PAWTUCKET – A state Health Department disciplinary board has suspended a local dentist’s authority to prescribe controlled substances after providing himself and others with drugs that have nothing to do with pulling teeth.
In one incident, Demetrius James Photopoulos, D.D.S., prescribed the growth hormone omnitrope to a three-year-old in 2012, said the Board of Examiners in Dentistry. The child was given the drug for five months.
The omnitrope incident was one of five examples the board cited in which Photopoulos allegedly prescribed drugs outside the practice of dentistry. The board said he had improperly prescribed medications to himself and controlled substances to a family member.
A disciplinary order released Thursday by the Department of Health did not identify the drugs in the latter cases. In addition to the omnitrope incident, however, the order said Photopoulos prescribed testosterone to a 22-year-old man in June 2011 and oxandrolone, an anabolic steroid, to a 14-year-old girl, in January 2009.
“The Respondent has a pattern of prescribing controlled substances to patients in a manner that does not meet the standards of acceptable practice,” the board said. “The public health, safety or welfare imperatively requires emergency action.”
Health Director Michael Fine signed off an an order to suspend Photopoulos’s controlled substance registration Wednesday pending an administrative hearing.
Photopoulos practices dentistry from an office located at 123 School St. A graduate of the Georgetown University School of Dentistry, he was licensed as a dentist in Rhode Island in 1968.
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