I am the good guy. I do not search for an adrenaline rush, I always take my medication as told and most importantly I do not do drugs. I just want to live and discover the great experiences that make life worth living. Unfortunately, life does not seem so fair when your car gets smashed into a tree just because another driver felt like regular driving was a boring experience. They barely managed to get me out of the car when it exploded and the ambulance doctor looked extremely worried. They did not know if I was going to survive and rushed me to the hospital at once.
Diagnosis: broken legs, double fracture with severe laceration of the muscles, dislocated shoulder and head trauma (gravity unknown). That sounds pretty bad, doesn’t it? Well, after three or four medical interventions I was sent to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and the doctors told my parents to pray. They were extremely reserved and did not want my mum and dad to gain false hopes; they preferred to be realistic. I spent two weeks in the ICU without giving any sign of recovery but my parents did not lose their hope. When I opened my eyes and asked for them, they instantly knew that I was going to be fine.
There was still no hope for me to get out of bed as my legs were still immobilized and they were going to remain that way for another 2 months. The shoulder recuperated much more quickly and in the meantime I was given a medication for the pain called Tramadol. Back then, it was a new thing for me, taking an opiate drug for the incessant pain and I said yes without even taking into consideration the seriousness of such a decision. At first, I was given the lowest dose possible and the doctor increased it gradually over the course of the next days, allowing me to feel a little bit rested and calm. He took his time to explain to me all the adverse reactions that are likely to appear, including things like nausea, sweating or trembling but he did not mention a single word about dependence.
When my legs recovered their integrity, I was released from the hospital and send to a private medical clinic specialized in medical rehabilitation. Here, I underwent an intense recovery program under the careful supervision of two very good doctors and three therapists. They all considered my case to be an extremely lucky one and worked really hard to help me recover. The first time I arrived at the clinic I was asked to present my medical chart and the doctor was intrigued of the inclusion of Tramadol. He immediately asked me if I knew that Tramadol was an opioid analgesic, one that can cause both physical and mental addiction. My answer was of course, negative. I did not know and did not want to think about such things. I only wanted to be like I was before the accident and start afresh.
We talked about how patients become addicted to Tramadol and develop an abnormal obsession for the medication, being desperate when the drug is not available. He explained that these persons are more likely to overdose as they feel the increased need to take more and more Tramadol, experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms (anxiety, irritability and hallucinations just to name a few) when the treatment is suddenly stopped or they fail to purchase the medication. He mentioned that as long as I stay in the clinic the treatment with Tramadol will continue but the dosage will be reduced every day, allowing my body to deal with pain on its own. Months passed by quickly and I learned to walk again using assisting devices. My legs usually hurt after intensive practice but other from that they were alright. The last time I took Tramadol was 6 months ago with just one week before I left the clinic. It does not hurt me anymore and I am extremely glad that I was able to overcome this whole experience, remembering once more that there is no better adrenaline rush than being alive and well!