Complete Medication List While Treating COVID at Home
|Over the Counter||Prescription Meds||Vitamins & Supplements|
|Benadryl as needed||Albuterol inhaler as needed||Vitamin C|
|Claritin daily||Albuterol nebulizer as needed||Vitamin D|
|Pepcid twice/day||Azithromycin/z pack x 5 days||Zinc|
325 mg AM
81 mg PM – start wk 2
|Ivermectin 1.87% paste||Melatonin|
|Incentive Spirometer||Valerian root (liquid form)|
|Ivermectin was experimental|
How to Treat COVID Symptoms at Home
My first symptom was facial swelling, so I treated it as an allergic reaction. Now, I realize this is exactly how you should treat this illness. COVID triggers a hyperimmune response causing inflammation and this is responsible for the symptoms. Benadryl, Pepcid, and Claritin were my best friends along the journey. 100% take Pepcid, it was astonishing how rapidly my condition deteriorated when I stopped for one day. All of these are over the counter meds you can get almost anywhere.
For all the details of my day by day COVID treatment check out my daily blog posts. This is a concise version for a quick reference.
What Other OTC Meds and Treatment Helped Treat COVID
If something is attacking your lungs, you need to keep them strong. You can get an incentive spirometer (IS) online at amazon or a local drug store (Walgreens, CVS, etc). Suck on it like a straw and it will help keep your alveoli open, improving oxygenation and helping you breathe better.
A lot of patients come into the Emergency Department (ED) feeling short of breath but feel like they are OK, but their pulse oximeter reading is much lower than anticipated. What is a good pulse oximeter reading? If your reading drops to 92% or less, go to the ED. Mine was consistently 98%, even when I felt short of breath and my chest was on fire.
- Sit up and hold the device.
- Place the mouthpiece in your mouth making a good seal with your lips.
- Breathe out (exhale) normally.
- Breathe in (inhale) SLOWLY. A piece (piston) inside the incentive spirometer will rise as you breathe in.
- Try to get this piece to rise as high as you can, once it reaches your goal marker, hold your breath as long as you can. A good goal = try to reach 2500+
- A smaller floating piece will rise with your inhale, try to keep this piece in the middle of the chamber while you breathe in. Too fast, the ball shoots to the top. Too slowly, the ball stays at the bottom.
Preventing Blood Clots with OTC Meds at Home
The recent Science Translational Medicine publication (Nov 2020) revealed that approximately 50% of people get blood clots with COVID. YIKES! Take your Aspirin. I started 325mg Aspirin every AM. As my symptoms progressed and I became increasingly concerned about the consequences of the hyperimmune response, I added an evening dose of 81mg Aspirin. Blood clots are one of the main causes of death with COVID, especially in younger patients. The clots themselves are problematic, but they can lead to a pulmonary embolus, stroke, or even need a limb amputation as a consequence. It is serious! The antibodies causing blood clots do not disappear immediately after you recover from COVID. At this time, we do not know how long they stay around, but I am taking 325mg Aspirin for a full 30 days after recovery.
Vitamins & Supplements to Help My Body Fight COVID
Vitamin C, D, Zinc, and Lysine are all immune boosters. Zinc is known to shorten the length of a cold and decrease COVID symptoms severity. Lysine has the added benefit of acting as an antiviral. I ate fresh pineapples in an attempt to decrease the inflammation in my body. With a virus this potent, I am not sure how impactful it was, but it can not hurt you. The bromelain in pineapple has anti-inflammatory effects. The steroids made it difficult to sleep, so I used 9mg Melatonin and liquid Valerian Root at night to help me sleep.
Prescription Meds to Treat Covid at Home
At the peak of my symptoms, I added Azithromycin, a full 5-day z pack, because of the promising research showing antiviral effects with COVID and other viruses. On this same day, I started Flonase and Prednisone. Hindsight is 20/20, but looking back, I do not believe Flonase was beneficial so I did not even include it in the list above. At this point, I was treating COVID like I would treat a respiratory infection or the flu, but it does not operate the same. COVID creates a hyperimmune response.
I took my albuterol inhaler and Prednisone to control the chest burning. The inhaler and Pepcid were very effective in treating the chest burning after I completed the steroids. Prednisone is a steroid that helps decrease inflammation and tames the hyperimmune response. I used an albuterol nebulizer intermittently to help keep my airways open and relieve my shortness of breath.
My Experimental Treatment Using Ivermectin for COVID
Ivermectin is an anti-parasitic agent with antiviral effects for COVID. After stopping Pepcid for a single day I felt horrible and I developed a COVID rash on my abdomen. Why did this happen? Pepcid is an antihistamine agent, so it helps stop the hyperimmune response. The rash did not respond to Benadryl or hydrocortisone cream. While applying hydrocortisone cream, my rash was continuing to spread. Frustrating to say the least. I knew about the promising research using Ivermectin effectively for COVID and Ivermectin paste is used safely for rosacea treatment. I decided to give it a try.
I applied Ivermectin to my abdomen for the rash and took it orally at the recommended dose based on my body weight. My energy drastically improved, the rash was disappearing, and I felt like my old self within 48 hours. I felt safe using Ivermectin topically and I did experience improved energy levels this way. I can not recommend anyone to take this medication orally. I did this on my own. Please consider, I have 3 years of doctorate-level anesthesia training. I was trained on how to administer medications based on a patient’s weight. If you are interested in taking this medication orally, they do offer it as a prescription pill. Ask your primary care for a script.
For more details about my experience with Ivermectin check out my post with all the details.
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