Ryan Kesler has revealed that a lack of education on pain medications led to major complications for him, and he believes many other NHLers are suffering the same fate. Kesler made his comments on a new TSN documentary called "The Problem of Pain."

Kesler, and others, spoke specifically about Toradol, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug. Kesler hasn't played in the NHL since March of 2019 due to chronic hip problems. He was prescribed Toradol to manage the pain saying "I never wanted to hurt the team, so I knew I had to play. To play, you have to take painkillers."

In 2015, Kesler was diagnosed with colitis, a chronic disease that causes long-lasting inflammation and ulcers in the digestive tract. Doctors told him it was most likely due to the amount of Toradol he had taken.

"I had holes in my colon and ulcers, and basically my whole intestines went into spasm. It's very unpleasant. You've gotta go to the bathroom 30-40 times a day. And when you do go to the bathroom, it's pure blood. It depletes you," he said. "It's terrible. And it's all because I wasn't made aware of what this drug could potentially do to me."

In the fall of 2019, Kesler was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease, which causes an inflammatory bowel. He said the NHL must do a better job educating players on the dangers of taking pain meds long-term.

"I never knew what it could do to me. Or the side effects. I feel like if I can talk about the dangers about it, it'll help everybody."

TSN's Rick Westhead, who co-created "The Problem of Pain" told ESPN the overuse and abuse of Toradol is common among NHL players, with multiple agents telling him they have players "who take it before every regular-season and playoff game" to manage their pain.

Source: ESPN
SEPTEMBER 23, 2020  (8H06)