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Why Methodology is Important: Coffee as a Candidate for Treatment of COVID-19.

Y Belaroussi et al, 2020.
Journal of Clinical Medicine, Volume 9 (11).
November 24, 2020



During this pandemic situation, some studies have led to hasty conclusions about Corona Virus Disease-19 (COVID-19) treatment, due to a lack of methodology. This pedagogic study aimed to highlight potential biases in research on COVID-19 treatment.


We evaluate the effect of coffee’s active part, 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine (TMX) on patients with COVID-19. A cohort of 93 patients, with a diagnosis of COVID-19 is analyzed.


TMX group and control group included, respectively, 26 and 67 patients. In the TMX group, patients had a median length of stay in hospital of 5.5 days shorter than in the control group (9.5 vs. 15 days, p < 0.05). Patients in the control group were more severe than patients in the TMX group with a significantly higher National Early Warning Score 2 (NEWS-2 score) (8 vs. 6, p = 0.002).


Multiple biases prevents us from concluding to an effect of coffee on COVID-19. Despite an important social pressure during this crisis, methodology and conscientiousness are the best way to avoid hasty conclusions that can be deleterious for patients.

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