Fort Myers doctor reaching settlement with state in stem cell patient's death


Photo by Allie Garza

Dr. Zannos Grekos, a cardiologist whose practice is in Bonita Springs, speaks with a seminar attendant after one of his educational seminars about stem cell treatment, using one's own stem cells, for treating heart disease and other medical conditions, on Monday, March 14, 2011, at the Collier County Library. Allie Garza/Staff

FORT MYERS A Fort Myers physician whose license was restricted for his involvement in a controversial stem cell treatment on a patient who died has a settlement in the works with state regulators.

Terms of the deal between Dr. Konstantine Yankopolus and the Florida Department of Health weren't immediately available Monday.

"It's in draft form," said Yankopolus' attorney, Steven Ramunni, of Fort Myers.

Yankopolus said Monday he expects the restriction on his license to be lifted soon.

"I want to stay in the world of service," he said. "Let's move on."

An obstetrician for years before switching to a general practice, Yankopolus assisted Dr. Zannos Grekos, a Bonita Springs cardiologist, on March 2 in a stem cell procedure on a 77-year-old Indiana man. The patient, Richard Poling, came to Grekos for stem cell treatment against his pulmonary hypertension.

Grekos accepted the patient even though he was under a 2011 state order not to do anything with stem cells or bone marrow aspirate in his Bonita Springs practice. The order came after the death of a breast cancer patient treated by Grekos, who had developed a following for sending patients to the Dominican Republic for stem cell procedures for their chronic medical conditions.

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Fort Myers doctor reaching settlement with state in stem cell patient's death

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