Ivermectin, Covid-19, And Why It Could Be Miraculous

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by Lew Rockwell, Lew Rockwell:

I hope you have heard about Ivermectin, not only because of its almost miraculous development, efficacy and safety; but also because it could become the ultimate red pill.

First the history of Ivermectin. I quote at length from an important review paper by Dr. Pierre Kory (and others notably Dr. Paul Marik) of Front Line doctors. The Front Line Covid-19 Critical Care Alliance is the source of the best medical protocols for treating Covid-19. I have left the reference links in the passage.

History of ivermectin

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In 1975, Professor Satoshi Omura at the Kitsato institute in Japan isolated an unusual Streptomyces bacterium from the soil near a golf course along the southeast coast of Honshu, Japan. Omura, along with William Campbell, found that the bacterial culture could cure mice infected with the roundworm Heligmosomoides polygyrus. Campbell isolated the active compounds from the bacterial culture, naming them “avermectins” and the bacterium S. avermitilis for the compounds’ ability to clear mice of worms.7 Despite decades of searching around the world, the Japanese microorganism remains the only source of avermectin ever found. Ivermectin, a derivative of avermectin, then proved revolutionary. Originally introduced as a veterinary drug, it soon made historic impacts in human health, improving the nutrition, general health, and well-being of billions of people worldwide ever since it was first used to treat onchocerciasis (river blindness) in humans in 1988. It proved ideal in many ways, given that it was highly effective, broad-spectrum, safe, well tolerated, and could be easily administered.7 Although it was used to treat a variety of internal nematode infections, it was most known as the essential mainstay of 2 global disease elimination campaigns that has nearly eliminated the world of two of its most disfiguring and devastating diseases. The unprecedented partnership between Merck & Co. Inc, and the Kitasato Institute combined with the aid of international health care organizations has been recognized by many experts as one of the greatest medical accomplishments of the 20th century. One example was the decision by Merck & Co to donate ivermectin doses to support the Mectizan Donation Program that then provided more than 570 million treatments in its first 20 years alone.8 Ivermectin’s impacts in controlling onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis, diseases which blighted the lives of billions of the poor and disadvantaged throughout the tropics, is why its discoverers were awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2015 and the reason for its inclusion on the World Health Organization’s (WHO) “List of Essential Medicines.” Furthermore, it has also been used to successfully overcome several other human diseases and new uses for it are continually being found.7

Following are the section headings from Dr. Kory’s paper.

“Preclinical studies of Ivermectin’s activity against SARS-CoV-2”

“Preclinical studies of ivermectin’s anti-inflammatory properties”

“Exposure prophylaxis studies of ivermectin’s ability to prevent transmission of COVID-19”

“Clinical studies on the efficacy of ivermectin in treating mildly ill outpatients”

“Clinical studies of the efficacy of ivermectin in hospitalized patients”

“Ivermectin in post-COVID-19 syndrome”

“Epidemiological data showing impacts of widespread ivermectin use on population case counts and case fatality rates”

He then sums up this evidence in the section called “The evidence base for ivermectin against COVID-19” that I quote below, once again with reference links intact.

“To date, the efficacy of ivermectin in COVID-19 has been supported by the following:

  1. Since 2012, multiple in vitro studies have demonstrated that Ivermectin inhibits the replication of many viruses, including influenza, Zika, Dengue, and others.917
  2. Ivermectin inhibits SARS-CoV-2 replication and binding to host tissue through several observed and proposed mechanisms.18
  3. Ivermectin has potent anti-inflammatory properties with in vitro data demonstrating profound inhibition of both cytokine production and transcription of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB), the most potent mediator of inflammation.3739
  4. Ivermectin significantly diminishes viral load and protects against organ damage in multiple animal models when infected with SARS-CoV-2 or similar coronaviruses.31,32
  5. Ivermectin prevents transmission and development of COVID-19 disease in those exposed to infected patients.4045
  6. Ivermectin hastens recovery and prevents deterioration in patients with mild to moderate disease treated early after symptoms.45,4952,61,62
  7. Ivermectin hastens recovery and avoidance of ICU admission and death in hospitalized patients.45,51,53,6366
  8. Ivermectin reduces mortality in critically ill patients with COVID-19.45,53,63
  9. Ivermectin leads to temporally associated reductions in case fatality rates in regions after ivermectin distribution campaigns.48
  10. The safety, availability, and cost of ivermectin are nearly unparalleled given its low incidence of important drug interactions along with only mild and rare side effects observed in almost 40 years of use and billions of doses administered.75
  11. The World Health Organization has long included ivermectin on its “List of Essential Medicines.”

A summary of the statistically significant results from the above controlled trials are as follows. Note that RCT is for randomized controlled trial and OCT is for observational controlled trial.

“Controlled trials in the prophylaxis of COVID-19 (8 studies)

  1. All 8 available controlled trial results show statistically significant reductions in transmission.
  2. Three RCTs with large statistically significant reductions in transmission rates, N = 774 patients.4446
  3. Five OCTs with large statistically significant reductions in transmission rates, N = 2052 patients.4043,47

Controlled trials in the treatment of COVID-19 (19 studies)

  1. Five RCTs with statistically significant impacts in time to recovery or hospital length of stay.45,49,53,64,65
  2. One RCT with a near statistically significant decrease in time to recovery, P = 0.07, N = 130.54
  3. One RCT with a large, statistically significant reduction in the rate of deterioration or hospitalization, N = 363.49
  4. Two RCTs with a statistically significant decrease in viral load, days of anosmia, and cough, N = 85.57,60
  5. Three RCTs with large, statistically significant reductions in mortality (N = 695).45,60,65
  6. One RCT with a near statistically significant reduction in mortality, P = 0.052 (N = 140).53
  7. Three OCTs with large, statistically significant reductions in mortality (N = 1688).51,63,66

If reading scientific literature is not your thing, watch the long form Pierre Kory interview with Bret Weinstein to have a sense of how well and in so many ways Ivermectin could end the pandemic in a matter of weeks. As a follow up, see Weinstein and his wife Heather Hying on their Darkhorse Q&A for a discussion of plotted data for Indian states that employed Ivermectin.

The last section heading in the review paper before the Discussion is called “Safety of ivermectin.” In my view the safety is obvious by the fact that it has been widely and safely used for decades. Consider this quote from a paper in the Bulletin of the World Health Organization | August 2004, 82 (8)3-571. “Adverse events associated with ivermectin were of only mild to moderate severity, and in all cases they resolved spontaneously. Abdominal discomfort, the most common adverse event, is probably caused by worms dying and disintegrating, especially Ascaris lumbricoides.”

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