FDA warns against using animal ivermectin to treat or prevent COVID-19

The agency cautions that inappropriate use of the anthelmintic medication can have deadly side effects.
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The Food and Drug Administration  (FDA) recently issued a warning about using ivermectin products intended for animals to treat or prevent COVID-19. 

According to an FDA Consumer Update released March 5, "There seems to be a growing interest in a drug called ivermectin to treat humans with COVID-19. Ivermectin is often used in the U.S. to treat or prevent parasites in animals. The FDA has received multiple reports of patients who have required medical support and have been hospitalized after self-medicating with ivermectin intended for horses."

The statement also included the following information: 

Here’s What You Need to Know about Ivermectin

  • FDA has not approved ivermectin for use in treating or preventing COVID-19 in humans. Ivermectin tablets are approved at specific doses for some parasitic worms, and there are topical (on the skin) formulations for head lice and skin conditions like rosacea. Ivermectin is not an anti-viral (a drug for treating viruses).
  • Taking large doses of this drug is dangerous and can cause serious harm.
  • If you have a prescription for ivermectin for an FDA-approved use, acquire it from a legitimate source and take it exactly as prescribed.
  • Never use medications intended for animals on yourself. Ivermectin preparations for animals are very different from those approved for humans. 

"There’s a lot of misinformation around, and you may have heard that it’s okay to take large doses of ivermectin," the statement continues. "That is wrong...Even the levels of ivermectin for approved uses can interact with other medications, like blood-thinners. You can also overdose on ivermectin, which can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, hypotension (low blood pressure), allergic reactions (itching and hives), dizziness, ataxia (problems with balance), seizures, coma and even death."

You can read the full FDA statement by clicking here 

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