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Police Exhibit #69 (page 4)

Dr. Joel Yelland:  Red Flags

Justice Ministry:  Exhibit Numbers

This document, called the History/Affidavit, was processed by three different branches of Sask Justice. Each recipient assigned his own exhibit number:

Sgt. James Bracken labeled his copy:
Police Exhibit #69.

Prosecutor Fred Dehm labeled his copy:
Crown Exhibit #82.

When the document was filed in Saskatoon Provincial Court at the Preliminary Inquiry, Judge Singer assigned this final number:
Court Exhibit D-2.

Sgt. Bracken Police Exhibit #69
Fred Dehm Crown Exhibit #82
Judge Singer Court Exhibit D-2

Supplementary Page

Record Transfer from Dr. Yelland to Laurier Drive Clinic

In June/01 with finality I made a decision to leave the clinic of Dr. Yelland. I then went to Laurier Drive clinic where I was accepted on a temporary basis and for refuge until I found a permanent physician. To provide a serious level of care (including prescriptions), Laurier Clinic needed to review my former medical chart. To meet the standard protocol, on August 26/01 I signed a Consent to Release Records. Laurier Clinic sent this release to Dr. Yelland, since he was my former physicians.

Dr. Yelland would certainly have recognized abruptly that my relationship with him was irrevocably ended. The record transfer should have been standardized and simple; normally, the former doctor loans the chart to the new clinic, who photocopies what they need, and who then return the original file. But Dr. Yelland set up hurdles meant to make this step impossible.

Dr. Yelland refused to lend the full chart, but offered only a two-page summary. The most significant part of the chart includes test results (such as Bone Scan and CT Scan reports, and lab tests), but Dr. Yelland stated that before copying these, I must pay a large amount of funds up front. He knew that 75% of the chart did comprise history records and textbook pages which I myself had brought in to his office and given to him. That is, he wanted to bill me for copying my own material back to me. Dr. Yelland further knew that his bill was beyond my financial means; I live on a small disability pension and his bill amounted to my entire month's food budget.

Dr. Yelland expressed all this in antagonistic letters to me dated August 28 and August 31, 2001. If I had not been able to overcome this hurdle to transferring records, I would have been forced to return to Pacific Avenue, to resume as his patient. Instead, I used a Canadian Freedom of Information request form to transfer my chart in orderly fashion to the Laurier Clinic.

Red Flag:  Violent Appointment with Dr. Yelland

One of my appointments with Dr. Yelland, on the date January 23/01, was the keystone in understanding his character:

During that appointment, Dr. Yelland was verbally violent: He bragged about destroying my relationship with my rheumatologist Dr. Baker; he blamed me for the fact that a specific medicine (Gabapentin) didn't cure my foot condition; and he spoke the unusual phrase “red flags” vehemently and repeatedly.

In fact, the phrase “red flags” had appeared that day, in the popular Ann Landers column, in a letter describing the abusive process. I didn't see the newspaper until the next day, but when I did I saw a column about possessiveness and the narrowing of the victim's world; isolation of the victim “raised special red flags.” I kept the column from that date. This was significant: the first time I realized that Dr. Yelland's destruction of my medical relationships was deliberate, and not random accident.

Georgena S. Sil
June 3, 2002

Explanation:  Red Flags

Dr. Yelland's wrathful repetition of the phrase “red flags” arose because he had been challenged earlier in the day by someone over the Ann Landers column. The traits described in the column – possessiveness and narrowing of the victim’s world – happened to be a close match to Yelland's own conduct. My educated guess is that one or more of his family members took him to task on the insights in that column. Yelland then lashed out at patients.

The Full Gabapentin Narrative

In 2000 Dr. Yelland eagerly handed me two research papers describing the off-label use of Gabapentin to treat neuropathic pain. Yelland was certain that this Rx would alleviate the Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy in my right foot. On his advice, I tried Gabapentin 3 separate times over a month, with this consistent result: Gabapentin did not improve my RSD pain at all, but did cause a side-effect of a constant, diffuse headache.

I stopped taking Gabapentin. On January 23/01 I explained the reasons to Yelland and advised I would not need a prescription refill. Yelland became waspish, acting as if the patient (the person) was at fault because the tissues of the foot did not normalize under the impact of Gabapentin. His anger made no sense until I researched a few facts:

  • Gabapentin is the generic or chemical name for Neurontin, manufactured by Pfizer.
  • Yelland should not have prescribed Gabapentin at all for my RSD condition. Four years earlier, the medical world already knew Gabapentin was ineffective for neuropathic pain. In 1996, Pfizer employee Dr. David Franklin filed a whistleblower lawsuit on the basis that 88% of the revenue from Neurontin was from off-label uses, and much of the evidence supporting those off-label uses had been outright fabricated.
  • The 1996 lawsuit claimed: Pfizer illegally marketed Neurontin for treatment of ailments not approved by the FDA including migraines, neuropathic pain, and nociceptive pain. The company knew the drug was ineffective for those conditions.
  • Despite the lawsuit, Pfizer made neuropathic pain a major focus of their marketing strategy during the early 2000s.
  • In 2004 Franklin won his Qui Tam lawsuit. The US court ruled: Pfizer manipulated the design of clinical trials; stalled or stopped the publication of negative study results; tampered with data to make Neurontin look more effective than it was; and used questionable tactics to enhance Neurontin's image and increase sales.

The marketing tactics were symbiotic, offering profit to the doctor as well as to Pfizer Inc. In this context we understand Dr. Yelland's rage when Gabapentin (Neurontin) proved ineffective for my case of Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy: When the written prescriptions ceased, Yelland's financial kickbacks from Pfizer ceased.

Georgena S. Sil
Saskatoon, Canada
Physicist & Technical Writer
Alumnus: University of British Columbia

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