Washington Poison Center warns ivermectin should not be used to treat COVID
The Washington Poison Center reports at least 10 people in Washington state have been treated for problems related to the ivermectin drug being used off-label to try to prevent or treat COVID-19.
Ivermectin is prescribed to humans and animals to treat parasitic worms, head lice, and skin conditions. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not approved it as a COVID treatment.
Even so, some people are using veterinary-strength doses of ivermectin and having bad reactions to it.
The Washington State Department of Health recently issued a warning of its own that people should not take ivermectin to prevent or treat COVID-19, following a Health Alert Network advisory released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Evidence shows ivermectin is ineffective at treating COVID-19 and side effects can be dangerous. Side effects can include, but are not limited to, skin rash, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, facial or limb swelling, dizziness, seizures, confusion, a sudden drop in blood pressure, and liver injury.
“Drugs prescribed for animals are often highly concentrated because they are used for large animals and therefore may be toxic to humans,” the state DOH wrote in a release. “The FDA has received multiple reports of people who were hospitalized after self-medicating with ivermectin intended for horses. In July 2021, poison control centers across the country reported a five-fold increase in the number of calls for human exposure to ivermectin.”
The KIRO Radio Newsdesk contributed to this report.