The I-TECH study concluded that the antiparasitic drug did not help to reduce the risk of developing severe illness from Covid-19.
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Ivermectin has been proven in studies to be ineffective in reducing the risk of developing severe illness from Covid-19.
According to New Straits Times, Malaysia’s clinical trial study on the effectiveness of Ivermectin has been published in an international peer-reviewed medical journal.
The study entitled ‘Efficacy of Ivermectin Treatment on Disease Progression Among Adults With Mild to Moderate Covid-19 and Comorbidities’ was published on 18 February in the JAMA Internal Medicine, a monthly peer-reviewed medical journal published by the American Medical Association.
Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin congratulated the Institute for Clinical Research (ICR) and its director Dr Kalaiarasu Periasamy.
Malaysia’s clinical trial on Ivermectin’s ineffectiveness in reducing severe COVID-19 has been published in an international peer-reviewed medical journal. Congratulations @drkalai61 & @ICR_NIH. https://t.co/5RJvxqp2fq— Khairy Jamaluddin 🇲🇾🌺 (@Khairykj) February 19, 2022
The I-TECH study
The Ivermectin Treatment Efficacy in Covid-19 High-Risk Patients (I-TECH) study was an open-label randomised clinical trial to study the effectiveness of the antiparasitic drug in reducing the risk of developing severe disease in patients.
It was conducted at 20 public hospitals and a Covid-19 quarantine centre in Malaysia between 31 May 2021 and 25 October 2021.
The study enrolled patients 50 years and older with laboratory-confirmed Covid-19, comorbidities and mild to moderate disease, within the first week of showing symptoms.
The I-Tech study involved 490 patients who were given a five-day course of oral Ivermectin during the first week of illness.
The findings showed that Ivermectin did not reduce the risk of developing severe disease compared with the standard of care.
In this randomised clinical trial of high-risk patients with mild to moderate Covid-19, Ivermectin treatment during early illness did not prevent progression to severe disease. The study findings do not support the use of Ivermectin for patients with Covid-19.The conclusion in the I-Tech study.
Not recommended as a treatment
Due to the findings, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said Ivermectin could not be recommended to be included as part of the current Covid-19 treatment guidelines.
Noor Hisham added that the results in the I-TECH study were in line with the large-scale studies such as IVERCOR-Covid-19 from Argentine and TOGETHER from Brazil.
Both studies did not support the routine use of Ivermectin in the clinical practice of Covid-19 treatment.
Previously, there were two cases of Ivermectin poisoning as reported by the National Poison Centre (NPC) in 2021.
One case involved a 35-year-old man who took an Ivermectin pill while another senior citizen went unconscious after ingesting 15 Ivermectin pills.
According to NPC, Ivermectin poisoning can cause adverse effects such as vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and dizziness. Severe effects include low blood pressure, shortness of breath, lung damage, and death.
So far, there are no specific antidote or treatment for this case of poisoning.