Corrupt Researcher Claims Mental Disorder Led to Corruption

August 9, 2010

In 2009, Anesthesiology News reported that a 2008 audit at Baystate Medical Center uncovered “one of the largest research frauds in history” committed by anesthesiologist Scott Reuben, MD.

Indeed, Dr. Steve Shafer, the editor in chief of Anesthesia & Analgesia is quoted in The New York Times stating: “He was one of the most prolific investigators in the area of postoperative pain management.  His fraud sets back our knowledge in the field tremendously.”  A list of Dr. Reuben’s 21 retracted publications is posted here

Natural News reports that Dr. Reuben, faces a 10 year prison term for fabricating data has agreed to repay $361,932 in research funding to several pharmaceutical companies, and $50,000 in penalties to the U.S. government. 

In their effort to lighten his possible 10 year prison sentence, Dr. Reuben’s lawyers are grasping at the defense of last resort–the psychiatric escape hatch.  They claim that Dr. Reuben suffered from “serious, but undiagnosed” bipolar disorder which led him to fabricate data and falsify research. 

However, that tactic is unlikely to wash–Dr. Reuben’s wife is a psychiatrist. 

Glenn J. Treisman, a professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, expressed skepticism that Reuben, an MD married to a psychiatrist, could suffer from undiagnosed bipolar disorder for so long.

More information is posted at AHRP.org.

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