HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon and member of the White House coronavirus task force said he took Oleander extract to treat his COVID symptoms.
The unproven treatment, which was rejected by the FDA, was floated by MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell in August. Lindell is on the board of Phoenix Biotechnology, the company that manufactures the supplement and would benefit financially from the product.
Carson told the Washington Post that his symptoms disappeared within hours after taking Oleandrin, the supplement extracted from the Oleander plant.
Carson was not always on board with Lindell’s suggestion. In August he told ABC news that Lindell is a “fantastic salesman but not a scientist.”
Neither Oleander extract nor the Oleander plant is a proven treatment for COVID. Accidentally ingesting a small amount can be fatal.
When the FDA rejected Phoenix Biotechnology’s application, the agency said the company did not provide enough evidence that it is safe. There are not any peer-reviewed studies showing it is an effective coronavirus treatment.