(Natural News) Mainstream media reports have been focusing on the rising cases of overdoses of ivermectin in Oklahoma. However, these claims were found to be false.
While there had been calls for an end to using ivermectin for COVID because people have been self-administering the drug and have overdosed, this is not unheard of for any other drug.
Ivermectin has been endorsed by medical authorities overseas and has demonstrated remarkable effectiveness, so there are some that raised questions regarding the media reports.
KFOR, a news channel in Oklahoma reported that rural hospitals throughout the state were in danger of becoming overwhelmed with patients who have overdosed on ivermectin, an anti-parasitic drug that has been used as a possible treatment for COVID-19.
The story went viral and has circulated through mainstream media; however, its claim is substantially false.
The main point of the stories was from a series of quotes from an Oklahoma doctor who attributed the overcrowding at local hospitals to a deluge of ivermectin overdoses, the implication being that the ivermectin cure was dangerous for people who consumed it, and the medical system in general.
The story confirmed many media biases, but there is little reason to believe that the strain on Oklahoma hospitals is caused by ivermectin overdoses. One doctor from a local hospital noted that they have not treated any ivermectin overdoses, nor have they been forced to turn away patients.
In an updated Rolling Stone report, the publication said that there were 459 cases of ivermectin overdoses in the U.S. during the month of August, but it did not provide a state-by-state breakdown of the cases. (Related: FACT CHECK: Rolling Stone lied about hospitals being full of ivermectin overdose patients.)
However, Oklahoma has been experiencing large numbers of COVID-19 cases, with a seven-day average of 1,528 hospitalizations. This indicates that if hospitals are running out of beds, it is likely that the cases were due to COVID-19 infections, not ivermectin overdoses.
Introduced as a veterinary drug in the late 1970s, it was found to be effective in combating certain parasitic diseases and won the 2015 Nobel Prize for medicine. Though not officially approved by the World Health Organization as a treatment for COVID, people are now clamoring to get their hands on the drug.
Prescriptions for ivermectin have seen a sharp rise in recent weeks, with over 88,000 prescriptions per week in mid-August, compared to the pre-pandemic baseline average of 3,600 per week, as noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Some pharmacies are also reporting shortages of the drug, however, the biggest risk comes from people who take the livestock product, ingesting higher doses than is appropriate — one veterinary dose is sometimes 10 to 15 times the amount approved for humans.
Can ivermectin be used to treat COVID-19?
Despite its effectiveness, ivermectin is not approved by the FDA to treat COVID-19 patients, and as such, is recommended for use as part of a research setting, as part of a clinical trial. Further, ivermectin products that have been approved for animal use should not be taken by humans as they are formulated to treat large animals and contain high levels of ivermectin than is approved for human use.
Some studies have shown that ivermectin can inhibit virus replication in a lab, and that the medicine has a good safety profile.
A lead investigator in one of the studies said that his group hope to generate enough evidence to determine the effectiveness of ivermectin against COVID-19, and whether or not there are benefits associated with its use.
Ivermectin is an expensive and readily available drug that was historically used to treat parasitic infections in people and livestock. It has been touted as the wonder drug against COVID-19 and was embraced around the world, specifically in Latin America, South Africa, the Philippines, and India.
Read more COVID-19 related updates at Pandemic.news.