SHOTS HEALTH NEWS – Through July and August, Julie Smith watched her husband Jeffrey get worse and worse from COVID-19. In early July, the healthy, 51-year-old outdoorsman had tested positive for the coronavirus.
Within a week, he was admitted to the intensive care unit at a hospital near their home, in the suburbs of Cincinnati, Ohio.
The hospital treated him with antiviral drugs, convalescent plasma and steroids, but he continued to decline. Weeks later he was on a ventilator, in a medically induced coma — “on death’s doorstep,” Smith wrote in a legal complaint filed August 20.
Smith felt the hospital had given up on her husband, but she could not, according to the complaint.
After doing research on the internet, she sued the hospital to require it to treat her husband with ivermectin — an inexpensive anti-parasitic drug that’s been used to cure animals and people from worms and lice since the 1980s.
“Myths and beliefs around the drug have taken on a life of their own…”
U.S. health authorities and most doctors do not recommend using it to prevent or treat COVID-19, citing a lack of clear evidence on whether the drug works.
Yet myths and beliefs around the drug have taken on a life of their own, fueled by a small group of doctors whose views diverge from the medical consensus …
by right wing commentators, and by internet groups where people share tips on sourcing and dosing.
That people like Smith, and a handful of other families of COVID-19 patients, are turning to the courts to enforce treatment with the drug, shows how heated the debate over ivermectin has come to be in the U.S.
“There’s misinformation on both sides,” says Jennifer Granston, head of insights at Zignal Labs, a firm that conducts data analysis on internet trends.
“Advocates for ivermectin have called it a wonder drug — and it is, for treating parasites … ”
Considering new uses for a ‘wonder drug’
Advocates for ivermectin have called it a wonder drug — and it is, for treating parasites …