SJ Man Treated MS Patient With Watermelon, Hot Tub

A San Jose man posing as a doctor allegedly treated an MS patient who later died with phony alternative medicine.

By Chris Roberts
|  Wednesday, Jun 15, 2011  |  Updated 12:42 PM PDT
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SJ Man Treated MS Patient With Watermelon, Hot Tub

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A San Jose man could land in prison after he allegedly charged multiple sclerosis patients $300 an hour for "phony" treatments such as eating watermelon and soaking in a hot tub, according to prosecutors.

Eugene Vasin, 54, had no medical license and only brief training before treating Ronelle Kotter, of Belmont, for the illness between 2009 and 2010. Kotter died in December after years of fighting MS.

Vasin told Kotter she did not have MS and had Lyme disease instead, according to the San Francisco Examiner. Alternative treatments to his alternative diagnoses included reducing the medications given by Kotter's real doctors, injections of vitamin B-12, and hot tub treatments to aid her kidneys, according to the newspaper.

Vasin also treated Kotter's daughter. Some of his treatments worked, she said, and Ronelle Kotter believed in them whole-heartedly.

Kotter’s family, however, had to fight Vasin to convince Ronelle to pursue traditional medicine. They eventually reported him to police, after he billed Ronelle Kotter for everything from sending e-mails and receiving phone calls to driving to her home, the newspaper reported.

Vasin will stand trial beginning on July 11.

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