Health officials condemned ivermectin as a useless and even dangerous treatment for COVID-19. The media smeared the well-known and commonly used anti-parasitic drug as a “horse dewormer,” even though it has always been a human medicine as well. They mercilessly mocked people who thought the drug might help them.
But it turns out ivermectin can actually help certain people fight off COVID-19, according to science writer Scott Alexander.
In a lengthy blog post , Alexander took a deep dive into all available studies on ivermectin and whether it works against COVID-19. It’s worth reading in full, but I’ll highlight his main point: Ivermectin does work, albeit indirectly, especially in areas where parasitic and intestinal worms are common.
There’s a reason the most impressive ivermectin studies came from parts of the world where worms are prevalent, he says. Parasites suppress the immune system, making it more difficult for the human body to fight off viruses. Thus, getting rid of worm infections makes it easier for COVID-19 patients to bounce back from the virus.
If Alexander’s hypothesis is correct, he’s also right that everyone who hastily jumped to a conclusion about ivermectin was wrong. Ivermectin is not the COVID-19 cure that some made it out to be, but it’s also not useless in the fight against COVID-19 either. It does have some benefits — they’re just minimal and far less effective than other therapeutics, such as monoclonal antibody treatments. (Read more from “Everyone Was Wrong About Ivermectin” HERE)
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