Restorations Therapy Blog

“The Doctors” Saved the Life of an Amputee in Recovery

by on Thursday, August 15th, 2019

“The Doctors” Saved the Life of an Amputee in Recovery

Recovering from a drug overdose and losing your legs can be a challenge for anyone. Luckily, sobriety teaches you to appreciate what is around you instead of focusing on your next high. Instead of letting his opioid addiction and the tragedy of losing his legs define his life, Athlete Matthew Brewer chose to dedicate his life to competing in sports.

The Start of Brewer’s Opioid Addiction

Growing up, Brewer always played sports like skateboarding, surfing, BMX biking, and snowboarding. In 1998, Brewer was ranked 14th in the nation by the U.S. Amateur Snowboard Association. He enjoyed the adrenaline rush he would get after the first big jump. In 2008, Brewer was diagnosed with testicular cancer which led him to develop an addiction to painkillers. After the doctor cut him off, he turned to heroin. His addiction lasted for six years and spent 90 days in jail for possession. His family staged an intervention and was touched by the gesture. Brewer became sober for a few months.

Hitting Rock Bottom

On September 26, 2014, Brewer was found eighteen hours later by his roommate unconscious after overdosing on heroin. While at the hospital five days later and after undergoing a couple of surgeries, the doctors told Brewer’s family that he needed to amputate Brewer’s legs. Two and a half years later, Brewer had no motivation to do anything. Doctors prescribed him with painkillers since it was the protocol for them to do that. Brewer would “look comatose” during family functions and just watch television all day.

Brewer’s Turnaround 

Brewer’s sister, Tera, met the producer of the medical show “The Doctors” and had her brother make a guest appearance. He had a somber look on his first appearance and told them he took pain medication that morning. His second appearance on the show introduced him to transcranial magnetic stimulation to wean him off the drugs and was set up with an amputee advocate by the third appearance. After detoxing, Brewer realized his new goal in life would be to walk again. Brewer eventually met up with other amputees on the same journey towards trying to walk again. He was also able to transition himself to full-length prosthetics. Brewer swims, surfs, snowboards, and competes in events like the Angel City Games. The message that Brewer wants to send to others is to not let self-doubt slow you down and to create your own reality. 

Located in Centennial, Colorado, Restoration Therapy works with patients who are struggling with addiction, intimacy disorders, and trauma who are seeking treatment. In order to offer patients a more holistic view on healthy sexuality, Restoration Therapy offers individualized and group therapy, workshops, psycho-educational classes, and more to restore the harm brought on by addiction and intimacy issues. For more information, please call us at (720) 446-6585 as we are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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