Study: Cheap hair lice drug may cure COVID-19

WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:

  • Study says that a hair lice drug, which costs between $17 and $43, could treat COVID-19.
  • In a study involving the lice drug ivermectin, only eight patients out of 573 have passed away — compared to the 44 deaths out of 510 patients who were given a placebo.
  • Critics, however, were saying that the study is still premature and would require further investigation before it can conclude that the lice drug can cure the virus.

There’s a potential $20-buck treatment for COVID-19.

A new study showing an 80% drop of coronavirus deaths led scholars to examine head lice drug ivermectin as a possible cure for the virus.

Out of the 573 patients who got ivermectin, only eight passed away, while 44 individuals, out of 510, have died after being given a placebo.

According to GoodRx, an earlier study of the anti-parasitic drug showed promising results in April by removing all viral RNA within 48 hours with a single dose. The prescription drug costs between $17 and $43, depending on the course of treatment.

Virologist Andrew Hill of Liverpool University has called the new study as “transformational” in the hunt for a coronavirus treatment. His findings were based on over 1,400 patients and were made public on YouTube through livestream.

Currently, the research is waiting for peer review before its official broadcast.

“If we see these same trends observed consistently across more studies, then this really is going to be a transformational treatment,” said Hill.

Critics, though, appealed that further research is needed before pronouncing that the lice drug is effective. Seeing that the conclusion is still premature, they cited that other buzz methods, such as hydroxychloroquine and tocilizumab, have failed to perform.

“All we have are observational studies and clinicians’ opinions,” said University of Sydney professor Andrew McLachlan, the Daily Mail reported. “Many of the current studies have low numbers of participants, weak study designs, and inconsistent (and relatively low) ivermectin dosing regimes, with ivermectin frequently given in combination with other drugs.”

Source: New York Post

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