Stem cell medic misconduct ruling

Stem cells
Image caption Dr Trossel used stem cells not designed for human use

A doctor who offered controversial stem cell treatments to multiple sclerosis patients faces being struck off by the General Medical Council.

Dutch-trained Dr Robert Trossel teated nine men and women with stem cells not designed for human use.

A GMC hearing has found his fitness to practise was impaired and that he breached "good medical practice".

It will decide later this month whether to remove him from the medical register or impose a lesser penalty.

The GMC panel said Dr Trossel had exaggerated the benefits of treatment based on "anecdotal and aspirational information".

'Not dishonest'

Dr Trossel had consulting rooms in Wimpole Street, London as well as his Preventief Medisch Centrum clinic in Rotterdam.

The nine patients involved in the case are James McCorrisken, Malcolm Pear, Stephen Murphy, Rebecca Parker, Catherine Neal, Tracy Wagstaff, Karen Galley, Deborah Sandford, and Anita Knowles - although the allegations against Dr Trossel in relation to Ms Neal and Ms Knowles were found not proved at an earlier hearing.

The doctor was found to have offered treatments which were "unjustifiable" on the basis of evidence, inappropriate, not in the best interests of patients and were "exploitative of vulnerable patients".

He also failed to warn of potential risks, according to the panel.

It also found that Dr Trossel failed to respect the rights of patients to be fully informed and that he "abused" his position as a doctor.

But he was not found to be dishonest because the panel accepted the doctor believed the claims he made.

It had heard, after a previous hearing in April, that the doctor had experienced a "change of heart" and that he had been "too enthusiastic" about the use of stem cell therapy.

But panel chairman Professor Brian Gomes da Costa, said: "It [the panel] notes that this is a case in which there is a consistent and potentially unsafe thread running throughout its course.

"Despite your assertions that you have reflected on your failings, the panel is concerned that you have demonstrated little insight into the seriousness of your misconduct and the effects this may have had on your patients.

"It cannot conclude that the misconduct found proved will not be repeated.

"The panel has determined that the totality of the facts found proved constitute repeated and serious breaches of many of the essential tenets of 'Good Medical Practice'."

More on this story

Around the BBC

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites