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Addiction Recovery Research Center

Fralin Biomedical Research Institute

2 Riverside Circle

Roanoke, VA  24016

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Phone: 540-315-0205

Email: iqrr@vtc.vt.edu

Media Inquiries:

John Pastor, FBRI Director of Communications

Phone: 540-526-2222

Email: jdpastor@vt.edu

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MATT'S Story 

“How a gifted surgeon and God saved my life:

I have been a member of AA for the past 4 years. They say in Alcoholics Anonymous that you will eventually hear your story being shared by a chairperson. I have not yet heard my story. I think this may be because most people do not survive an acute bleed out of three and a half pints of blood in 20 minutes from 3 open varices in their upper intestine and esophagus.

I drank for for 27 years. At 38 I went to rehab and intensive outpatient therapy. I still did not believe I was powerless over alcohol. At 41 I developed ascites because of scarring of my liver. My eyes were very yellow. I was jaundice. I spent a week in the hospital having fluid drained from my body. I still do not believe I was powerless over alcohol. At 42 I vomited three and a half pints of blood in 20 minutes. 3 varices in my esophagus and upper intestine. For the grace of God and a very gifted GI surgeon,, who was still at the hospital at 8 o’clock at night, I am alive today! I had a 30 percent chance of living when I arrived at the ER. I was then given a 50 percent chance of living after emergency surgery. The second night in the ICU I crashed. For the grace of God they were able to bring me back. I am grateful today that AA and the 12 steps have made me a recovered alcoholic. I thank God for my continued spiritual experiences and have relieved me of the mental obsession and the physical craving of alcohol.”