Prominent Men's Health doctor Glenn Twentyman committed multiple professional breaches by unjustifiably using Human Growth Hormone and powerful anabolic steroids to treat patients, a tribunal has found.
Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal chair David Carden told Dr Twentyman this afternoon his keeping of patient records did "not nearly begin" to approach the standard required. His failure to adequately monitor patients and keep comprehensive records was exacerbated by the powerful nature of the drugs in question, which could produce dangerous side effects and had the potential to be abused.
Dr Twentyman had also altered patient records after an investigation into his practices began. "There are questions of honesty and integrity that arise from that," Mr Carden said.
Dr Twentyman had admitted a charge of professional misconduct and 20 particulars relating to the charge, but argued through his lawyer Harry Waalkens that the breaches did not warrant professional sanction.
The tribunal found that 18 of the 20 particulars were made out, with 16 of them requiring a penalty be applied.
The tribunal will now focus on what that penalty should be. It has the power to cancel Dr Twentyman's registration or suspend it for up to three years.
Dr Twentyman's breaches include:
•Prescribing HGH and testosterone without establishing an adequate clinical basis
•Failing to undertake long-term monitoring, including for serious negative effects such as overgrowth of bones, extremities, face and jaw
•Failing to conduct adequate physical examinations
•Failing to keep adequate notes
•Altering patient notes
•Prescribing ephedrine to a patient for weight loss despite the patient having hypertension (high blood pressure)
•Prescribing pseudoephedrine in bulk despite submitting to a previous Competence Inquiry that he had stopped doing so
Dr Twentyman is 30 per cent shareholder in Livingproof and Anti-Ageing New Zealand Ltd, a company that trades as High Street Men's Clinic. The central-Auckland-based clinic has treated around 9000 patients for conditions such as low libido, erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.
The names of the patients involved in the charges have been permanently suppressed, as have details such as occupations that may lead to the patients' identification.
The breaches admitted by Dr Twentyman include obtaining large quantities of anabolic steroid Nandrolone and giving it to two patients over four years in "circumstances which departed from usual prescribing practices".
He also admits obtaining 19,600 tablets of tamoxifen, a drug used in treating breast cancer and menopausal women and also by anabolic steroid users and bodybuilders to treat gynecomastia (growth of male breast tissue). He admits improperly dispensing the drug to at least three patients in combination with testosterone and then failing to assess the potential long-term adverse effects of doing so.