Footage of a man turning his skin completely blue after self-medicating for various health problems has resurfaced several years after he originally rose to fame.
Paul Karason, who suffered from various ailments, including dermatitis, consumed a mixture of silver compounds in an attempt to prevent his skin from flaking.
According to a 2008 episode of Inside Edition, the Washington resident also began rubbing the mixture on his skin, which caused him to develop argyria – a rare medical syndrome caused by silver poisoning from dietary supplements.
Paul, who became known as “Blue Man” and “Papa Smurf” because of his blue-tinted skin, began drinking the homemade colloidal silver mixture after reading an ad in a New Age magazine that said it could improve health and rejuvenation. promoting – claims that are not substantiated.
The mixture of tiny silver ions and nanoparticles suspended in liquid caused Paul’s skin to completely change color – something he says he didn’t notice until a friend pointed it out to him.
Paul Karason (pictured while appearing on the TODAY show in 2008) turned blue after self-medicating with silver supplements
‘A a friend who hadn’t seen me in a while came over and asked me what I had done to myself,” Paul, who was born with fair skin and red hair, told Inside Edition.
He added that having blue skin offered some benefits, including never getting sunburnt.
However, Paul noted that he didn’t enjoy the looks he got because he looked different from other people.
But overall, when asked if he could go back to how he used to be, Paul said he really didn’t know.
In 2008, he appeared on the TODAY show alongside his then-girlfriend Jackie Northrup, who discussed his reaction when he was called ‘Papa Smurf’.
She said, “That was a nickname he didn’t appreciate depending on who said it.
‘If it was a kid who ran up to him and said ‘Papa Smurf’ it would put a smile on his face. But if it was an adult, well…”
Several years after he initially rose to fame, Paul’s personal life took a downturn.
Unfortunately, Paul’s life took a turn for the worse after he suffered from a series of health issues and struggled to find work, leading him to lose his home and move to a homeless shelter in 2012.
In 2013, Paul Karason (pictured here in 2008) died while being treated for pneumonia at a Washington hospital, following a heart attack
He struggled to find work, broke up with his fiancé and suffered from several health crises, including prostate cancer and heart problems.
After losing his home, Paul was forced to move from Madeira, California in 2012 to return to his hometown of Bellington, Washington to move into a homeless shelter.
However, after returning home, he was soon reunited with a school friend Jo Anna Elkins, and the couple – who would later marry – moved in together.
In September 2013, Paul Karason died at the age of 62 in a Washington hospital, where he was being treated for pneumonia following a heart attack.
His then-estranged wife Jo Anna Karason told the press that he had also suffered a stroke.
Colloidal silver is a suspension of silver in a liquid base – in Paul’s case, distilled water.
Silver has antibacterial properties and has been used to fight infections for thousands of years.
But it fell out of use when penicillin, which is much more effective, was developed.
It continued to be used in some over-the-counter drugs until 1999, when the FDA banned it because it causes argyria, which results from silver reacting with light in the same way it does in photography.