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Dr. Drew -- Conaway Did NOT Die From an Overdose

5/27/2011 2:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Despite widespread reports, "Grease" star Jeff Conaway did NOT die from a drug overdose -- but rather his body gave out after long-term prescription drug abuse ... this according to Dr. Drew.

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Drew -- who treated Conaway on "Celebrity Rehab" -- tells us there is no evidence showing Jeff died from an overdose ... saying, "This was aspiration with overwhelming pneumonia and sepsis."

Drew tells us Jeff's condition was inevitable because the actor had been a serious pill popper for years and the constant substance abuse wore down his body.

Drew explains, "Jeff is another pharmaceutical death from the overutilization of prescription drugs. Please continue to pray for friends and family. They appreciate your support.”

241 COMMENTS

No Avatar
226.

Mark     

Good bye you loser! lol

1220 days ago
227.

lili    

People hold Dr Drew somewhat responsible because his show puts celebrities with massive egos and drug problems in the same room, on national television. THese people already have huge egos. They they are on television exposing their issues, sometimes manipulating viewers with their ACTING SKILLS and their real goals of sobriety are shrouded with their aim to MAKE $$$$$$$$$.

So you have drug riddled has beens being PAID to discuss their issues, but as we have seen their motives are often insincere. Drew's rehab is UNNACCEPTABLY SHORT. THen he gives out a diploma, please.

These celebs are constantly seen seeking out their drugs and resisting the short rehab bc half of them are also in it for the FAME.

1220 days ago
228.

jt81nicola    

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1220 days ago
229.

Marvin     

Drew sucks.

1220 days ago
230.

Wazoo    

Jeff did die from COMPLICATIONS due to drugs, and many OD episodes in the past. OK, may be this one was not an OD, but I don't recall Drew being the coroner, so it is only his speculation, and because he has vested interest, a reason to deny it being an OD.

1220 days ago
231.

moderniste    

I don't see why so many people are piling on Dr. Drew. Afer watching him on his own talk show and Celebrity Rehab, he seems uniquely educated about the Celebrity Experience and how to treat these most difficult of substance abuse patients.

Dr. Drew has always seemed genuinely empathetic and caring, while willing to be strict with his patients who were used to entourages of yes-men hangers-on and the insulating bubble of fame and money. Jeff Conaway in particular was a very difficult patient during his last appearance on Celebrity Rehab, and was already looking deathly sick and weak.

@Ronald Peterson, you especially should not be calling the kettle black. You allege misdeed after misdeed like the plot to a True Crime--oh wait, that's right, you're using the comments section to sell your stupid effing screenplay. TACKY!!!

1220 days ago
232.

real chick    

Dr.Drew should take his rehab show off of t.v so that the people on his show can get the help that they need with out ratings and money being involved.there is nothing wrong with getting help for a drug problem but the way they are going about is wrong every thing today seems to be about money and ratings

1220 days ago
233.

Kathryn Damron    


This dear creature was unable to overcome his disease and died of alcoholism. Very, very tragic.

My sympathies to his family and those that suffered along with him.

Dr. Drew needs Al-Anon.

Recovery begins with the truth....Please.

1220 days ago
234.

Brid    

I so agree with Chris and Writenow - Dr Drew is like Senator Chuck Schumer here in New York. They both love the limelight! If Dr. Drew was not on camera, he more than likely would not give a s--t about those people! I can't stand the sight of you, Dr Drew!!

1220 days ago
235.

Jackson    

Calling drug addiction a disease is disrespectful to people with real diseases like Cancer, MS and Diabetes.

In my opinion, drug addicts are just weak people who don't care who they hurt.

1220 days ago
236.

Mickey Markoff    

Sad to see him end this way. So many tragic ends to comedians and entertainers. IMO, the drugs had nothing to do with it; self-destructive people destroy themselves with whatever is handy, it seems. It could as easily have been from alcohol or nicotine abuse.

RIP, Bobby Wheeler!

1219 days ago
237.

Katie    

So you put up a picture of Jeff while he's blinking to make him look f*kkd up??? Really?

1218 days ago
238.

rozmill    

All of you who want to blame Dr. Drew for exploiting Jeff Conaway are way off base. Dr. Drew is a man who is dealing with one of the most horrible sicknesses this country has ever seen, DRUG ADDICTION and is trying his best to find an answer for DRUG ADDICTS. Yes, he does it on TV, but where else would be a better place to show the insanity of Drug Addiction, Drug Addicts, and Drug Treatment. Maybe there just might be someone out there who gets helped by watching or gets turned off to drugs by watching. Everyone who is on the show, comes on of their own accord. They aren't forced and they certainly not exploited. They got themselves into the insanity of the drugs and they want help. Whether or not they are willing to do what needs to be done to help themselves is on them. Dr. Drew nor anybody else in the field of addiction, nor any 12 step program can help somebody who doesn't want to help themselves first. Maybe the show turns some people off, well don't watch it. I also agree that the show can be a little over the top sometimes, but so is addiction. This is a sickness that is every bit as lethal as cancer, heart disease or AIDS. It affects every sector of our society. There isn't to many families in this country today that hasn't been affected by alcohol or drug addiction. Alot of the reason that drug addicts are looked down upon is because this is something they bring on themselves. Which in most cases is true, but the bitter truth of the matter is that most people start out using drugs recreationally, but for most addicts, this is the point where the addiction sets in and over time, consumes more and more of their lives and health. This is the point of no return for most. The body takes on not only a physical dependence, but also a psychological dependence. Most people find themselves in a full blown addiction in a relatively short matter of time. Denial of the addiction is what keeps alot of addicts from seeking help and the addiction keeps getting worse. If an addict is lucky enough to make it to get help or into a rehab, he may have a chance at recovery, however, most addicts relapse at least once and some addicts die. I lived through a horrible heroin addiction and I have been in recovery for 5 years, but it took me several painful relapses before I finally got clean. I must be vigilant about my drug addiction every day of my life. All it would take to get me using drugs again is to go use just one time. That would turn the spigot back on and I would relapse immediately. I've done that several times, so I know what I'm talking about. I say hooray to Dr. Drew. I think he deserves accolades instead of boo's!!!

1218 days ago
239.

susan    

Dr. Drew is just wonderful

1162 days ago
240.

RICK CHAVEZ, M.D.    

Unfortunately, Mr. Conaway was mistreated in Dr. Drew's facility. Rather than assume that he didn't have chronic pain, Dr. Drew failed to recognize the Jeff Conaway was a chronic pain patient who suffered with chronic pain. He should have been placed on Buprenorphine to control his pain as well as his craving for opioid analgesics. I have treated greater than 1200 chronic pain patients who are addicted or dependent on opioid analgesics. These individuals need aggressive treatment to manage their pain in order to help them get off of doctor prescribed opiates and have their pain controlled as well. The sad thing is that the dr Drew show needs the drama of watching people withdraw off of opiates and suffer live on TV. No one needs to suffer and opiate addiction is the easiest of all addictions to treat with the medications we have today. Pain patients do the best. We can give these suffering individuals back their lives without suffering and without getting high. No one dies from Buprenorphine treatment. The narrow minded attitude of individuals regarding the use of medications to treat addiction is the main problem in helping people like Jeff Conaway. Imagine being able to get help with your addiction and not having to suffer with withdrawal. Get maximum benefit from the program because you will think clearly without craving. The problem is that Dr. Drew has never been addicted so he doesn't really understand what it means to be addicted. You can't just toughen up and use willpower. It is very naive to think that someone who has been on large amounts of opiates for years and who suffers with severe chronic pain is going to be able to stop all opiates and get anything out of a rehab program.

Almost 80 to 90 % of all addicts relapse. We spend billions of dollars on rehab centers and our results are dismal. This is the 21 st century and there are better ways to treat addiction today. Would you go to a hospital where 80% of patients with cardiac disorders leave the hospital and fail their treatment? No, of course not. The money that rehab units make does not allow for change in a system that profits from failure. Methadone clinics are equally as bad. The major methadone clinics are owned by corporate America and the profits are too immense to change. Methadone is one of the most dangerous drugs around. It is harder to get off of then heroin!! The profits are ADDICTING.

METHADONE IS NOT BUPRENORPHINE. SEE MY YOUTUBE VIDES "2 PART PROGRAM ON SUBOXONE THERAPY KCAL CHANNEL 9" by RICK CHAVEZ, M.D.

If there is anyone addicted to opiates, listen to me, you can be treated easily and effectively with very little suffering due to withdrawal. I realize that it's hard to believe, and people like DR. Drew will not acknowledge it. I treat addicts every week and I am always so thrilled when I help someone get off of opiates and they are astonished with how easy it was and how their craving for opiates is gone. The average dose of buprenorphine is 4 mg sublingual 4 times daily and it never goes up. All craving is gone and the person feels normal. you simply can't get high on doctor prescribed doses of buprenorphine. In fact, buprenorphine is safer than motrin or aleve.

You wouldn't treat diabetes, hypertension, depression, or any other disease without medications, so why would you treat the disease of addiction any differently. Typically, someone who has closed their mind to new therapies or have been sold on the fact that there is no other way to treat addiction other than the AA or NA way. To these individuals AA and NA have become a religion and they will refuse to believe that other approaches to treating addiction are possible and often successful. Don't get me wrong, AA deserves the NOBEL PRIZE FOR WHAT IT HAS DONE AND CONTINUES TO DO FOR MANkind. I am one of the biggest proponents for people going to meetings, getting sponsors and following the 12 steps. However, I am also aware that it is not for everyone. Having an open mind and being flexible in treatment is also necessary, especially when you are dealing with chronic pain. Pain patients do not do well in AA or NA and BUPRENORPHINE IS IDEAL FOR THESE PATIENTS.

For those of you who are struggling with opiate and other addictions, please have an open mind and find a doctor who has a similar approch like mine. Get more info at www.painandaddiction.com.
M.D.
Rick Chavez,

1140 days ago
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