A study coordinated by educational and health institutions in Nigeria evaluated the effects of treatment with ivermectin in patients with onchocerciasis (chronic parasitic disease) on sperm production and function. In addition to not being effective for the treatment of COVID-19, ivermectin also significantly reduces sperm count and motility (ability to move) and leads to morphological abnormalities such as double heads and tails, huge heads, and albino sperm. A total of 385 Nigerians diagnosed with onchocerciasis participated in the study. Of these, 37 (9.6%) were eligible for further testing as their sperm counts were normal, while the remaining patients had very low levels of sperm counts and therefore were not eligible for further testing.
Thus, the research cut was directed to this group of 37 patients, aged between 28 and 57 years. Sperm functions were assessed by means of seminal fluid analysis. Patients were treated with ivermectin for 11 months.
The results also suggest a possible interference with male fertility. The researchers also recommend further studies to see if ivermectin also causes adverse effects in other organs, such as the heart, liver, kidney and lungs.