An Israeli Scientist has stated that the results of a double-blind study he recently conducted indicate that a drug commonly used to treat parasite infections could be helpful in treating COVID-19 cases, despite much of the medical community steadfastly maintaining otherwise.
Ivermectin, which among other things is used to treat head lice, scabies, and even heartworms in horses, is being touted by Professor Eli Schwartz, founder of the Center for Travel Medicine and Tropical Disease at Sheba, as an effective means to reduce the length of COVID-19 infections. It would be a cheap treatment option for the virus as well, with experts putting the cost of its use at approximately one dollar per day.
Schwartz noted that his study involved 89 volunteers over the age of 18, all of whom had tested positive for COVID-19; half were administered ivermectin, and the other half received a placebo. The volunteers were tested regularly to gauge their current viral load, and by the sixth day of treatment Schwartz claimed that 72 percent of those taking ivermectin tested negative for COVID-19. In contrast, only 50 of those taking the placebo tested negative.
“Our study shows first and foremost that ivermectin has antiviral activity,” Schwartz said. “It also shows that there is almost a 100 percent chance that a person will be noninfectious in four to six days, which could lead to shortening isolation time for these people. This could have a huge economic and social impact.”
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However, much of the worldwide medical community has not only dismissed the use of ivermectin to treat COVID-19 as ineffective, but many have labeled its improper use as being dangerous.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a health advisory on ivermectin, stating that there is “insufficient data” to recommend the drug for COVID prevention and treatment.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also advised the public that it has not approved ivermectin for use in treating or preventing COVID-19 in humans, saying that it does not possess anti-viral properties – in contrast to what Professor Schwartz claimed in his study – and can be harmful if taken in large doses.
“Ivermectin tablets are approved at very specific doses for some parasitic worms, and there are topical (on the skin) formulations for head lice and skin conditions like rosacea,” the FDA said. “Ivermectin is not an anti-viral (a drug for treating viruses).
The FDA also noted that there is a rise in the number of people ingesting versions of ivermectin that are intended for animal use only, which can have seriously harmful effects on the human body, saying “Never use medications intended for animals on yourself. Ivermectin preparations for animals are very different from those approved for humans.”
Editors Note: This story contains opinions by experts in their field accompanied by video statements for transparency and responsibility in reporting. We must remind the reader that nothing should supersede the advice received from one’s own medical physician based on their specific circumstances.