Contraindications: Dr. Iraj Derakhshan

Published on
May 28, 2009

When does it make sense to tamper with a time-released medication? If the drug is a controlled substance, like the painkiller OxyContin, the answer is: never.

Doing so damages the time-released properties of the drug and can lead to a massive dose all at once. This is what makes OxyContin such a great high for people who crush it, and such a long, painful addiction for them, too.

A patient of Dr. Iraj Derakhshan complained to the West Virginia Board of Medicine that the doctor had told him to cut his time-released medication in half, according to medical board records. The medical board did not reveal the name of the drug.

Derakhshan "denied advising said patient to take the medication in an improper manner, instead Dr. Derakhshan asserts that he gave the complainant proper instructions on how to take the medication and that as long as the complainant followed those instructions, there was no danger presented," the board wrote..

Another patient complained about the same thing. Again, the board did not name the drug.

The doctor didn't waver. He felt so confident that he had done the right thing that he responded to the board through his attorney.

The medical board investigated and decided that something was amiss. Not only was Derakhshan doling out controlled substances with bad instructions, he was seeing too many patients. The board ordered him to take a controlled substances prescribing course and to see no more than 25 patients in a 24 hour period. Medical boards in Ohio and California took similar actions.