In this video, Mikhail Varshavski, DO — who goes by “Doctor Mike” on social media — reacts to unique addictions.
Following is a partial transcript of the video (note that errors are possible):
Trina: I’m addicted to coffee enemas.
Narrator: For the past two years, Trina hasn’t been able to function without her daily coffee enemas, a procedure where liquid is injected into the colon to clean out the lower intestine. Her addiction is so intense she does up to 4 every day.
Varshavski: Let’s just do it right off the bat. Coffee enemas have not been proven to help with any medical condition. In like the 60s and 70s, we used to say maybe for constipation, but that’s been dropped from medical literature. We have so many better ways of handling constipation that this is largely unnecessary. They’re saying coffee enemas are used to clean your colon. No, they’re not. It’s a self-cleansing part of the body.
Mike: My initial reaction was, “My God, that’s disgusting.”
Varshavski: Pretty judgmental response.
Mike: I tried it and now I’m addicted to coffee enemas.
Narrator: Two years ago, Trina turned to this unconventional ritual after a series of health issues.
Trina: I had a lot of stomach problems, digestive problems, problems with my kidneys, my liver. I start to do research and it led me into the coffee enemas. Immediately I really started to feel the benefits.
Varshavski: It’s understandable someone that is having symptoms, who is struggling, looking to find answers online, finds a treatment that is within their grasp, something that they can do on their own, and tries it. But it doesn’t mean it’s the right treatment or it’s something that most people should try.
My concern is that there is something else going on in these people’s bodies that can be missed and potentially get worse over time because they are not seeing a doctor. The problems with kidneys need to be investigated because if kidneys start failing, that’s a threat to your own life.
Julius: My name is Julius. I’m 62 years old and I’m addicted to balloons.
Varshavski: I love balloons.
Julius: They are beautiful. They’re soft, smooth, and delicate. I have a connection with them.
Varshavski: Is this like going to be similar to what we’ve seen in the previous episodes of like objectophilia or even animism where you believe that certain physical inanimate objects have a soul or spirit, or maybe you become even sexually attracted to them? I’m curious.
Narrator: Now Julius has filled his home with over 50,000 balloons.
Varshavski: 50,000, that’s a lot of balloons.
Narrator: He can’t sleep unless he is surrounded by them,
Julius: My favorite is the spherical one.
Varshavski: Honestly, I don’t see what’s wrong with this yet. He likes decorating his house with balloons. Some people like painting their walls. I don’t know. They put wallpaper up. Some people put paper on their walls. To each their own.
Narrator: But Julius’s obsession with balloons goes beyond shapes and colors.
Julius: My love for balloons is also a sexual love. When I see a beautiful balloon, my heart starts to flutter and I get aroused. I’ll take a 12-inch and I’ll inflate it to 11 inch. That way it can take a lot of abuse.
Varshavski: There is a potential connection between objectophilia, animism, and autism that one study tried to explore. I’m interested in exploring that subject to see how connected those two conditions are.
Julius: My wife thinks it’s strange, but she accepts it.
Varshavski: Again, like you have a job, you have a partner, you live a good life, you take care of your health, and you’re sexually attracted to balloons. Not really a disorder. Disorders are based on ability to perform life functions, get satisfaction in life, and reach goals in life. Let him sit in his room and blow up balloons and squeeze them. Like, why is he even a thing on this show. It’s kind of weird.
Karmello: I’m addicted to butt injections.
Varshavski: I’m curious if this is butt injections through like a BBL [Brazilian butt lift], where they do liposuction and reinject the fat.
Narrator: Karmello has had 54 butt injections, yet she has never bared her behind to a plastic surgeon. She receives her shots on the black market, getting pumped with an unregulated substance that’s been known to include metal lubricants and cement.
Varshavski: Yeah. I mean that’s really dangerous. There is so much that can go wrong here. This isn’t a traditional BBL. Even BBLs are dangerous. Like 1 in 3,000 individuals who has a BBL has a complication of a fatty embolism. The fat actually gets lodged into their blood vessels and can be lethal if it travels all the way up to the lungs.
I have actually had patients that have had huge, huge complications as a result of bad injections like this. They were done abroad in other countries, but then they ended up getting a terrible cellulitis, abscess formation in the buttock area where like, major surgery had to take place to take out the necrotic tissue, dead tissue, so they ended up losing a part of their buttock.
Dr. Youn: What brings you in today?
Varshavski: Dr. Youn, welcome back to the channel.
Dr. Youn: Do you have any idea what she injected you with? Did she tell you?
Karmello: She said liquid silicone, but I’m not sure if that’s really what it was.
Dr. Youn: Did she do anything afterwards? I mean, did she stitch up the incisions?
Karmello: She put superglue.
Varshavski: There are times we use glue in medical settings in the ER, but not for deep wounds, not for big wounds, not for wounds that can potentially become severely infected. Like, there’s a time and place for all medical tools and that’s not the place for superglue.
Dr. Youn: You can see here this is your thigh, the fat in your thigh, which is smooth and normal. But up here it looks kind of spongy, this texture, and that’s definitely not normal. Even though you’re healthy, it just takes one bad injection to literally kill you.
Varshavski: Oh, that’s good. I’m glad she was able to decide not to do that again.
Casie: My name is Casie. I’m 26 years old. I’m from Fayetteville, Tennessee, and I’m addicted to carrying around my husband’s urn.
Narrator: Their marriage was picture-perfect, until Shawn suffered a severe asthma attack two months ago.
Varshavski: Two months ago, it’s recent. Why are they not letting this woman bereave in peace?
Narrator: Her addiction has recently evolved.
Casie: I guess with the transfer of his cremains some got into the cardboard box as well and they spilled out on my hands. I didn’t want to wipe him off — because that’s my husband I don’t want to wipe them away — so I just licked it off my fingers.
Varshavski: Infectious disease wise, it’s her husband, so a very low risk there and the body has been cremated, so all infectious diseases will essentially be wiped out as well.
Casie: It tastes like rotten eggs, sand, and sandpaper, but I have grown to love that taste.
Varshavski: I wonder if there’s a pica condition here happening.
Doctor: I’m a little bit concerned about what’s in embalming fluid and I’m a little bit concerned about how much of those chemicals are in those ashes.
Varshavski: Oh, I did not know that that was the case. If there was embalming fluid used, formaldehyde is the main ingredient in embalming fluid and that is very lethal. I think one ounce of formaldehyde can be lethal to your lungs, throat, and nervous system. Like, there are a lot of issues with that. Then the other ingredients in embalming fluid are like methanol, ethanol, things that can lead to blindness and brain damage. Like that’s a really serious concern.
Mike Varshavski, DO, is a board-certified family physician and social media influencer with more than 8.7 million subscribers.