Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Anti-Parasite Medication Not to Be Used to Prevent COVID-19

Several agencies have released information stating that Ivermectin, a popular anti-parasite medication generally used in animals such as horses, is not to be used to prevent nor treat COVID-19 in humans. (Photo by Helena Lopes from Pexels)

NATIONWIDE — Scientists and health agencies have released information, stating that Ivermectin, an anti-parasite medication which is commonly used in animals such as horses, is not to be used to prevent COVID-19 in humans.

Ivermectin is described by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a “broad spectrum anti-parasitic agent” used to treat several parasitic diseases. It is used as a treatment for scabies, strongyloidiasis, and onchocerciasis (river blindness). This medication is often used to treat animals such as horses and cows.

The form of Ivermectin used in animals tend to be highly concentrated since these animals are far larger than humans. As a result, these high doses are listed to be highly toxic for humans to consume.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released a study in which clinical trials were conducted to see if Ivermectin was a possible treatment or preventative measure for the COVID-19 virus. In these clinical trials, there was extremely low certainty that this medication would be in any way effective due to the low amounts that can be administered to humans.

The FDA notes that medications intended for animals have inactive ingredients that are either in far higher concentrations than humans can consume and are often not tested for human use. Additionally, these ingredients have not been tested as to how they would be absorbed into the human body.

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) notes that the amount of Ivermectin in which a human would need to take in order to possibly be effective would be toxic. VDH also reminds residents that the taking of a drug for unapproved use could be very dangerous.

In states, such as Texas, there has been a surge in calls to the state’s poison control in cases where a person takes Ivermectin in doses meant for horses and cows. These treatments, which are readily available over-the-counter at stores across the country, make the drug readily accessible. A recent report showed that poison control calls in Texas over Ivermectin has increased 552 percent over 2020.

Additionally, VDH would like to dispel the following myths regarding transmission and treatments for COVID-19:

  • Residents should not drink or breathe household cleaners, bleach, or disinfectants to prevent or kill the COVID-19 virus inside of your body nor on your skin. These chemicals can be poisonous.
  • Ultraviolet (UV) lamps or lights cannot be used as a disinfectant. These lights can irritate or harm skin and eyes.
  • Use of mouthwash will not prevent contracting COVID-19. The virus is typically inhaled deep into the throat ad lungs.
  • COVID-19 does not discriminate based on weather. Unlike the flu, COVID-19 is still present in hot and humid weather conditions.
  • 5G networks did not cause the COVID-19 pandemic. The VDH states, “Biological viruses cannot travel through radio waves or mobile networks.”

For more information on myths and facts regarding COVID-19, visit the website for the WHO’s COVID-19 mythbusters.

For more information regarding why Ivermectin is not a treatment for COVID-19, visit the website for the FDA.

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