Monaldi Arch Chest Dis. 2022 Jan 18. doi: 10.4081/monaldi.2022.2062. Online ahead of print.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to mortality and morbidity since December 2019. Many possible treatment options have been advised till date. The role of ivermectin in the treatment of COVID-19 disease remains controversial. The aim of our study was to evaluate the effect of ivermectin in hospitalized patients with non-severe and severe COVID-19 disease. We conducted a retrospective cohort study that compared outcomes in 2 groups of COVID-19 patients hospitalized at the largest tertiary care center of Pakistan. The study group was given ivermectin along with standard treatment of covid-19 disease; the comparison group was not. Data on mortality, inflammatory markers such as C-reactive protein (CRP) and ferritin, length of hospital stay and baseline characteristics were collected from Aga Khan University's database from October 2020 till February 2021. Statistical analysis was done to determine the effectiveness of ivermectin in non-severe and severe COVID-19. Comparison of effectiveness of Ivermectin in both the genders was also conducted. The cohort included 188 patients out of which 90 were treated with ivermectin. Mortality and length of hospitalization was not found to be significantly different in the study group compared with the control group (5.6% vs 5.1%; p=0.87 and 5 days vs 4 days; p=0.27). Analysis of secondary outcomes did not yield statistically significant results, apart from ferritin levels which were significantly less in patients treated with ivermectin (547.1 vs 756.7; p=0.03). The ferritin and CRP levels in affected males were higher than in females on admission and discharge. Our findings suggest ivermectin does not significantly affect all-cause mortality, length of hospitalization and CRP levels in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Large scale randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are required to further evaluate the role of ivermectin in covid-19 disease.