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Marlow Veterinarian speaks on people using animal Ivermectin for COVID

Published: Aug. 26, 2021 at 9:16 PM CDT
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MARLOW, Okla. (KSWO) - Reports of people using the drug Ivermectin to prevent or treat Covid-19 are increasing.

The medication is a dewormer for horse and live stock.

It’s used to prevent or treat internal and external parasitic infections in animals.

Veterinarian Dr. Jeff Hammond said he’s gotten a number of calls from people asking about using the animal version of the medicine.

He believes people should refrain from taking it.

“Well, because it’s not made, for humans, it’s made for animals, and we try to separate the human medicine and animals medicine. I know a lot of the drugs are the same that are used, but when it’s not approved for you, then you’re really taking a risk on yourself by doing that,” Dr. Hammond said.

He said there is Ivermectin for humans approved by the FDA, but it’s not approved to prevent or treat COVID-19.

“In humans, it has been used to treat different worms. Scabies it’s a mite that lives on the skin. They’ve also used it to reduce malaria,” Dr. Hammond said.

All those people are clearing the shelves for the animal ivermectin Scott Schaeffer with the Oklahoma Center for Poison and Drug Information says so far, they’ve only got 11 reports on it.

“We had one call about it in May. Three calls in July and six calls regarding seven patients in total in August. So interest is kind of ramping up in the state, and we’re keeping our eye very closely on Ivermectin being used, particularly humans using products intended for animals,” Schaeffer said.

From those reports symptoms that people are having from the medication are minor.

“We have seen upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, and some dizziness. We have not seen anything that would require hospitalization, and we have not seen any fatalities. All of these cases we have been able to manage at home. Our pharmacists and nurses have provided instructions maybe to give somebody some relief, and we’ll follow up at home in order to make sure everything is okay,” Schaeffer said.

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