Ivermectin is an active ingredient that is known to most patients as the drug called Stromectol. In the first place, these are oral tablets for treating worm infections. Now, you may think that this drug is of no use for you, but statistics show that helminth invasions affect about 25% of people across the globe. However, to be objective, we must admit that the risk is higher in those regions where people do not have an opportunity to drink clean water and take proper care of their hygiene. Besides, such infections are rather common among small kids who can easily spread them to their families. Luckily, there is such a safe and affordable solution that removes the problem from the first dose. In addition, in recent years, you may have heard of Ivermectin due to the theory that it can be helpful in patients with Covid-19.
Possible Side Effects You Must Know About Before Trying It
To start with, we must clarify that the risk of side effects is minimal if you administer it in strict compliance with your doctor’s instructions. Besides, in the case of most infections, only one dose is needed — apparently, one tablet is not likely to cause any severe problems.
As for the widespread prejudice that ALL antihelminthic drugs are toxic to your organism, Ivermectin possesses no toxicity, nevertheless, you may notice such reactions as they are provoked by parasites living in your organism, especially when they die.
Now, let us proceed with the most frequently reported side effects. These are fever, skin rashes, and itching. At first glance, such symptoms may seem not so serious and they truly are. Yet, in some cases, they may point to a dangerous allergic reaction, which requires an urgent consultation with a doctor.
Besides, a considerable number of patients report such problems as swollen or tender lymph nodes and joint pains.
Speaking about other possible issues that are less common, mind that you may face dizziness, extreme tiredness, nausea, vomiting, indigestion, as well as swelling/pains/discomfort in the eyes (in the case of eye infections).
No doubt, if you face any side effects, you are obliged to see a doctor — that’s your personal responsibility. Nevertheless, in the case of river blindness or another infection demanding long-term therapy, you may be recommended to proceed with the treatment. In such a situation, your doctor will evaluate the risks and will decide whether the potential therapeutic benefits outweigh the associated discomfort in your case.
Major Rules for Safe and Efficient Treatment
- You are allowed to try this medication only after you receive the corresponding prescription. It is not intended for self-treatment.
- For the sake of safety, you must never take a dose that is higher than the one recommended to you personally as that will multiply the risk of adverse reactions.
- If you face any side effects, you must not abandon the course. Instead, you must turn to your doctor for further recommendations. As a rule, doctors need to see the results of your tests to confirm that there is no more need for the treatment.
- If your doctor decides that you must repeat the dose in a certain period, follow his instructions — do not let the parasites keep on intoxicating your organism.
- When choosing the dosage at a pharmacy, follow the prescription strictly. You must never opt for a bigger dose and, then, try breaking it — in such a way, you will get unequal parts and the effectiveness of your therapy will be at risk. There are three doses accessible to you — 3 mg, 6 mg, 12 mg.
- When talking to your doctor, be sure to inform him about any diseases diagnosed or symptoms you’ve noticed. Namely, it is especially critical to warn the doctor about your pregnancy, breastfeeding, liver diseases, or any problems with the immune system.
- Also, let your doctor know if you take any other medications or dietary supplements. Here is a short list of drugs that may interact with Ivermectin: Warfarin, Sodium Oxybate, Valproic Acid, benzodiazepines, barbiturates.
- It is allowed for pediatric patients, but their body weight must be no less than 15 kg.
- While one is administering Ivermectin, alcoholic beverages, marijuana, and other narcotic substances are banned as such combinations may increase the risk of dizziness and sleepiness.
- Many users would also probably ask about driving — it is safer to refrain from this activity as well, due to the above-mentioned risks along with possible tremors and seizures.
- Above, we’ve mentioned that, when one family member catches a helminthic infection, others are also likely to get infected. However, you must not share your medications with anyone, including your family, even if you are sure they have the same infection. This drug must be always prescribed by a doctor after a medical investigation.
The List of Indications
- ascariasis — one of the most frequently occurring parasitic infections on the planet — about 1 billion cases are registered every year;
- onchocerciasis (river blindness);
- lymphatic filariasis;
By the way, at pharmacies, you can also find this drug in the format of topical products, like creams or lotions, for treating rosacea and scabies.
Standard Therapy Schemes
First, remember a few rules:
- Your doctor will determine a personal course for you based on the age, weight, accompanying diagnoses, type of infection and its severity, thus, his recommendations are primary.
- For the sake of efficient absorption, it is advisable to take these pills on an empty stomach — 60 minutes before or 120 minutes after a meal. Identically to most other oral medications, this one must be administered with a glass of water.
- In case your doctor prescribed more than one dose, take the medicine at around the same time every day.
- For treating river blindness, one dose is not enough — such therapy usually takes a few years. But a patient is not supposed to take the drug on a constant basis — as a rule, one is prescribed two doses per year.
- To find out whether the infection is gone, a patient may be recommended to pass a repeated stool test.
Now, let us provide general recommendations on the dosage of this medication so that you know what to expect:
- ascariasis — 0.2 mg per kg;
- filariasis — 0.2 mg per kg;
- strongyloidiasis — 0.2 mg per kg;
- trichuriasis — 0.2 mg per kg (this dose must be repeated for 3 consecutive days);
- onchocerciasis — 0.15 mg per kg (this dose is usually repeated once per 6 months).
Why Should You Choose Ivermectin (Generic)?
- It helps to get rid of a wide range of parasitic worms.
- A short treatment course. In most cases, parasites are removed from the organism after the first dose.
- A minimal risk of side effects. Since there is only one dose needed, the amount of the active substance accumulating in the organism is pretty small. Sure, in the case of long courses, the frequency of side effects raises.
- No toxicity.
- Safety for children.
- Availability in cheaper generic formats.
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