Medtronic Paid Surgeon While He Was in the Army

Medtronic has acknowledged that it paid a former Army surgeon, who is now accused of falsifying research about one of its products, to give speeches and train other doctors on the company’s behalf while he was in the military.

The disclosure, made this week as Medtronic sought to clarify comments by its chief executive, shows that the financial entanglements between Medtronic and the surgeon, Dr. Timothy R. Kuklo, were more extensive than previously acknowledged.

Army officials have accused Dr. Kuklo of falsifying research about the benefits of a Medtronic bone-growth product called Infuse in treating American soldiers who suffered severe leg injuries in Iraq. Until mid-2006, Dr. Kuklo, an orthopedic surgeon, worked at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington.

Dr. Kuklo, now an associate professor of medicine at Washington University in St. Louis, has declined requests to speak about the incident, which has drawn increasing attention over the last month. Medtronic, which says it was not involved in the discredited research study, has only gradually disclosed the extent of its financial ties to Dr. Kuklo.

Josh Sandberg

Josh Sandberg is the President of Ortho Spine Partners and Partner for The De Angelis Group. He also serves as Co-Founder and Editor of OrthoSpineNews.

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  1. Old News is Good News! Medtronic as usual likes to say the right things, the question is do they do the right things? As for Dr. Kuklo, something is truly amiss in this fiasco considering that many of his peers and spine industry associates have nothing but great things to say about him. Hopefully, he will prevail. If not, it will be a blemish on truly a stellar career and service to his country.

  2. What is going to happen to the execs at Medtronic? Are they ever going to have to answer for this?

    And by extension, all the other CEO's like Ray Elliott and the ilk who fleeced Medicare by fraudulent pay for play schemes…

    Let's hope that they clean up a once ethical industry!

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