Putting lots and lots of cocaine into your body is already generally considered a bad idea, but one man took so much cocaine he ended up in Mater Dei after he reportedly felt that the white powder was literally eating his brain away.
Talk about a bad trip.
A team of Maltese doctors discovered that the man had developed a rare but severe side-effect of taking cocaine
The man was taken to hospital by his parents after taking cocaine two or three days prior. He had been acting confused and “behaving bizarrely” for days, and was “not cooperative, unable to perform simple tasks and was not following commands.”
Soon enough, Maltese doctors realised he was suffering from cocaine-induced toxic leukoencephalopathy, a condition that progressively gets worse and is often fatal.
“It’s a rare disorder which can cause significant disability,” one of the doctors who treated the man said. “The prognosis is generally poor and can be rapidly fatal, however, some rare cases recover fully, as is seen in this case report. This case study is intended to increase awareness of this condition.”
The man, who is a regular cocaine user, became catatonic and spent two weeks under treatment
He was treated for anxiety, transfered to a rehab centre and allowed to go home after about one month. After four months, he was able to walk again, and living independently day to day.
One year after the incident, he was brought back in for a follow-up assessment, where his brain continued to show “persistent white matter changes”, but his neurological tests were normal.
“Apart from some complaints of low mood, he was fully independent and had returned to his previous functional status,” the doctor noted.
The medical was able to report a positive turnaround for the man, saying: “rarely has it been reported to result in complete recovery, as in our case.”