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Addiction and Substance Abuse

Cocaine Side Effects

10/19/2009

Question:

I have been using cocaine for about 13 years, experiencing many different side effects. The inside of my nose is destroyed. I have holes in my nose, so when I snort, cocaine gets stuck in them holes and get hard like a sores. I have to daily take a q-tip and go in my nose, moving these sores around so I can blow them out. When I look in my nose, I can see clear to the other nostril. My nose always feel like I have something in it, I always sniffing. Can I ever get the inside of my nose well again?

Answer:

Thank you for your question. You are certainly in a very difficult spot having suffered from cocaine addiction for 13 years. Cocaine addiction is a relentless addiction that routinely strips people of their self concept, close family relations, finances, and sometimes even their physical health.

The physical problems from cocaine addiction tend to come along fairly late in the course of the disease, years after the personal and inter-personal problems have arisen. The nose problems that you describe are common in people with your type and degree of addictive disease.

The good news is, that many and sometimes all of the nose problems can either heal-up, or be fixed through ENT surgery. However, the healing or the surgery never really helps unless a person commits to a full addiction recovery program and maintains sobriety. So, work on committing yourself to recovery and sobriety, and get some medical evaluations of your nose problems from the treatment program physicians! Good luck, you (and everyone else with active cocaine addiction) clearly deserve better, and you can get better.

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Response by:

Ted   Parran, MD Ted Parran, MD
Associate Professor of General Medical Sciences
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University