For many years bodybuilders have taken various forms of steroids in their quest for bulging muscles. But now a new and dangerous trend appears to have come into play.
An increasing number of men have been admitted to hospital because they have tried desperately to grow their muscles – by injecting paraffin oil into their body.
Three days before Christmas it is believed a 26-year-old man died as a result of injecting just under three litres into his muscles when he was 21.
According to TV2, 51 patients are at present undergoing treatment in Herlev Hospital for paraffin-related diseases caused by injecting considerable amounts of paraffin oil over the last five to eight years.
A new and disturbing trend
Ebbe Eldrup, the doctor at Herlev Hospital who treated the young man who died, has stated that this number is only the tip of the iceberg.
He fears there might be thousands of people who have injected oil, and he urges people strongly to see a doctor if they have.
“I think people are embarrassed by it. They’re afraid of being sick, so they bury their heads in the sand,” he said.
Just two years ago Eldrup did not know of a single case, so this trend – or at least the consequences of it – has only surfaced in the last couple of years.
Destroying the body
Injecting paraffin-oil sends the body into what doctors describe as a ‘state of emergency’. It can ultimately destroy the kidneys because the oil causes the body to form too much calcium.
The young man who died just before Christmas had kidney stones, blood clots in his lungs and a badly damaged liver.
Once the oil is injected into the body it doesn’t come out. The only treatment is to try to spare the body organs as much as possible.
Pia Sjøgren from Aarhus University Hospital reports that at first men typically find it difficult to lie down and sleep, and also to find clothes that fit, because the areas where the oil has been injected become rock hard and begin to move and hurt.
With a glue gun
Lucas Emdal used a glue gun to shoot about 120 ml of paraffin oil directly into his and his friends’ muscles – a habit he started when he was 15 and continued for four to five years.
TV2 reports that he stated he wanted a better relationship with his body, and that he struggled with an inferiority complex. However, he is now being kept alive with large amounts of adrenal hormone. His hands are so affected that he has to take large doses of morphine to get through what he calls “a daily pain hell”.
He also has problems breathing and with his knees due to the extra weight.
Christina Andersen is also an example of this growing trend, showing that it is not only men who can fall victim to it. Two years ago she injected paraffin oil regularly into her breasts, but today she lives without them, as they had to be amputated.