— Losing streak continues for controversial antiparasitic

by Ed Susman

A higher dose of ivermectin given for a longer duration still failed to offer any benefit in mild to moderate COVID-19, data from a large randomized U.S. trial showed.

In the ACTIV-6 trial of more than 1,200 largely vaccinated outpatients, the median time to sustained recovery was an identical 11 days with either 6 days of ivermectin at a targeted daily dose of 600 μg/kg or placebo (P=0.68), reported Susanna Naggie, MD, MHS, of the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina.

And no difference was seen for the secondary endpoint of hospitalization, urgent or emergency department care visits, or death, at 5.7% with ivermectin compared with 6% with placebo (P=0.53), according to findings detailed at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections annual meeting.

“These findings do not support the use of ivermectin in outpatients with COVID-19,” said Naggie.

One death and four hospitalizations occurred in the ivermectin group versus no deaths and two hospitalizations in the placebo group. Overall, adverse events (AEs) were uncommon in both arms.

Results of the trial were published simultaneously in JAMA.

In an accompanying editor’s noteJAMA Editor-in-Chief Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, MD, PhD, and Preeti Malani, MD, MSJ, the journal’s deputy editor, pointed out that a 2022 Cochrane meta-analysis of 11 eligible studies showed no benefit with ivermectin for COVID-19, and that three randomized trials since then have all reached the same conclusion.

Yet the negative trials failed to silence proponents of the controversial antiparasitic, with criticism often lobbed at the dosage selected or duration of treatment used in trials.

Link to article in MedPage Today by Ed Susman



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