The Emporia Gazette
Twenty-eight positives and 93 recoveries were reported Wednesday as both Kansas Department of Health and Environment and Lyon County Public Health officials sent out calls to the public against the use of a common de-worming medication to treat COVID-19.
KDHE cited a “rise in calls to poison control centers and visits to emergency rooms” for the public service announcement against taking the medication “unless prescribed by a physician” exactly as prescribed.
“This drug is not approved or authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat or prevent COVID-19. Ivermectin has been approved in humans to treat specific skin conditions like rosacea, head lice or some parasitic worms,” according to a release from KDHE. “Ivermectin is used in livestock as an anti-parasite medicine and can be found in livestock supply centers. Livestock drugs are highly concentrated for large animals and can be highly toxic in humans.”
“Kansans should avoid taking medications that are intended for animals and should only take ivermectin as prescribed by their physician,” said Lee Norman, M.D., Secretary of KDHE. “These highly concentrated doses can cause severe illness and even death in humans. The COVID-19 vaccine remains the most effective way to prevent COVID-19.”
“There is growing interest in a drug called ivermectin to treat COVID-19,” Lyon County Public Health said in a post to social media Wednesday. “This is not a ‘miracle cure’ for COVID-19, and taking medication designed for animals can cause serious harm.
“Don’t take livestock medication. You are not a sheep. Stop following internet fads that can affect your health.”
An ivermectin overdose causes gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Overdoses are associated with hypotension and neurologic effects such as decreased consciousness, confusion, hallucinations, seizures, coma and death. Ivermectin may intensify the effects of other drugs that cause central nervous system depression, such as benzodiazepines and barbiturates.
KDHE said the COVID-19 vaccine “is the safest and most effective way to prevent getting sick and protect against severe disease and death from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, including the Delta variant.” Mask-wearing, hand hygiene and social distancing is also encouraged to mitigate the spread of the virus. Find a COVID-19 vaccine near you by visiting https://www.vaccines.gov.
Overall, 4,809 total positives have been reported since March 2020 including 4,619 recoveries and 88 deaths. There are currently 102 active cases. There have been 113 collective breakthroughs — 32 were Janssen, 57 were Moderna and 24 were Pfizer. Six people are hospitalized.
To see more information, please visit our COVID-19 dashboard at https://www.publichealth.lyoncounty.org/covid-19.