Lamar Odom talks experimental treatment helping his recovery

The former NBA star says his medically supervised usage of ketamine has helped him control his drug addiction.
5:20 | 05/17/21

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Transcript for Lamar Odom talks experimental treatment helping his recovery
We turn now to Lamar Odom. His road to recovery, and the basketball star is sober six years after a near fatal overdose, and he's credit a new drug therapy for helping him battle his addiction. Our Steve osunsami talked to him about it. Reporter: Lamar Odom -- I feel good. Excited about being here. Reporter: The former NBA champion and olympic medalist has been trying to get sober for the better of a decade and he agrees he cheated death in 2015 after four days of heavy drugs in a Las Vegas brothel sent him to a hospital in a coma. I just want you to close your eyes. Reporter: But today he thinks he's found something that helps him beat addiction. You had never heard of ketamine before this point? I never heard of it. I call it the healthy high. The healthy high? The healthy high. Reporter: Odom who made headlines for his famous marriage and famous troubles, is becoming a leading voice for ketamine therapy. Time for liftoff. Reporter: He's being treated with regular visits like this one under supervision. They give him small doses that last about an hour. I have been doing it for, like, two years now. I take another one on Friday. Reporter: Ketamine is a pain reliever that was approved by the fda in the 1970s and in the '80s, it became a club drug. What health officials are discovering now is that in small doses, it may be helpful to people struggling with addictions, PTSD, anxiety, suicidal feelings and other mental health conditions where the person hasn't seen much success with other treatments. How many times have you tried to treat what you were dealing with? Several times. I don't know. I went to rehab and did some other things, but ketamine came into my life at the right time. I'm feeling amazing. I'm alive, I'm sober. I'm happy. Reporter: To many, this might seem counterproductive, trying to get someone sober by giving them drugs, but the fda is calling this an off label use and they have a ketamine nasal spray to help treat depression. I don't wake up looking to do lines, you know what I'm saying? Or waking up in a dark place, or feeling unfulfilled. When kobe passed away, the old Lamar, that would have been every excuse in the world for me to go get high. Doing drugs didn't even enter my mind. Reporter: Doctors say that ketamine should be used together with other medications and therapies like meditation. They're still learning about how exactly ketamine affects the brain, but studies so far show that the treatment could possibly help relieve pain from old traumas like the guilt he still feels from being on the road when he lost his 6-month-old son in 2006. You know what's crazy? I don't even think I still even, like, sat down and cried about it. Reporter: This week, his story with ketamine is being told in a documentary that airs on YouTube, mtv live and other social media platforms. It's called "Lamar Odom reborn." He wants black men in particular to pay attention to mental health. Is this something you think you'll continue for the rest of your life? Yeah, I don't think I'll stop it. I have greatness inside of me. Try to get it out. Reporter: For "Good morning America," Steve osunsami. Atlanta. Let's bring in Dr. Jennifer Ashton. Doctor, help us here. You heard him say healthy high, and the doctor say ready for liftoff. Hearing those words may give a perspective, but what do you say? It is not ready for primetime yet. The research is incredibly preliminary, and it's just not widespread yet, but it is encouraging that it's being tested for people who really are out of options in a lot of cases. And this is not something -- you can't just talk to your doctor and say, write me a prescription. We saw him in this piece and he was under doctor supervision. He was in a clinic and hooked up to machines. I want to be crystal clear. This has to be given in a monitored, medically supervised setting. Otherwise it could be life-threatening or deadly. It comes with a hefty price tag, $350 to $1,000. Hardly ever covered by insurance, and right now it is considered an off label use by the fda. We use this medication in veterinary medicine as an anesthetic agent. It's not mainstream yet. So many people do deal with addiction and depression and looking for ways to treat it. They're hearing about ketamine. What do you tell those folks now who want to look into this? No one-size-fits-all treatment, T.J. You have to weigh the risks versus the benefits versus available options and alternatives, and the make the decision that is right for you with credentialed help. Dr. Ashton, my friend. I'll see you shortly. We got more work to do later. Yep. Thanks so much. That documentary will be available on Thursday which is mental health action day on yooub, and in partnership with mtv entertainment group, and Lamar and the film makers will hold a global viewing event Saturday on Facebook as well.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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