Without evidence of benefit, an intervention should not be presumed to be beneficial or safe.

- Rogue Medic

Scott Reuben, M.D. Sentenced to 6 Months in Prison for Fraud

Dr. Reuben, 51, former chief of the acute pain clinic at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, Mass., also was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine, $361,932 in restitution and to forfeit $50,000 in assets in the case. Upon completion of his prison term, Dr. Reuben must undergo three years of supervised release, the Justice Department said.[1]

Unlike Ex-Dr. Andrew Wakefield, nobody is pretending that there is some big conspiracy to silence this doctor.

Why not?

Fraud is not an essential part of medicine or science, but it is the essence of anti-vaccine/alternative medicine/anti-science claims.

Scott Reuben was falsifying data on celecoxib (Celebrex) and pregabalin (Lyrica). This was apparently to make it appear that both are more effective than the actual data showed, in treating surgical pain. Pfizer, the manufacturer of both drugs, did not defend Reuben’s fraudulent actions, even though this resulted in the retraction of a lot of research supporting their drugs.

Dr. Reuben had been a paid speaker on behalf of Pfizer’s medicines, and it paid for some of his research. “It is very disappointing to learn about Dr. Scott Reuben’s alleged actions,” Pfizer said in a statement. “When we decided to support Dr. Reuben’s research, he worked for a credible academic medical center and appeared to be a reputable investigator.”[2]

The response of those defending Ex-Dr. Andrew Wakefield is quite a bit different. Others read these defenses and do a much better job of pointing out the many logical flaws.[3], [4]

This is not the first time I have written about Dr. Reuben’s fraud. I included a list of all of the research that he published, highlighting all that was retracted.[5], [6]

Fraud is not something that we should defend.

Fraud is aggressively criticized in medicine and science.

Fraud is even aggressively criticized in finance – look at Ken Lay, Bernie Madoff, and dozens of others.

Fraud is defended by those who have nothing else to support their ideas.

If our only arguments are Green Our Vaccines and Too Many, Too Soon, but all of the valid science shows that these bumper sticker slogans have no basis, then we must rely on fraud.

If our only argument is What’s The Harm, because there is no research supporting alternative medicine, then we must rely on fraud.

Science cannot tolerate fraud, because fraud is the antithesis of science.

Science is a way of trying not to fool yourself. The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. – Richard Feynman.

Footnotes:

1 Reuben Sentenced in Fraud Case
Six months in prison, fines, for fabricating data

Adam Marcus
June 25, 2010
Anesthesiology News
Article

2 Top Pain Scientist Fabricated Data in Studies, Hospital Says
by Keith J. Winstein and David Armstrong
Wall Street Journal
Article

3 Andrew Wakefield Fights Back
by Harriet Hall, M.D.
Science-Based Medicine
Article

4 The martyrdom of St. Andy, part 2: David Kirby rides to the rescue (sort of)
by Orac
Respectful Insolence
Article

5 Dr. Reuben’s Fraudulent Science and Patient Care
Rogue Medic
Article

6 A Comment on Dr. Reuben’s Fraudulent Science and Patient Care
Rogue Medic
Article

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