Doctors are being barred from prescribing ivermectin to their COVID-19 patients, and the Food and Drug Administration has joined media in mocking users, but the antiviral drug is featured on the National Institutes of Health website as a treatment for COVID-19.
In fact, ivermectin is the second drug listed – under the highly touted, expensive COVID-19 drug with many side effects, remdesivir – on an NIH page titled “Antiviral Agents That Are Approved or Under Evaluation for the Treatment of COVID-19.”
Ivermectin has not been approved by the FDA as a COVID-19 treatment. But it is approved by the FDA for other treatments and has been successfully used off-label for COVID-19 patients. From 10% to 20% of all prescribed drugs are used off-label. Ivermectin has been shown to be effective in an least 65 controlled studies and 32 randomized controlled trials as a preventative and early- and late-stage treatment. Studies have demonstrated its ability to inhibit the replication of SARS-CoV-2 as well as its strong anti-inflammatory properties.
But doctors and pharmacists have disclosed that health-care management is barring them from prescribing ivermectin. And the drug recently was the target of a media and government disinformation campaign, dismissing it disingenuously as “horse dewormer.” The FDA’s official Twitter account posted a caption above a photo of a horse: “You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it.”
NIH points out on its “antiviral agents” page that among the serious side effects seen in patients who take remdesivir are severe renal failure and liver damage. Ivermectin, on the other hand, is “generally well tolerated.” MORE