MUSC Hero Testimonial

My name is Jim Paquette. I am honored to be part of the MUSC HERO campaign.

I live in Pawleys Island with my wife and three children. My story with MUSC begins on July 5, 2009, when I awoke on the floor-not the bed-of my home office. I vowed that morning that something was going to change in my life for the better or I was in serious jeopardy of losing my life and family that I had become so accustomed to and loved dearly.

Later in July, I noticed an advertisement in the Post and Courier from MUSC describing a clinical trial for people who often drink alcohol. I called the number on the advertisement and was directed to Dr. Alicia Baros who described a program that MUSC and thru the Center for Drug and Alcohol Program was sponsoring. Dr Baros asked me to come to MUSC for a series of tests to see if I medically qualified for the program.

The first week of August in 2009 I went to MUSC and took the tests. I didnít qualify. However, Dr. Baros mentioned that I did qualify for a clinical trial MUSC was sponsoring with Eli Lilly involving a treatment for alcohol dependence. I submitted to more examinations and tests and was finally accepted into the program the second week of August 2009.

I tell you these details because the clinical trial I was involved with was all about details. Having tests performed every week or two, having to meet with certain individuals every week or two, having to detail every bit of my alcohol consumption from the time I left MUSC to my next visit. The trials were all about details. For the next 16 weeks I took a medication that Ely Lilly thought had the potential to revolutionize the treatment of alcohol dependency in this city and around the world.

Bottom line was that my alcohol consumption dropped dramatically. My elevated liver enzymes became normal. My cholesterol level became normal. I appeared to look better. I felt better. I felt better because my family witnessed a change in me. They got their husband and father back and for that, Dr. Anton, I am forever grateful to you, your staff, and especially MUSC, for having the courage to help sponsor such a program which had the ability to change peoples lives for the better. To Dr. Raymond Anton - You are my MUSC hero.

I want to say couple of things about two other individuals in the CDAP program staff. All of the staff are remarkable and extraordinary professionals. I mean that with my whole heart. I told Dr. Anton that not once in the 16 weeks I came to MUSC for the clinical testing did I ever feel the staff was in any way static-that is every visit seemed to me to be like a brand new visit to MUSC. There are a couple of people who really stand out. One is the receptionist at CDAP - Mrs. Jane Eddy. She is the first person everyone meets at CDAP when they get off the fifth floor elevator in the Right Tower of 67 President Street. You can ask my wife this as I told her every week-if I could hire someone like her to be at my front desk I would do it in a heartbeat. Always cheerful, always friendly, always looking for ways to make the uncomfortable comfortable and just a good honest human being. First impression is very important and this lady understands this concept. Jane gave me her umbrella on one of my visits when it poured down rain and President Street turned into a river. She also told me a way to the parking garage so I wouldnít damage my leather shoes. Jane Eady is my MUSC Hero.

The other person at CDAP who stands out is Dr. Patricia Latham. I learned more about addiction and dependence every week from this gracious lady in ten minutes than I could have reading book after book about the subject. She was my inspiration, along with my family, to fight the good fight, to stay in the program, and be brutally honest with myself about the issues which brought me to MUSC. I am forever in your debt Dr. Latham. Dr. Pat Latham is also my MUSC hero.

I am honored to be here today and I am honored to be part of the MUSC Hero campaign.

Thank you.

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Center for Drug & Alcohol Programs
MUSC
67 President Street
MSC 861
Charleston, SC
(843) 792-2727