“If you take it, you will not get sick,” an ivermectin-boosting physician told a Senate committee in December, describing it as a “wonder drug” and citing in part the trial “from Argentina.”
But there are signs that at least some of the experiments — as written up in a paper published in November — didn’t happen as advertised. After BuzzFeed News raised questions about how the study’s data was collected and analyzed, a representative from the Journal of Biomedical Research and Clinical Investigation, which published the results, said late Monday, “We will remove the paper temporarily.” A link was removed from the table of contents — but was reinstated by Thursday. The journal’s explanation, provided after this story was published, was that the author “informed us that he has already provided the evidence of his study to the media.”
The numbers, genders, and ages of the study’s participants were inconsistent. A hospital named in the paper as taking part in the experiments said it has no record of it happening. Health officials in the province of Buenos Aires have also said that they also have no record of the study receiving local approval.
And the researcher overseeing the project, Hector Carvallo, a retired endocrinologist and professor of internal medicine at the University of Buenos Aires, has declined to widely share his data — including with one of his own collaborators, emails show.
In short, independent experts told BuzzFeed News, the oft-cited study has so many red flags that it is, at best, unreliable.
“There is no way in which I could see a trial that actually occurred producing a pattern like this,” said Kyle Sheldrick, a doctor in Sydney and one of the critics who brought the study’s discrepancies to light.
Carvallo, 64, said the study was real. “We would never make up a study because it’s not ethical,” he told BuzzFeed News.