In an earlier post, I wrote about the FDA trying to stamp out the practice of some people using the livestock deworming drug ivermectin as a Covid-19 treatment. We have even reached a stage where people are going to court to force hospitals to provide it to patients.
When there is a matter of urgency like covid-19, a lot of exploratory research is done on treatments, using small samples or on animals or in petri dishes. In the age of the internet, the results of such studies can become widely known and people can seize on any positive information and think that the treatment should be freely used, even if there is the potential for danger. In the case of ivermectin, it has not yet been shown to be an effective treatment against the virus and can be dangerous in large doses. Preliminary results showed no appreciable efficacy.