful when using Hydrogen Peroxide to treat the virus.

Meanwhile, the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) on January 27 said there was a shortage of hydrogen peroxide in several pharmaceutical facilities across the country.

The shortage followed panic buying by persons who hope to protect themselves from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The high demand for hydrogen peroxide stemmed from reports that indicate that the chemical compound offers some protection and also aids in the treatment of the coronavirus disease.

A retired professor of the University of Ghana Medical School, College of Health Sciences, says research conducted by a team of medical scientists and doctors had proven the efficacy of Hydrogen Peroxide on Covid-19 virus.  

According to Emeritus Prof Andrews Seth Ayettey, the solution is safe to use in a low concentration and could be applied to reduce viral load in the oral and nasal cavities of Covid-19 patients and to inactivate the viruses they shed.

But, in a press release, the Ghana Medical Association discouraged people from buying Hydrogen Peroxide.

The association stated that neither the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Ministry of Health (MOH), the World Health Organisation (WHO) nor any reputable international drug or health regulatory body has approved, authorized, or recommended the use of Hydrogen Peroxide for the prevention or treatment of Covid-19.

GMA said that although some published studies in and outside Ghana suggest Hydrogen Peroxide “may be used” for the prevention of Covid-19, there has been no sufficient proof that it works.

“The general public is advised to handle the product as any other medical product and that the misuse of same could lead to serious physical and undesirable medical consequences,” a portion of the statement read.