Why do people want to use Ivermectin but not FDA-approved vaccines?

I have a friend on Facebook who has been promoting Ivermectin for months. She is not, in  my experience, a right winger, a Trump supporter, or a crazy person. Maybe a fan of alternative medicine, but that’s about it.

Maybe a month ago, she sent me a link to an article from the Mountain  Home Magazine (reaching parts of Pennsylvania and the Finger Lakes in New York) entitled “The Drug that Cracked Covid.”  The article included a long profile of Dr. Pierre Kory, a critical care physician who, at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, became a fierce advocate of off-label uses of existing drugs. One of those drugs is Ivermectin.

Ivermectin is medication used to treat parasite infections in both humans and animals. It is the “horse dewormer” of so many recent memes.

Although not particularly dangerous in small doses, Ivermectin is contra-indicated in large doses, where it can cause issues with neurotoxicity, including depression of the central nervous system, and potentially even coma and death. There is, of course, no reason that a medicine that treats parasite infections should be useful against a highly transmissible respiratory-based viral infection. But I’ll leave that argument to the scientists.

Ivermectin joins a long list of miracle cures for Covid-19 including:

  • Chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine (Donald Trump’s favorite drug)
  • Certain vitamins, including Vitamin D
  • Chinese herbal remedies
  • Common cold and flu treatment like aspirin and antihistamines
  • Cow dung and urine (in parts of India)
  • 2-Deoxy-D-glucose
  • Silver
  • Mustard oil
  • Spiritual healing

What is interesting about all this is the degree to which people want to use medications other than those recommended by the scientists and experts: namely vaccines.

I’ve previously discussed Andew Wakefield and his false connection between childhood vaccines and autism. But why the hostility to vaccines in general?

While the Covid-19 vaccines can cause a day or two of discomfort, they cause almost no other problems, and we now have the data for many of the approximately 5 billion humans who have received at least one dose of a vaccine, and the approximate 2 billion humans who have now been fully vaccinated. 

If the vaccines caused major problems, we would know that by now.

And still, the number of people who are vaccine-hesitant is extraordinary, as is the number of people who would rather take a “horse dewormer” than just take an effing vaccine.

About a1skeptic

A disturbed citizen and skeptic. I should stop reading the newspaper. Or watching TV. I should turn off NPR and disconnect from the Internet. We’d all be better off.
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