The investigation didn’t stop there. The nightmare continues. (dramatic music) (radio chatter) Dr. Nita and Judge Mary went to Dayton, Ohio to find out what’s being done to fight this deadly drug epidemic. (radio chatter) Oh, what’s this?
(police sirens) It could be an overdose, it could be an OVI. Unknown breathing status. (police sirens) This is the worst crisis I’ve seen in 30 years. I worked the street during the Crack era, but they weren’t dying at this rate. What have you seen in the progression of the opioid epidemic? We used to be a very vibrant manufacturing town. Our economy is very bad, a lot people are self-medicating with these substances. It’s just sad to see what happened to our community. How does it impact the crime rate? Of course it’s up, these people aren’t working, so there’s stealing, robberies, car jackings. Gangs shooting it out over proceeds. Get out of our neighborhood, we’re dealing here. This whole epidemic is just terrible for us. This year we’re gonna double last year’s deaths. Double? Double. We could potentially lose 800 people in Montgomery County alone. We’re losing entire cities to this problem, when does it stop? We’re outpacing fatal car accidents right now. We see people gasping for air, they’re turning blue, they’re literally dying in front of you, and you hit them with Narcan, which is a miracle drug, and it brings ’em right back to life. They wake up, they’re upset that you ruined their high. There’s times we had 26 overdoses in a day. And it’s also an ideal location, when it comes to getting drugs in and out of the area. Yeah, we have two major interstates, products coming straight from Mexico up 75 to Dayton, Ohio. Then they can hit Interstate 70, and go to New York and Chicago, it’s the perfect location. (radio chatter) We had the opportunity to go with your Deputy Kidwell. We saw his world, which is really amazing to me, because as a judge, I would never have thought the streets would be consumed with 80, 90% of overdoses and drug addiction. (radio chatter) We’re on the west side of Dayton right now, which is known for drug sales, a lot of the car-to-car transactions. A lot of these neighborhoods are incredible, and then the next street over, there’s an entire street of abandoned homes. This is the hub. Even with the number of people that are dying from the drugs, it’s not slowing down. But this street right here, I get a lot of complaints that there’s cars that sit here and wait for drug sales. Those suspicious vehicle calls, that’s what we need. You go to certain gas stations, they’ll drive up and put two gel caps of heroin in your car and a business card. So they just want to get you hooked, ’cause they’re killing their customer base. As Americans, we are 5% of the world population, and we consume 80% of the opioids. We’re a pill society, you have a headache, you take a pill, you have a backache, you take a pill. They claim 40% of the people that go in your house look in your medicine cabinet. Realtors have that problem. Get it out of there, cause it’s part of the problem. We gotta get away from the stigma that it’s a 60-year-old junkie in an alley, these are people’s kids, moms, these are dads. Accountants, lawyers, judges, everybody. It’s a disease. It’s a disease. I would have parents come into my courtroom, “My daughter’s violated, will you have her picked up?” Do you ever get calls, “my kid’s on drugs, can you come and take him away without a crime having been committed?” All the time. We got parents call crying, you know, “my son’s gonna die tomorrow because we can’t get him into treatment.” People in Dayton, Ohio don’t want heroin anymore, they want Fentanyl. If you have kilo of Fentanyl, that’s a weapon of mass destruction, you can kill thousands of people. The next drug is Carfentanyl, we’ve had situations where they’ve put Fentanyl into cocaine, laced marijuana, so the key is just to get them addicted to Fentanyl. They’re chasing the next best high. We’re being destroyed from the inside out. These drug addiction problems, they lead to overdoses, and overdoses can lead to death. That is the finale, that is the end result of an addiction when you don’t get it under control. It’s over, they’re not here anymore, they’re gone.
What happened, these researchers found that the erectile dysfunction drugs pulled back those suppressor cells and stopped them from inhibiting the natural killer cells. The flu vaccine, because natural killer cells kill virus infected cells as well as cancer cells, the flu vaccine stimulates the natural killer cells because it’s a virus stimulation. And now you’ve pulled back the suppression, you’ve revved up the NK cells and now you’ll kill cancer. And they used a mouse model, again this is just all in mice, the mouse model, where they saw a certain number of metastases spread de novo, they did surgery. It increased it dramatically from I think 37 up to 127 metastases, then they added the erectile dysfunction drugs and those reduced it, and then they added the flu vaccine and it reduced it all the way down to 11 from 127, 90% reduction, dramatic. So just so people can understand so that we’re clear, what they were looking at is how many secondary tumors you have after that initial surgery. So as Dr. Piro was very elegantly pointing out, the idea is when you take out that primary cancer, it pulls back your immune system, that surveillance that usually keeps these tumors in check is temporarily sort of stunted, and this can now occur for 10 days, or even months. And so now you’re fueling those natural sentinels and guards of your system, the natural killer cells, to go back and get rid of those metastases, so the secondary tumors after that primary surgery. (clapping) It’s really important though to not take home from this conversation that you shouldn’t have surgery for cancer. Correct. Why? The only way to start the process of curing cancer in so many situations is to remove it. What we’re trying to do now is add something more to the situation beyond just chemotherapy and other things, that immunotherapy. So it’s adjunctive, when you look at the history of cancer treatment as a non-oncologist, incredibly toxic often, the treatments. Flu vaccine, erectile dysfunction drugs, pretty benign. If those two together, two very benign drugs in the arsenal, could be used successfully after surgery, that’s what I love about it. You’re not, you’re not talking about some treatment that is going to be incredibly toxic to your good tissues, I like that. You’re right. It’s because we’re manipulating the immune system and we’re actually what we’re doing with these drugs is actually helping your immune system do what it’s supposed to do. But I think it’s important to point out to people who might be taking these medications, or think about running out and getting that flu vaccine and take their erectile dysfunction drugs, not to do this. No. This has really only been studied in mice. The human trial is just about to start with 24 people who have abdominal cancer, and we don’t really know how it’s going to play out as yet. So really, really promising, but please don’t do this on your own just yet, we’re waiting on that data. No, and I think that your point is so important for everybody to hear out there that you’re the oncologist, you treat cancer. There are different modalities, each has a place, right? You’re exactly right, it’s a team approach, but there’s such a desire to, again, treat things naturally, to use the immune system, and we’re doing that. We’re doing that all the time now. But don’t say that I shouldn’t get my tumor out, we’ll control it with the immune system because that’s gonna lead to nothing good.