Health & Medicine

Is Ivermectin Safe? Uses, Dosage, and Side Effects


Ivermectin 6 mg tablet, a medication with a broad spectrum of antiparasitic activity, has gained attention for its potential use in treating various conditions, including parasitic infections and, more recently, as a controversial treatment for viral infections like COVID-19. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of Ivermectin, focusing on its safety, uses, recommended dosage, and potential side effects.

Ivermectin: An Overview

Ivermectin was discovered in the late 1970s and has since become an essential tool in the global fight against neglected tropical diseases, such as river blindness and lymphatic filariasis. It belongs to a class of drugs known as macrocyclic lactones and works by disrupting the nervous system of parasites, leading to their paralysis and eventual death.

Approved Uses

Ivermectin 6mg is FDA-approved for the treatment of certain parasitic infections in humans. Common indications include onchocerciasis (river blindness), strongyloidiasis (a type of roundworm infection), and helminthiasis caused by intestinal threadworm. Additionally, it is widely used in veterinary medicine to treat various parasitic infestations in animals.

Controversial Use in COVID-19

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Ivermectin gained widespread attention and controversy due to claims suggesting its efficacy in preventing and treating the virus. However, it’s important to note that the scientific community remains divided on the effectiveness of Ivermectin in COVID-19 treatment, and its use for this purpose is not universally endorsed by health authorities.

Safety Profile

In general, Ivermectin is considered safe when used at approved doses for its intended indications. The safety profile is well-established through years of use in treating parasitic infections. However, when considering Ivermectin’s potential for off-label use or misuse, caution is warranted.

Recommended Dosage

The dosage of Ivermectin varies depending on the specific condition being treated. For onchocerciasis, a single oral dose is usually administered, while treatment for strongyloidiasis may involve multiple doses. Dosages in veterinary medicine are weight-dependent.

It is crucial to emphasize that self-medication or using Ivermectin without proper medical guidance can lead to adverse effects. The dosage should be determined by a qualified healthcare professional based on the individual’s weight, medical history, and the specific condition being treated.

Potential Side Effects

While Ivermectin is generally well-tolerated, it is not without potential side effects. Common side effects include headache, dizziness, nausea, and diarrhea. These symptoms are often mild and transient.

In rare cases, especially when used at higher than recommended doses, more serious side effects may occur. These can include allergic reactions, skin rash, and, in extreme cases, neurological effects such as seizures. The risk of adverse effects is heightened when Ivermectin is used inappropriately or in conjunction with other medications that may interact adversely.

Contradictory Evidence on Safety

The safety of Ivermectin has been a subject of debate, particularly in the context of its use for COVID-19. Some studies suggest a favorable safety profile when used at recommended doses, while others highlight potential risks associated with higher concentrations or prolonged use.

It is essential to distinguish between the established safety of Ivermectin in approved doses for parasitic infections and the uncertainties surrounding its off-label use, especially in the context of COVID-19, where research findings are still evolving.

Clinical Trials and Research

To provide a clearer understanding of Ivermectin’s safety and efficacy in various conditions, ongoing clinical trials and robust research efforts are necessary. These studies aim to assess the drug’s potential benefits, optimal dosages, and any associated risks, providing a foundation for evidence-based medical decision-making.


Ivermectin, when used within approved guidelines for its established indications, has demonstrated a good safety profile in treating parasitic infections. However, its controversial use for conditions like COVID-19 underscores the importance of evidence-based medicine and the need for well-designed clinical trials.

As with any medication, the decision to use Ivermectin should be made in consultation with a qualified healthcare professional. Self-prescribing or using unregulated sources can lead to adverse effects and compromise patient safety. Ongoing research will continue to shed light on the potential benefits and risks of Ivermectin in various medical contexts, contributing to a more informed and nuanced understanding of this widely-used antiparasitic drug.


Is Ivermectin safe for use?

Ivermectin is generally considered safe when used at approved doses for its intended indications, such as the treatment of parasitic infections. However, its safety in off-label uses, particularly for conditions like COVID-19, is a subject of ongoing debate and research.

What are the approved uses of Ivermectin?

Ivermectin is FDA-approved for the treatment of certain parasitic infections in humans, including onchocerciasis (river blindness), strongyloidiasis, and intestinal threadworm infections. It is also widely used in veterinary medicine for treating parasitic infestations in animals.

Can Ivermectin be used to prevent or treat COVID-19?

The use of Ivermectin for preventing or treating COVID-19 is controversial. While some studies suggest potential benefits, the scientific community remains divided, and health authorities do not universally endorse its use for this purpose. It is essential to consult with a healthcare professional for guidance.

What is the recommended dosage of Ivermectin?

The dosage of Ivermectin varies based on the specific condition being treated. It is crucial to follow the guidance of a qualified healthcare professional who will determine the appropriate dosage considering factors such as weight, medical history, and the nature of the parasitic infection.

Are there any side effects associated with Ivermectin?

Common side effects of Ivermectin include mild and transient symptoms such as headache, dizziness, nausea, and diarrhea. In rare cases, more serious side effects, including allergic reactions, skin rash, and neurological effects, may occur, especially with misuse or higher than recommended doses.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button