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State of New York Department of Health
State Board for Professional Medical Conduct

In the Matter of Irving I. Dardik, M.D.
Findings of Fact as to Patient A

  1. Between on or about May, 1991, and on or about September, 1992, Respondent consulted and treated Patient A for her chronic Multiple Sclerosis ("MS") at her family's homes in New York City and Long Island, at his office located at R.D. 1, Box 253, Hillcrest Drive, Great Meadows, New Jersey 07838, and at her home in Florida, both in person and over the telephone (T. 36; 42 Resp.'s Ex. 4).
  2. In or about May, 1991, in his first telephone conversation with Patient A, Respondent told her that he had the answer to her MS, that he could cure her, and that he-could have her walking in a year (T. 33-34; 37-39; 43; 46-47).
  3. In or about May or June, 1991, in another telephone conversation, Respondent told Patient A words to the effect that her myelin was not destroyed, but rather only thinned out, and that she could get it all back, and that he was not talking about a remission, but rather that his treatment would result in a cure (T. 34-35; 196-98).
  4. Patient A first met Respondent in person on or about June 12, 1991 at her sister JB's apartment, in New York City (T. 36; .*,.e) . In attendance at this meeting were Patient A, Respondent, and Michelle Morelli Weiss ("Michelle") , one of Respondent's therapists (T. 37). For portions of this meeting, JB was able to overhear the conversation, although she was not present in the room (T. 339). At this meeting, Respondent again told Patient A that he would have her walking normally again within a year, and that his wavenergy program was not only curing MS, but also cancer and ALS (T. 39; 339; 380; Resp.'s Ex. D) . He also told Patient A that her condition would never again be as bad as when she started treatment with Respondent and that she would be better than ever (T. 38; 20607; 209-10).
  5. At this meeting, Respondent explained his wavenergy program, and described how it would work to activate the Respondent's immune system through cycles of various exercises and periods of relaxation, which would change the flat linear waves of ill patients into healthy oscillating waves (T. 37; 39; 109-10).
  6. He also described how he would administer the program and monitor Patient A's progress through recording and analyzing changes in her heart rate, which would be captured through a special Polar brand watch and communicated daily to the Respondent via computer (T. 59-61; 91-92; Resp. Ex. D at 131).
  7. At this meeting with Patient A, Respondent did not physically examine her, nor did he take a baseline reading of her heart rate. Respondent only asked Patient A to walk so that he could observe her (T. 39; 46; 252-53; 257-60; 1330-31).
  8. At this meeting, Respondent did not take a history of Patient A (T. 253; 257-58). Prior to this time, Patient A sent Respondent some of her medical records on her own initiative, but Respondent did not contact her other treating physicians (T. 35-36; 253; 258; 332).
  9. At the June 12, 1991 meeting, Respondent told Patient A that the fee for the program would be $100,000 for one year's treatment, and that this fee was more expensive than usual, because she was the equivalent of three patients, and needed "hands-on" attention, constant care and supervision (T. 43-44; 191-93, 340-41; Resp. Ex. D at p. 132).
  10. Respondent also told Patient A that he would personally pay constant attention to her, that she would also be treated by his therapist Michelle and that he would not be able to take on new patients because he would be treating her so intensively (T. 43-44; 49; 99-100; 192). Respondent further told Patient A that she was a priority case, and that she would get sick of seeing him and his therapist (T. 39; 45; 340; 370).
  11. On or about June, 1991, Patient's A expectation was that Respondent would be personally treating her (T. 45; 74).
  12. on June 12, 1991, Patient A told Respondent that she used marijuana at night to reduce spasticity and temperature (T. 42-43), and that her family was aware of this (T. 29; 216).
  13. On or about June 14, 1991, Patient A bought a Polar watch from Respondent and commenced treatment with the wavenergy program (T. 59-62; 220-21). She also bought a variety of other equipment on Respondent's instructions, including a computer to transmit data and answer a questionnaire on a daily basis (T. 48; 90-92; 255-56; Pet.'s Ex. 29; 30; Resp.'s Ex. D at p. 132-33).
  14. On or about June 14, 1991, Respondent told Patient A that he would put the MS Society out of business, and that he believed he would win the Nobel Prize (T. 63-64; 66; 233).
  15. In a telephone conversation with JB in or about June 1991, Respondent told her he would cure Patient A (T. 63; 344-45); that his fee was so high because she was the equivalent of three patients; and that he would have to be "hands-on" with her five days a week (T. 343; 375).
  16. In or about June, 1991 at Respondent's instruction, JB called Respondent's wife and business manager, Allison Dardik, to discuss the fee (T. 345-48). A payment schedule was later worked out, with the $100,000 paid over a seven month period (T. 286-88; Pet.'s Exs. 6, 7, 19).
  17. No written contract concerning the wavenergy program was ever agreed to or signed by Patient A or her representatives (T. 315-16). In July, 1991, Respondent sent a draft contract to Patient A and/or Patient A's representatives which contained terms contradicting what he had previously told Patient A about the nature and efficacy of his treatment, in particular, that no cure was guaranteed and that the therapy was termed experimental (T. 167; 170-74; 289; 308-09; 334-35; Resp.'s Exs. B, F).
  18. On or about June 24, 1991, Respondent met with and told Patient A's mother that Patient A would never be worse, and that he would have Patient A walking by March, 1992 (T. 283; 300; 302; 31819; 328; 332-33).
  19. Between June, 1991, and September 1992, Patient A fully participated in the wavenergy program (T. 55-58; 79-80; 89; 95; 117-18; 154; 360-61; 390).
  20. Although there were other components, such as nutritional guidance and the taking of cold showers and sleeping at prescribed times, the bulk of Patient A's treatment consisted of her being given daily target heart rate numbers by Respondent's therapists, over the telephone and in person, with Patient A achieving these target heart rate numbers through cycles of exercise and relaxation and transmitting the data recorded by the Polar heart rate watch via computer to Respondent's office (T.49; 55-58; 66-67; 71; 75; 80; 90-97; 117-18).
  21. From on or about mid-June 1991, through on or about August, 1991, Patient A resided at JB's home in New York City (T. 70). Respondent visited Patient A no more than 5 times during this time period, and spent an average of one hour on these visits (T. 71-73). During this time period, Respondent spoke on the phone with her approximately daily until the first payment of $50,000 was made, and twice weekly thereafter (T. 81-83). During this time period, Respondent's therapist visited Patient A approximately 3-5 times per week for 2-3 hours per visit, and spoke with her nightly on the telephone (T. 71; 351).
  22. From on or about September, 1991 through on or about October, 1991, Patient A resided in Lawrence, Long Island (T.70; 83). This move was discussed and approved by Respondent (T. 83; 219-20). Respondent visited Patient A no more than 4 times during this time period, usually at the insistence of Patient A, and for an average of four hours per visit (T. 84-86; 88-89; 98-101; 22728).
  23. During this time period Respondent spoke on the phone with Patient A occasionally, usually when there was perceived good news, but not when things were going badly (T. 82; 86; 100-01). During this time period, Respondent's therapist visited Patient A approximately 3-4 times per week, and spoke with her often (T. 8687).
  24. In or about October 1991, Respondent communicated in a letter to Patient A's mother words to the effect that he was curing Patient A's Multiple Sclerosis (T. 293; Pet. Is Ex. 9). In this letter, Respondent also said he would visit Patient A periodically when she moved to Florida (Pet. I s Ex. 9, Resp's Ex. D at p. 14 1) .
  25. From on or about November, 1991, through on or about April, 1992, Patient A resided in Orlando, Florida (T.83;. 110; 116). Patient A discussed this move with Respondent and received his approval prior to moving (T. 110; 231). During this time period, Respondent visited Patient A one time, a two day period during which he worked with Patient A for a total of a few hours (T. 111-14). While Patient A was in Florida, Respondent spoke on the phone with her occasionally (T. 129-30).
  26. In or around November -January, 1991-2, Patient A was able to walk unassisted for the first time since 1989. This fact was, publicized in the local newspapers (T. 127; Resp's Ex. E).
  27. In or about December, 1991, Patient A sent Respondent a letter stating she was confident he would cure her (T. 118-19; Pet.'s Ex. 10). Respondent did not answer the letter and did not try to dissuade her of her belief ((T. 125).
  28. In or about January, 1991, Respondent told Patient A he would send Michelle to see her every other week (T.128). Subsequent to January 1991, Patient A was seen a total of at most 4 times for approximately 3 days each time, and was telephoned nightly by the therapist (T. 114; 117).
  29. In or about February or March, 1991, Patient A placed several telephone calls to Respondent, to complain of fatigue and lack of strength (T. 130; 154). Respondent did not return the calls (T. 130, 601).
  30. Patient A moved back to Long Island in or about April, 1992, and resided there until the end of her treatment in or about August, 1992 (T. 131-32). During this time period Respondent did not visit Patient A in Long Island, and spoke with her only occasionally on the telephone (T. 131-32). During this time period, various therapists visited Patient A several times a week and spoke with her by telephone (T. 132-33). By this time, Respondent had taken on several new patients (T. 87; 98-99; 19092).
  31. Patient A last saw Respondent in August, 1992, when she went to his home in New Jersey and stayed at a cottage there for what was supposed to be a period of intensive treatment with him (T. 134-35; 137; 240). While Patient A was there for five days, Respondent spent less than five hours with her (T. 137-41).
  32. Since the early spring of 1992, Patient A's physical condition has deteriorated (T. 153-54; 199-201).
  33. Respondent admitted that he did not keep medical records or take any notes about Patient A, or any of the patients herein. Rather, he testified, for all patients he only kept records concerning the wavenergy program, which records consist of graphs, patient questionnaires, and target heart rate numbers (T. 1841).

Conclusions

  1. Respondent held himself out to Patient A as a physician, with a record of achievements in vascular surgery and the Olympics Sports Medicine program. Respondent's reputation was an important factor relied on by Patient A in choosing to participate in the wavenergy program.
  2. Respondent told Patient A that he would cure her multiple Sclerosis through his wavenergy program, for which he charged her $100,000. He told her this fee was based on the fact that he personally would be treating Patient A intensively and would limit taking on other patients. He intentionally misrepresented to Patient A the extent he would be personally involved in her care, and did not devote the amount of time to her that Patient A expected, based on the statements he had made to her.
  3. Patient A was not cured of her multiple sclerosis.
  4. Respondent did not take an adequate medical history, nor conduct a proper physical examination of Patient A, and did not maintain adequate medical records for Patient A. This failure represented a departure from competent medical practice.
  5. Respondent did not reveal personally identifiable facts, data or information obtained from Patient A to other patients, or about other patients to Patient A.

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This page was posted on October 23, 2000.