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Africa CDC warns against use of Ivermectin as COVID-19 drug

Africa CDC warns against use of Ivermectin as COVID-19 drug
February 19
18:00 2021

The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has cautioned against the use of Ivermectin as a treatment or preventions for the coronavirus disease.

Ivermectin is a drug used to treat river blindness, scabies and other parasitic infections. 

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the agency said there is no conclusive clinical data to support the safety and efficacy of the drug against COVID-19.

The agency acknowledged the existence of some studies that suggest potential effectiveness of Ivermectin in the prevention and management of coronavirus.

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However, it noted that most of the studies had limitations such as small number of participants, variation in doses and schedules of the drug, and that some participants were on other medications, among others.

“Although ivermectin inhibits the replication of SARS-CoV-2 in laboratory studies, the doses used in the laboratory to produce those results are 100-fold higher than those approved for use in humans,” the statement read.

“Therefore, data from well-designed, randomized, controlled clinical trials are needed to provide evidence for decision on the efficacy of Ivermectin for preventing and treating COVID-19.

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“Africa CDC will continue to monitor emerging evidence on the safety and efficacy of Ivermectin for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 and provide update.”

In January, Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo had pledged the support of the federal government for a team of Nigerian professors and scientists investigating the efficacy of Ivermectin against coronavirus.

Contrary to the findings of the Africa CDC, the Nigerian research team proposed that Ivermectin should be considered for adoption into the uniform treatment guidelines of COVID-19 in the country.

The drug is also proving popular in other countries, including India where most world’s pharmaceutical products are manufactured.

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