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Local infectious disease specialist warns against the use of Ivermectin drug

The drug is gaining traction as more people speak out in favor of the treatment to fight COVID-19.

Interest in the Ivermectin drug has grown throughout the pandemic. It is an anti-parasite treatment typically used among animals. Recently, more people across the country have spoken out in favor of use of the drug as a weapon against COVID.

"Some people are taking the formulations of Ivermectin that are designed to treat animals," said Jaime Fergie, the infectious disease director at Driscoll Children's Hospital.

Fergie said the use of Ivermectin could cause nausea, numbness and even seizures. 

"Studies in the laboratory, what we call invitro studies do show that Ivermectin can suppress the growth of the COVID-19 viruses, but it is only in the lab," said Fergie.

He added the interest in the drug use against COVID, came from lab studies done at the beginning of the pandemic.

"We were all looking for medication that were already available, that could have a benefit," said Fergie.

But still, no clinical trials or studies have proven the effectiveness of the treatment. The FDA was also in agreement, they stated they have not approved Ivermectin use in preventing or treating COVID-19 in humans. It is used to treat infections caused by some parasitic worm and under specific dosage.

"It is like we have, you know, vaccines, the best thing in the world. You know we're praying so hard for it and a solution, we have them we're not using it," said Fergie.