Head lice: These tiny insects live on the scalp and are transmitted through close contact with someone who has lice.
Onchocerciasis (also known as “river blindness”): This is caused by a type of parasitic worm that affects the skin and eyes. It is transmitted through fly bites.
Rosacea: This skin condition causes redness and fluid-filled bumps on the face. It is not contagious.
Strongyloidiasis: This is caused by an intestinal roundworm. It is transmitted through contaminated soil.
There’s some evidence that ivermectin may be effective in treating scabies, a parasitic skin mite that can cause intense itching, but ivermectin has not been approved by the FDA for that purpose.
In animals, ivermectin is used to treat heartworm and some other types of parasites.
How is ivermectin usually administered in humans?
For internal parasites, an oral medication is usually prescribed. For skin-based issues, patients may be given a lotion or a cream to apply.
Can oral ivermectin be used to prevent or treat a COVID-19 infection?
No. There is no conclusive clinical evidence showing that ivermectin is effective at either preventing a COVID-19 infection or treating one. People should not take ivermectin to prevent or treat COVID-19.
Is it dangerous for people to take ivermectin meant for animals?
Absolutely. Taking any medication meant for animals can make you really, really sick. So, it is very dangerous.
For one thing, medicines designed for livestock frequently contain other ingredients that are not meant for human consumption. They are also often highly concentrated, because they’re made for creatures that outweigh us by five times or more. And these products have only been tested and approved for use on the animals designated, so how they might negatively affect humans is unknown.
No one should ever be taking any medicine meant for animals. And they shouldn’t be taking the human version of ivermectin either, at least not to prevent or treat COVID-19.
Ivermectin is a safe drug when it’s used correctly and for the appropriate conditions. But we don’t recommend it for COVID-19, and we are not going to use it for that on anyone. It could have serious side effects.