No, that never happened to you? Me neither, but just the thought of such quackery raises the hairs on the back of my neck.
Don't get me wrong. Alternative medicine has its merits when done under the trained, skilled hands of medical professionals. However, when the quack diagnosing you has no medical license, failed medical exams, and oh yes, your mother died under his care after he claimed she had Lyme disease rather than MS, don't you think just maybe you should seek a second opinion?
Let's see what lessons we can learn from this horrific story of the fake doctor who prescribed watermelons and hot tubs as a cure for a serious disease ...
It all started with a certain Yevgeniy Valentine Vasin, 54, who posed as a doctor and gave care at $300 an hour for a Belmont, California mother-daughter duo.
The mother, Ronelle Kotter, had a prescription for multiple sclerosis ordered by a doctor at UCSF Medical Center. He told her she could cut her dosage in half. Sadly, she died of MS eight months ago at the age 56 -- after he insisted that she actually had Lyme disease. It was not until she passed that her children contacted police.
In the meantime, Vasin continued to treat her daughter. Contrary to the diagnosis given to her by medical staff at Stanford Medical Center, Vasin insisted she REALLY HAD lupus and commenced treating her with vitamins and "convinced her that to help her kidneys, she needed to eat watermelon in a hot tub."
Yes, watermelon in a hot tub.
According to The San Francisco Chronicle:
Last Friday, Vasin did plead no contest to two misdemeanor counts relating to masquerading as a doctor.
His punishment for the daughter's treatment? Thirty days in jail, which I am sure will have him out in a week Paris Hilton-style. He did receive three years probation and was ordered not to "engage in any medical-related employment or to pose as a doctor."
He faces no charges in the mother's death.
What a miscarriage of justice. Yes, the Lindsay Lohans of the world are not a threat to the public, but this man? He is a very real threat. He is a predator, preying on the hopes of very ill, desperate people. And there are likely others out there just like him, which is why this story is a reminder that you can never be too careful when it comes to medical professionals. My elderly mother has Lupus, and I can only imagine what I would feel if she succumbed to the disease after being told to eat watermelon and sit in a hot tub. I am sure I would give him his own dose of watermelon shoved up his ...
Do you think 30 days in jail was enough for this man's crime?
Images via sidknee23/Flickr