Doctor struck off after patient dies from detoxification treatmentBMJ 2001; 323 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.323.7319.955/b (Published 27 October 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:955
- Owen Dyer
An anaesthetist in England was struck off the medical register by the General Medical Council last week after a heroin addict died while under his care undergoing a controversial treatment in which the doctor had an undisclosed financial interest.
Dr Gary Gerson was found guilty of serious professional misconduct in his treatment of Brendan Woolhead, aged 34, a long time heroin addict who underwent a course of ultra-rapid opiate detoxification at the London Welbeck Hospital.
The controversial technique involves a cocktail of drugs, including the opiate antagonist naltrexone, and a general anaesthetic to keep the patient unconscious during the first hours of withdrawal. Fifteen different drugs were believed to have …