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Coronavirus

Health experts warn against use of anti-parasitic horse medication to treat COVID-19

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Health experts in the US are warning people against the use of Ivermectin, a drug that is often used to treat or prevent parasites in horses and other animals, as a home remedy for COVID-19.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said recently of a growing trend interest in using ivermectin to treat humans with COVID-19.

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“Ivermectin is often used in the US to treat or prevent parasites in animals. The FDA has received multiple reports of patients who have required medical support and been hospitalized after self-medicating with ivermectin intended for horses,” the FDA wrote.

“For one thing, animal drugs are often highly concentrated because they are used for large animals like horses and cows, which can weigh a lot more than we do—a ton or more. Such high doses can be highly toxic in humans,” the FDA added.

Stephen Thornton, the medical director of the Poison Control Center for the University of Kansas Health System, told FOX 4 that there has been a growing trend among people from his state in taking the medication as a home treatment for COVID-19.

“We have over the last, I guess, about six months or so started to see an uptick in cases where people are taking it for COVID,” Thornton said.

“The dose makes the poison. And even a very, very safe medication like ivermectin, one can turn into a problem if you take just huge amounts of it,” FOX 4 quoted Thornton as saying.

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