Recovering addict: 'Naloxone saved my life more than once'

Addict saved by naloxone 6 times tells his story

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- It’s been years since Fritz Ruhl last overdosed on heroin, but he still remembers how it felt coming back to life

“It was the worst feeling I've ever had in my life,” he explained how naloxone, the antidote that reverses overdoses, brought him through an immediate detox that included cold sweats, and sometimes vomiting. 

“To throw you through instant withdrawal like that, and pretty much just saving your life, like that lifeline, it's pretty insane.”

After overdosing six times, Fritz decided it was time for a change and got sober in July of 2015.  Thursday night, he shared his story to a group at Landmark Recovery of Louisville

“I just sort of got into doing drugs when I was high school,” he told the group who were there to learn how to use naloxone on those who are overdosing.

Treatments like naloxone can cost $37 to $38 a dose.  While Louisville is in the middle of a heroin crisis, some said the money means nothing.

“I say why do we save people?  Cause everybody deserves to live, it's not our place to judge when somebody is in trouble,” said the woman teaching the naloxone training. 

For Fritz, the money spent meant everything.

“I thank God that I did get saved by Narcan,” he explained.

Landmark Recovery of Louisville, where the training took place, is a new treatment center.  It opened in September with room for 16 patients.  A new facility is expected to open at the end of April with room for 16 more patients.   

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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