Ivermectin - What Is It and Could This Be A Cure For Coronavirus?

Ivermectin is a medication known for infections caused by parasites and is well known for treating lice infestations. It has been cited as a possible candidate to use against Coronavirus (COVID-19). Presently, laboratory tests have indicated that Ivermectin has the potential to stop COVID-19 from replicating.What is important to determine is if this can be translated to actual patients.


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While its current uses are safe for humans, pregnant women are one exception as are small children less than thirty three pounds. When dealing with human test subjects, the dosage and method of delivery are important factors that must be determined to obtain accurate and safe results. While the early studies have been in Australia, the drug is approved for its current uses by the USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is also included on the World Health Organization's (WHO) model list of essential medicines.

A significant increase in dosage from the current use will probably be required for use against COVID-19, by some estimations  twenty to twenty five times for than what is used clinically. Since Ivermectin is a  drug that has already undergone laboratory studies, trials and approval regarding the treatment of other conditions, it has an edge in the production of a new medicine. Developing a new drug or vaccine is in the best of times a very long process in order to establish safety for the patients. Known side effects of Ivermectin for its current use are nausea, itching, rashes, constipation, vomiting, low blood pressure, diarrhea, dizziness, tremors, facial swelling and a lack of energy. The laboratory studies have also demonstrated that Ivermectin can be used to treat other viral infections such as influenza, Zika, HIV and dengue. Researchers suspect that Ivermectin's success in the laboratory with COVID-19 is due to Ivermectin's ability to stop the nuclear transport at the cellular level by stopping the mechanisms that permit proteins to travel within the actual virus. This in  turn has the potential to stop COVID-19 from replicating itself which is one of the biggest obstacles in patient treatment. In addition to currently being used for humans regarding parasite infestations such as lice, Ivermectin is also used for parasite infestations in animals. It is not considered safe to use or self medicate with medicines containing Ivermectin that were designated for animal use as they are specifically designed for particular animal species and the compound in the medicines can be harmful to humans. If Ivermectin is considered viable for humans against COVID-19, it is expected to be affordable based on current cost analysis of its current uses.  It is also noted that the deployment of Ivermectin is dependent on further pre-clinical and clinical testing which will require funding.



 

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