Joe Rogan, the multimillionaire Austin podcaster who has been a vocal COVID-19 vaccination skeptic, says a controversial anti-parasite drug is part of his treatment regimen after testing positive for the virus that causes COVID-19.
Rogan announced the COVID-19 diagnosis September 1 in an Instagram video. He said he tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 after headlining a series of comedy shows in Florida.
The 54-year-old Rogan, who left California last year and moved into a $14.4 million Lake Austin mansion, told his millions of podcast listeners in April that young, healthy people shouldn’t worry about getting COVID-19 shots. After tremendous blowback, Rogan softened his stance.
“I’m not an anti-vax person. In fact, I said I believe they’re safe, and I encourage many people to take them. My parents were vaccinated,” Rogan later explained on his podcast. “I just said I don’t think that if you’re a young, healthy person that you need it.”
Rogan also has criticized vaccine passports, which require proof of COVID-19 vaccination, as being a step toward dictatorship.
In the Instagram video, Rogan said he began feeling ill the night of August 28 following performances in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, and Tampa.
“Throughout the night I got fevers, sweats, and I knew what was going on,” Rogan said on the video, which had been viewed more than 4.8 million times as of the early morning on September 2.
Rogan said a COVID-19 test he took the morning after returning from Florida was positive. His is now one of the more than 39.2 million COVID-19 cases reported in the U.S. since the onset last year of the pandemic.
The podcaster, comedian, and UFC commentator said he was being treated with several remedies, including ivermectin.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned Americans not to take the drug for treatment of COVID-19. U.S. veterinarians often prescribe large doses of ivermectin to kill parasites in horses, cows, and other animals. Ivermectin also is prescribed to humans, but less frequently and in lower doses.
The FDA says ivermectin hasn’t proven to be effective in treating COVID-19 and can actually cause other health problems.
Dr. Gerald Parker, associate dean of Texas A&M University’s College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, says it’s dangerous for people to take ivermectin tablets meant for animals as a COVID-19 treatment.
“Ivermectin is approved for use in people, but only in the case of very specific parasitic diseases,” Parker says. “The products meant for animals have different ingredients and have a larger concentration of the active ingredient that could be dangerous to a human.”
Aside from ivermectin, Rogan mentioned being treated with monoclonal antibodies, which are lab-made, FDA-approved proteins that fight viruses; prednisone, a steroid; a vitamin drip; and a NAD drip, a medically questionable COVID-19 treatment that supposedly boosts immunity.
“A wonderful heartfelt thank you to modern medicine for pulling me out of this so quickly and easily,” he said on the video.
Rogan said he isolated himself from his family, presumably at his lakeside mansion, after suspecting he had contracted COVID-19. On September 1, Rogan said he “felt great” after feeling “very weary” and rundown, and after suffering a headache.
Rogan’s Florida appearances were part of his national Joe Rogan: The Sacred Clown Tour. In recent weeks, the Sunshine State has experienced a significant spike in COVID-19 cases and deaths. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis — like his Texas counterpart, Gov. Greg Abbott — has steadfastly opposed mask and vaccination mandates.
Rogan was set to perform September 3 with comedian Dave Chappelle in Nashville, Tennessee, but that show has been postponed until October 24.