Although toxicology results are still days, maybe weeks, away, more stories of Prince’s alleged prescription drug abuse are bubbling up. Nothing has been proven about anything, but the smoke is definitely getting thicker.
The Daily Mail has an interview with Doctor D, who claims to be Prince’s former drug dealer. Between 1984 and 2008, he claims that Prince was a regular customer, sometimes buying as much as $40,000 worth of prescription drugs at a time. His big purchases? Dilaudid pills (a powerful opioid painkiller) and Fentanyl patches (another opioid painkiller, the drug that’s been in the news this year as the cause of death of hundreds of people across Western Canada because it’s up to 100 x more powerful than morphine and up to 50 x more potent than heroin.)
Doctor D claims that Prince was “majorly addicted” and used the drugs for his chronic hip pain and to help him overcome crippling stage fright.
“He was always a pill man,” the Daily Mail quotes him as saying, “That’s why nobody ever saw him do drugs. He never shot up, or snorted cocaine….He would wear the patch was well as taking the Dilaudid, so it’s the equivalent of smoking while you have a nicotine patch on.”
If this is true, Prince’s past behavior could explain what killed him last week. Doctor D believes the theory of a Percocet overdose. “The problem with Percocet is that it is an opiate mixed with Tylenol – but he would have been taking much more than the recommended dose because he had developed a tolerance to opiates over the years…When you take that much Tylenol it can cause major problems – especially with your kidneys…But doctors would have freaked out if they knew the extent of Prince’s drug problem and wouldn’t know what to do.
He continues: “So perversely the doctors who thought they were helping him may have hurt him by prescribing Percocet. Also, if they did have to give him a save shot when he overdosed like everybody is saying – that removes all traces of drugs from your system so he would have started to go into withdrawal and would have had to take a lot of drugs to feel okay again – which also could have killed him. You can’t just stop taking these drugs when you have taken them for so long. But without knowing his drug history doctors wouldn’t have known that. It explains why he was spotted looking nervous and pacing around at the pharmacy in the week before his death.”
Philly.com connects a few more dots:
But if Prince did get an injection of naloxone [Narcan], it could have put him at risk if he had been abusing an opioid and went back to the drug.
Blocking the opioid receptors by using naloxone can save someone’s life. But if the user then abstains for a few days and starts taking an opioid again at his previous high dosage, the brain “would no longer have tolerance,” [Deni] Carise, chief clinical officer for King of Prussia-based Recovery Centers of America.. “That is a very high-risk time.”
Cyril Wecht, an American forensic pathologist (Kennedy assassination buffs will know the name), said to NBC “I would give overwhelming odds that, tragically, this is a drug death…When you rule out foul play, when there is no history of any kind of significant disease, when you rule out any kind of intervention, anything of an environmental nature, you come down to an autopsy that is essentially negative and that probably means drugs.”
When asked about the emergency landing of Prince’s private jet on Friday “‘I cannot think of any medical or pathological condition that fits that kind of scenario, with incredible ups and downs, other than drugs.”
One more rumour: Prince was awake for 154 straight hours before he died. Insomnia can be a problem with Percocet addiction if the drug is mixed with other medications.
The big question: If prescription drugs were involved in Prince’s death, was there a a doctor who was willing to write all the scripts?
Read the entire Daily Mail story here.