Background: Haloperidol, a widely used antipsychotic, has been suggested as potential effective treatment for Covid-19 on the grounds of its in-vitro antiviral effects against SARS-CoV-2. Methods: We examined the association between haloperidol use and respiratory failure at AP-HP Greater Paris University hospitals. Data were obtained regarding all adult patients hospitalized with Covid-19 since the beginning of the epidemic. Study baseline was defined as the date of hospital admission. The primary endpoint was a composite of intubation or death and the secondary endpoint was discharge home among survivors in time-to-event analyses. We compared outcomes between patients who were exposed to haloperidol and those who were not, using a multivariable Cox regression model with inverse probability weighting according to the propensity score. Results: Of the 13,279 hospitalized adult patients with positive Covid-19 RT-PCR test, 667 patients (5.0%) were excluded because of missing data. Of the remaining 12,612 patients, 104 (0.8%) were exposed to haloperidol. Over a mean follow-up of 20.8 days, the primary endpoint of respiratory failure respectively occurred in 27 patients (26.0%) exposed to haloperidol and 1,700 patients (13.6%) who were not. Among survivors, the secondary endpoint of discharge home occurred in 26 patients (32.1%) who received haloperidol and 6,110 patients (55.3%) who did not. In the main analysis, there were no significant associations between haloperidol use and the primary (HR, 1.09; 95% CI, 0.60 to 1.97, p=0.772) and secondary (HR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.50 to 1.53, p=0.643) endpoints. Results were similar in multiple sensitivity analyses. Conclusion: In this observational study involving patients with Covid-19 who had been admitted to the hospital, haloperidol use was not associated with risk of intubation or death, or with time to hospital discharge home. These results suggest that haloperidol is unlikely to have a clinical efficacy for Covid-19.
medrxiv Subject Collection: Infectious Diseases