Tulare County medical providers prescribing controversial ivermectin treatment

Ivermectin can be prescribed by doctors, but some have taken to livestock stores to get the drug without a prescription.

Dr. Daria Majzoubi, MD who owns Maj Medical Clinic in Visalia is currently prescribing Ivermectin to his patients. He refers to it as “an anecdotal treatment method.”

“I want to be completely clear, this treatment is not something someone should consider a cure, but they shouldn’t write it off completely. Getting the vaccine is still the best way to prevent death from the COVID-19 virus,” Dr. Majzoubi said.

Like many other physicians, Majzoubi uses what he calls “off label treatment” methods. This means he might prescribe a medication meant for one illness as a treatment for another.

“This happens all the time in doctors’ offices,” Majzoubi said.

Though more widely known as a medication for livestock, ivermectin is available by prescription in human dosages. The FDA warns physicians against prescribing the medication for COVID-19 but some doctors in the Central Valley praise it as a successful treatment method.

Majzoubi heard about other physicians prescribing the drug last fall, but remained skeptical due to the lack of research.

It wasn’t until an elderly patient took ivermectin and recovered from COVID that he considered adding it to his treatment method.

“I didn’t think he was going to recover in his condition, I was worried,” he said. The patient found ivermectin at a feed store and managed to doll out the proper dosage.

“That’s when I started doing research on the drug,” he said.

The medication is only useful within 48 hours of symptoms, Majzoubi said. He cited a study done by the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute, “ivermectin produced a 99.8% reduction in cell-associated viral RNA in cells infected with SARS-CoV-2 after 48 hours,” the study read.

“As long as my patients are safe, I’m going to do what I can. Prescribing this medication hasn’t harmed anyone. But, it hasn’t been completely effective either,” he said.

Depending on the circumstances when a patient with COVID comes to him, he might prescribe ivermectin, zinc, and sometimes a Z-Pack–which is used to treat a variety of  bacterial infections.

Majzoubi gave the same treatment of ivermectin, zinc, and a z-pack to two patients. One patient started the treatment within 48 hours of showing symptoms and fully recovered. The other had been experiencing symptoms for longer, and the treatment didn’t help him.

“When you have a pandemic running wild, you reach for whatever you can use, as long as it is safe,” he said.

But, about two months ago, he started receiving pushback from pharmacists, “they refused to fill the prescriptions I was writing on the basis that it was unsafe,” he said.

Sometimes this regimen works, sometimes it doesn’t, he said. He humbly admits that not all of his patients have stayed out of the hospital.

Majzoubi said ivermectin has been less effective when treating the delta variant. He doesn’t claim it as the best treatment for COVID-19 either.

 

“I came across it on the internet,” an anonymous Nurse Practitioner

A nurse practitioner in Visalia, who prefers to remain anonymous, has also seen full recovery from COVID patients who have taken ivermectin within the first 48 hours of showing coronavirus symptoms.

“I tell people 48 hours because once the second phase of COVID sets in, it can be deadly,” he said.

He learned about ivermectin while doing online research to see what treatment methods other doctors are using.

“Somebody in Australia figured out that ivermectin worked… among doctors and researchers it’s been known for a long time to work well on tropical viruses.”

He came across a treatment method from the Front Line Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC).

The FLCCC is a consortium of highly published critical care physicians and scholars — “they had a 60 page report with references,” he said.

The report laid the groundwork for how to treat COVID-19 with ivermectin, what to do and when to do it.

Like many physicians, this Nurse Practitioner is frustrated with how politicized the pandemic has become.

“I tell people, you can treat COVID with this if you catch it early on. And they say ‘well that’s your opinion,’” he said. “I say, no, that’s my experience since last year.”

This physician also commonly uses drugs off label. Ivermectin is not classified as an antiviral, “But we use lots of drugs off label. It is designed and approved to do this, but you know it’ll also have a good effect over here.

As long as the patient knows they will be taking an “off label” medication, there is nothing unethical about it, he said.

 

Self medicating

Over the last few months, ivermectin has built up more internet fame than the proven treatment of monoclonal antibody therapy.

It gained popularity among people looking for a home remedy and was promoted by conservative figures like Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson and Sen. Ron Johnson from Wisconsin.

Popular podcast host Joe Rogan, who has come out against the COVID vaccines, said that he is taking ivermectin — among other medications — after being infected with the virus.

The HuffPost reported, “The groups [promoting ivermectin] are largely used to share tips for how to procure ivermectin, often referring people to SpeakWithAnMD.com, a telemedicine platform propped up by right-wing, anti-vax group America’s Frontline Doctors.”

After seeing it online, people in the Central Valley started baking ivermectin paste into their favorite muffin recipes to test its efficacy.

One clerk at Tractor Supply in Tulare said ivermectin was “flying off the shelves.”

Other feed store clerks in Farmersville, Woodlake, and Strathmore said they noticed more people coming in to buy the medication, but weren’t sure if it was for personal or livestock use.

One clerk working at Strathmore Feed said some of his customers told him they were buying it for personal use, “we tell them it’s meant for horses,” he said.

On August 27, Tulare County Public Health Officials released a statement saying that self-administering “ivermectin meant for veterinary use can be especially dangerous.”

“It’s important to note, public health officials are receiving reports of people being admitted to the hospital that have been taking ivermectin prescribed by physicians, and they still end up in critical care,” Carrie Monterio, the public information officer for Tulare County Health and Human Services Agency said.

 

The perfect storm for a treatment method like ivermectin

The Central Valley provides fertile ground for doctors to prescribe ivermectin. With rising case counts and a large population of unvaccinated hosts, ivermectin gained popularity.

According to the Visalia Times Delta, Tulare County reported 1701 cases and 13 deaths in the latest week and 1094 cases and 13 deaths the week before.

This is in contrast to Marin County, in Northern California, which experienced a seven day average of 46 cases, according to the New York Times.

For some health care workers, this feels like the early days of the pandemic when they were scrambling to find treatment methods for the virus.

Dr. Majzoubi said he is constantly trying to refine his treatment method for coronavirus.

“I think part of the problem is that there is no treatment. Doctors are just trying to find something… you have to stay open minded,” he said.

24 thoughts on “Tulare County medical providers prescribing controversial ivermectin treatment

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  1. I grew up in Tulare, but for the last almost 30 years, have lived in the Imperial Valley. For much of the time of this pandemic, our county was the hottest spot in the country. Our hospitals were so full at times, that the medical transport helicopters were taking excess Covid patients to hospitals allover the state, 24/7. Many of these patients were dying, despite receiving the best care that was known at the time.
    Thankfully two of our Doctors, Dr. Fareed and Dr. Tyson began treating their patients early with Hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin, Z-packs, and zinc. They also use an inhaler containing a steroid. These two doctors have treated thousands of patients, and have not lost a single one (this includes numerous patients in their 90s, and many people who have one or more comorbidities. Both have also testified before Congress, trying to
    get the word out that this virus can be effectively treated. Since they had so much success with this treatment protocol, numerous other doctors in our area, Drs. Strong, Vo, Maloof, Suarez, PA Klockman and several others, are also using this regimen successfully. In a few stubborn cases, or where the
    patient delayed treatment, the above physicians will augment with monoclonal infusions. Most people are never even hospitalized who start this regimen early.
    It is too bad, and I wonder how many hundreds of thousands of our American citizens died, because this treatment was politicized? HCQ and Ivermectin are relatively safe medicines to take. Numerous friends of ours who have severe underlying conditions such as leukemia, heart and lung conditions, type I and II diabetes, etc. They all survived COVID-19 and experienced no adverse effects from the meds.
    Yes, I know Ivermectin is a livestock dewormer, as I have used it on my horses/swine/cattle, for decades. It is also used for lice and other parasitic infections of humans, allover the world. The same is true for the Hydroxychloroquine. It’s used as a treatment and prophylactic for malaria. In countries where there is malaria, tape worms, and the like, these drugs are OTC.
    Again, the sad part of this whole thing has been how this treatment has been vilified. Articles like your’s who talk about the one person who went into a feed store to buy Ivermectin, makes all of us who espouse the treatment sound like a bunch of hayseed hicks. Please realize the vast majority of us agriculturalists are not ill educated, or gullibly misinformed. We read all the evidence, weigh the pros and cons of our own medical decisions. I don’t know anyone who has self medicated themselves, but all our friends and relatives who did their own research, and sought out doctors who would prescribe the regimen, if their own would not, have survived their bout with Covid. Many of them only experienced mild flu/cold like symptoms, because they got tested as soon as they had the symptoms, and started the meds early.
    I hope others who read this, will do the same. People don’t need to die from this, nor is it necessary to close schools, businesses and residents. This virus can be effectively treated!

    • Hydroxychloroquine has side effects that’s why it’s not approved. Your reasoning is based on fallacy. Those patients didn’t have huge reaction to Covid as fast as many others. Those badly effected by Covid doesn’t have time to see a doctor. And yes those in agriculturist are ignorant in medical terms. Dumb RETARDICAN hicks

    • June 15, 2020 Update: Based on ongoing analysis and emerging scientific data, FDA has revoked the emergency use authorization (EUA) to use hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine to treat COVID-19 in certain hospitalized patients when a clinical trial is unavailable or participation is not feasible. We made this determination based on recent results from a large, randomized clinical trial in hospitalized patients that found these medicines showed no benefit for decreasing the likelihood of death or speeding recovery. This outcome was consistent with other new data, including those showing the suggested dosing for these medicines are unlikely to kill or inhibit the virus that causes COVID-19

  2. Wow RETARDICANS really are dumb hicks. They will take horse medicine but won’t get vaccine. Pathetic conspiracy theorist just like that politician that tweeted about Jewish controlled space lasers

  3. I wonder how many of you (I assume Democrats) are actually board certified physicians who have been successfully treating this virus, for the last year and a half. I suspect not.
    Btw, I am not an agriculturalist. We just have some livestock for personal enjoyment and projects. I am a professor of Fine Art and Design, at our local community college, my husband is a retired printing and graphic art instructor. So, for one, we are not uneducated, two, how do you know what political party we are affiliated with?Me thinks thou have all jumped to many conclusions. Be well, and if your vaccine loses its effectiveness, I would recommend going to this doctor mentioned in the article, and getting treatment ASAP.
    Peace out and be well!

  4. Invermectin is a proven human medicine. If you have worms.

    Yes, Invermectin can kill viruses in a culture plate.

    The problem is that the dose that will do the same inside your body will make you go blind or severely damage your liver, if not kill you.

    Why are people taking medical advice from those who continue to maintain that COVID isn’t dangerous, and have argued all sorts of self-contradictory nonsense for over a year?

  5. I’m surprised at how many dummies there are here. Likely older folk that don’t know any better. If you can’t do your own research on a nobel prize winning drug then it’s ok to say “I don’t know.” Stop parroting mainstream media.

  6. VALLEY VOICE CENSORS AND IS RAN BY RETARDICANS THAT ARE NOT PRO LIFE. RETARDICANS PUT BUSINESS PROFITS OVER US CITIZEN LIVES!!

    • Troy – we removed the eight comments you left on this article between 5:21 and 5:27AM on Sep. 11 because they were way out of line compared to the rest of the comments in this article.

      Wasn’t cool! No one else here was popping off like that.

      • WAY OUT OF LINE! IN YOUR EYES! PROOF OF CENSORSHIP! I USED NO CURSE WORDS! FREEDOM OF SPEECH! RETARDICANS ARE NOT COOL! THEY KEEP LYING ABOUT BEING PEO LIFE! THEY KEEP LOSING! LMAO. HAVE FUN BEING A FAKE NEWS SOURCE!!

      • No one else in this thread was telling people they were going to hell when they die and (in another comment) that they would laugh after “[they] all died,” so I’m gonna say that’s way out of line; but, go off, I guess.

        We have the right to moderate comments here — this is a privately owned and operated website and newspaper — but do so with a light touch. I just looked and yours were the first comments you’ve made that we’ve ever removed.

        • So if everyone does something I need to follow? Where’s the terms and conditions? Who makes this call? It’s an opinion. I laugh when stupidity causes action. Clearly singling me out.

  7. Where’s all the post about Newsom winning his election and how the special election cost FRESNO COUNTY 4 MILLION DOLLARS. BET YOU WON’T REPORT ON THAT

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