The questionable science behind ivermectin's COVID-19 treatment

Frank Wallmeyer, along with other owners of farm supply stores in the United States, noticed ivermectin fleeing off the shelves over the past month. Wallmeyer reports that ivermectin sales at his Jacksonville store have almost tripled and that the phone rings daily with questions about the drug.

The questionable science behind ivermectin's COVID-19 treatment

Many of those who inquired weren't interested in getting rid of worms from horse and cattle intestines. They wanted to treat COVID-19 and prevent it from happening to their loved ones. Touted as a miracle COVID-19 cure by some doctors and campaigners, despite lacking scientific support, ivermectin seems to be in high demand among unvaccinated Americans. The rapid-growing Delta virus is ravaging the country and vaccine sceptics have turned to ivermectin as an alternative. While ivermectin has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat certain parasites in animals and humans, it is not authorized for use against COVID-19.

In several states, including Texas, Mississippi and Florida, poison control centers reported an increase in cases and calls related to ivermectin overdose and misuse. Also, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that in the week ending August 13, 2021, more than 88,000 prescriptions were written for ivermectin, representing a 24-fold increase from the pre-pandemic baseline of 3,600 prescriptions per week. This meant that some doctors were prescribing the drug to COVID-19, in spite of FDA's position.

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