CARMEL, Ind.-- A local father is continuing his fight to help people struggling with drug addiction after losing his own son to an overdose.
Joe Pappas consulted with doctors to find a new way outside of rehab to treat drug addiction. That's when he discovered a treatment called Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD) therapy. Now he offers the NAD therapy out of his new Carmel treatment center called Emerald Neuro-Recover Clinics.
As we get older, NAD levels decline and deplete in all forms of addiction. The ten-day IV treatment replenishes patients with that natural compound all of us have. The treatment focuses on the natural balance of chemicals in the brain and the realignment of neuro-chemicals. In doing so, an addict can significantly reduce the severity of withdrawal and virtually eliminate the craving for opiates.
"I don't think it would have been almost as easy this last six days had I not had this," said a 37-year-old patient who was addicted to methadone for eight years. She did not want to be identified.
Pappas says fighting the drug epidemic in our community is his personal mission. His son Aristotle died from an opioid overdose last year.
"A reflection of him that has caused me to get great joy and purpose by helping other people," said Pappas.
The $15,000 treatment is not covered by insurance, but Pappas says he believes in it so much he wants to make it widely available. He's currently working with local businesses and looking for donors to help others afford the life saving treatment his son was didn't receive.
"I think about him every day and I think about what we're doing every day and it means a lot to me to be able to support the community and help other people. I feel as if it was my calling to do this," Pappas said.
NAD treatment has about a 90 percent success rate. The treatment is still considered "experimental" and is not covered by insurance.