Ivermectin has been mentioned on social media as a possible treatment for COVID-19, but the drug has not been approved to treat the disease in humans. In response to some people’s usage of the livestock drug, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) urged the public to “stop it.”
“You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it,” the FDA tweeted from its official account on Saturday, alongside a consumer update detailing why the drug can be unsafe for humans. “These animal drugs are often highly concentrated because they are used for large animals like horses and cows, which can weigh a lot more than” a human, the FDA update reads. “Such high doses can be highly toxic in humans.”
The anti-parasitic drug ivermectin has been promoted by some people as a treatment for COVID-19 in the past and the use of the drug seems to be seeing an uptick yet again. For instance, in feed stores in Phoenix, Arizona, the product has been seeing a rise in sales, reported 12News. Patients who overdose with ivermectin can experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, low blood pressure, allergic reactions, dizziness, problems with balance, seizures, coma and even death, according to the FDA.
The agency clarified that the FDA-approved ivermectin tablets meant to treat people with certain conditions caused by parasitic worms as well as topical formulations used for head lice and skin conditions like rosacea are different from the drug used on animals. Ivermectin tablets and topical formulations for humans have “very specific doses” that are significantly smaller than the doses meant for animals.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NBC NEWS
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