Despite rumors, there's no proof ibuprofen makes COVID-19 worse

By BYron Beers

Mild symptoms of COVID-19 - fever and coughing - can be similar to a common cold, and common medications can be used by those who are "sheltering at home."

Acetaminophen (Tylenol), which can limit headaches, body aches and fever, is the most useful recommendation. The use of ibuprofen, such as Advil, has raised concerns, although medical experts say there's no evidence it can be harmful.

"There's not a lot of medicines that are over the counter that just help," said a spokesperson at Reasor's Pharmacy in Tahlequah. "They're still trying to figure out what prescription medicines are helpful. There's a lot of anecdotal evidence, but nothing really proved. I think if you take a gander at the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] website, you'll see basically what they're recommending is to wash your hands frequently with soap and water."

The alternative for ibuprofen is Tylenol, the pharmacy staffer said.

"But that's really just symptomatic relief. It's not a ton of help," the staffer said.

According to Dr. Larry Burchett, a California emergency physician, 650 milligrams of acetaminophen every four to six hours is a safe dosage for most adults.

Vitamin C, fresh fruits, vegetables and canned goods can also be useful. Other supplies that can be useful include a thermometer, cough medicines, tissues and zinc.

Cooling blankets, ice packs and over-the-counter medications are methods of treatment, according to Dr. Joshua Mansour, clinical oncologist with the Southern California Permanente Medical Group, in Healthline.

It has been reported that 80 percent of the COVID-19 cases worldwide are mild.

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