Was the Opioid Crisis Too Much for this Famous Houston Doctor?

Picture of several prescription bottles and pills

He weighed 842 lbs. when he decided to move to Houston. Robert Buchel wanted to get his life back after being bedridden by issues with his weight. So, he became a participant in TLC’s My 600-Lb. Life and came to Texas in order to receive treatment from Houston specialist Dr. Younan Nowzaradan. However, this patient’s challenges may have proven too much.

Did the Opioid Crisis Claim the Life of a Reality Star?

Before becoming a part of the TLC documentary series that logs the lives and struggles of morbidly obese patients, Buchel lived in New Jersey. He was too large to get around and reportedly struggled with depression. His fiancé encouraged the man to get his life together and start fresh, and so he came to Houston to make that happen.

Dr. Younan Nowzaradan was part of that solution. Nowzaradan has helped patients on My 600-Lb. Life for many seasons now, and his treatment of Buchel seemed to be progressing well. His patient managed to lose 200 lbs. through a combination of diet, exercise and surgical procedures. However, the demons of Buchel’s past would not let him go.

After having problems maintaining his diet and exercise regiment, the man had a heart attack while getting ready for weight loss surgery. Nurses and doctors spent over three hours trying to save Buchel, but their efforts were not enough. He passed away.

Family and friends of Buchel kept the man’s death a secret until the premier of his final My 600-LB. Life episode in early March. Afterward, they shared their grief and welcomed condolences from a stunned yet supportive fanbase. It was also revealed that an addiction to painkillers played a part in Buchel’s decline.

The opioid crisis has become the center of controversy all over the country. Advocates are decrying manufacturers’ marketing techniques, politicians have declared war on the epidemic and lawsuits are being filed all over the nation. In the flood of media and soundbites, it’s important to understand that this crisis doesn’t only affect lives by causing overdoses. There are other effects caused by these drugs and their highly addictive nature.

A message brought to you by the wrongful death attorneys at Tilton & Tilton LLP—Looking out for Houstonians hurt by the negligence of others.

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