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Ivermectin Intended for Animals: Do Not Use as Treatment for COVID-19 in Humans

On April 10, 2020, The FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine posted a warning about the human use of ivermectin products approved for use in animals. An article was recently published describing the effect of ivermectin on SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) in a laboratory setting. Ivermectin was not administered to humans or animals in this research study. Further studies are necessary to test both the efficacy and safety of ivermectin in preventing or treating COVID-19.

Ivermectin is FDA-approved for the treatment of some internal and external parasites in both humans and a variety of animal species. There are separate FDA-approved ivermectin products for humans and animals. The safety and efficacy of drugs intended for use in animals are evaluated by the FDA only in the species for which they are labeled. Humans should never ingest any drug intended for use in animals, as it can cause serious harm. Drugs intended for animals cannot be substituted for those intended for humans.

Consumers should not take any form of ivermectin unless it has been prescribed by a licensed health care provider and obtained from a legitimate source. Consumers should not take any medications intended for use in animals.

The FDA is closely monitoring products for fraudulent claims to prevent, diagnose, treat, or cure COVID-19. Consumers are encouraged to alert the FDA of anyone claiming to have a product to cure or prevent COVID-19 by emailing or calling 1-888-InfoFDA (1-888-463-6332).

More information is available at the following links: