There hasn’t been a whole lot of news about the Chris Leben drug suspension, partially because Chris Leben failing drug tests is barely news anymore and partially because painkiller addiction is kinda a taboo subject. Here’s Dr Johnny Benjamin talking with Mauro Ranallo about what exactly Chris was taking and what it means:
“The common names for those medications (that he got busted for) are Percosets and Dilaudid. These are some of the strongest and most addictive narcotic pain relievers that are on the market. They are derivatives of the Oxycontins and so on and so forth. Here in South Florida where I live, it’s wrecking havoc in this place. The problem is just that — their addictive potential is just off the charts.
“I read all the blog sites and everybody’s all caught up, is it a performance enhancer? It’s a banned substance, it’s not a performance-enhancing substance list, it’s a banned substance list. And this is a place where sports in general and MMA in specific are trying to look out for the well being of the fighters because getting on this type of medication, as anybody will tell you, is very, very, very hard to get off. I don’t call these types of medications, the opiates, the narcotics, the Dilaudids, performance enhancers. I call them performance enablers.”
“But if you need as something as strong as Dilaudid which we give to terminal cancer patients when you know they’re not going to live and you just want to make them comfortable at all costs, when you’re getting into that sort of thing then everybody needs to step back and say, hey, this is a sport. What we really need to talk about is the quality of your life and what’s going on.”
Holy shit. Holy shit. Holy shit.