Friends' Matthew Perry reveals he nearly died & had a '2% chance to live' after his 'colon burst from opiate addiction' | The Sun

FRIENDS' Matthew Perry has opened up about his drug addiction past and revealed he almost died due to opiate use.

The actor got vulnerable with fans in his new memoir: Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, available on November 1.

In the book, Matthew detailed the terrifying time he almost died when his colon burst at the age of 49.

He explained that the incident was a result of his opiate abuse, which led to gastrointestinal perforation.

The TV star spent two weeks in a coma and five months in the hospital, fighting for his life.

He also had to use a colostomy bag for nine months.

Read More on Matthew Perry

Friends’ Matthew Perry dresses down for LA drive in $145,000 Aston Martin

Matthew Perry flaunts weight loss in rare outing with ex-girlfriend lookalike

Matthew's recovery was indeed a miracle, as he exclusively confessed to PEOPLE in this week's cover story that he wasn't expected to survive.

"The doctors told my family that I had a 2 percent chance to live," he recalled of when he was admitted into the hospital.

The Fools Rush In star continued: "I was put on a thing called an ECMO machine, which does all the breathing for your heart and your lungs. And that's called a Hail Mary. No one survives that."

Matthew's alcohol use began at age 24 when he joined the cast of Friends and spiraled not long after.

Most read in TV


MAFS UK star Matt is having a secret romance with 2021 bride

out of there

MAFS UK's Matt walks OUT of Reunion after 'unacceptable' behaviour


Strictly's Tony Adams had furious row with Katya during secret 'crisis' talks


Emmerdale to kill off at least EIGHT major characters in huge storm scenes

"I could handle it, kind of. But by the time I was 34, I was really entrenched in a lot of trouble," he admitted to the publication.

"But there were years that I was sober during that time. Season 9 was the year that I was sober the whole way through. And guess which season I got nominated for best actor? I was like, 'That should tell me something.'"


Matthew's addiction only escalated as Friends grew in popularity.

At the height of the sitcom's success, Matthew was consuming 55 Vicodin a day and weighed 128 pounds.

"If the police came over to my house and said, 'If you drink tonight, we're going to take you to jail,' I'd start packing. I couldn't stop because the disease and the addiction is progressive. So it gets worse and worse as you grow older," he shared.

With the support of his castmates – Matt Leblanc, Courteney Cox, Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, and David Schwimmer – Matthew said he is doing much better now and has adopted a healthier lifestyle.

After 15 rehab stays, the TV personality has maintained his sobriety and is determined to stay on course.

"I'm pretty healthy now," he said.

"I've got to not go to the gym much more because I don't want to only be able to play superheroes. But no, I'm a pretty healthy guy right now," Matthew jokingly added.

However, he has acknowledged that slip-ups do happen and it's important to "fight your way back."

"It's important, but if you lose your sobriety, it doesn't mean you lose all that time and education.

"Your sober date changes, but that's all that changes. You know everything you knew before, as long as you were able to fight your way back without dying, you learn a lot," he explained.


Matthew's troubled past has reminded him to focus on his sobriety, especially after the 14 surgeries on his stomach he's undergone to date.

"My therapist said, 'The next time you think about taking Oxycontin, just think about having a colostomy bag for the rest of your life,'"

"And a little window opened, and I crawled through it, and I no longer want Oxycontin anymore," the 53-year-old shared.

Matthew also has a new appreciation for life since his scary episode four years ago and is motivated to help others suffering from addiction.

"There were five people put on an ECMO machine that night, and the other four died, and I survived.

"So the big question is why? Why was I the one? There has to be some kind of reason," he pondered.

As for his upcoming book, Matthew hopes that people could "relate" to his story and know that celebrities aren't immune to the disease.

"I think they'll be surprised at how bad it got at certain times and how close to dying I came," he said about readers.

"I say in the book that if I did die, it would shock people, but it wouldn't surprise anybody. And that's a very scary thing to be living with. So my hope is that people will relate to it and know that this disease attacks everybody. It doesn't matter if you're successful or not successful, the disease doesn't care."

Matthew also shared that he's "grateful to be alive," and he is proud of himself for clawing his way back.

"What I'm most surprised with is my resilience. The way that I can bounce back from all of this torture and awfulness.

Wanting to tell the story, even though it's a little scary to tell all your secrets in a book, I didn't leave anything out. Everything's in there."

Upon seeing Matthew's face on the book cover in February, fans were pleased to see the 17 Again star looking happy amid his struggles.


It came after the Canadian actor slurred his words and nodded off during an interview with People in May 2021.

He sat down with his fellow Friends cast members to discuss the group's recent reunion.

A source later told The Sun that it wasn't a relapse that led to Matthew's odd behavior.

The insider revealed he had undergone dental work and was suffering in pain and feeling unwell.

The source said at the time: "Matthew turned up to the reunion and members of his team said that he had an emergency tooth procedure that day.

"That was said to impact his wellbeing and also how he was feeling.

"He had been in pain from what we understand, which caused the slurred speech.

"Obviously no one wants to film after a procedure, but it happened.

"The feeling was one of huge sympathy for Matthew especially in recent days given how people have reacted online.

"Matthew has told those around him that he is sober, and there is no need to worry."

Source: Read Full Article