A former Muscatine doctor struck a plea deal in his drugs-for-sex case that wiped 94 counts from his record.
David Gierlus, 59, pleaded guilty to one count of unlawfully distributing a Schedule III controlled substance, hydrocodone, and faces 10 years in prison.
He’s admitting that by Feb. 9, 2012, he had become sexually involved with a patient and prescribed her the narcotic numerous times, according to his plea agreement.
She scheduled an office visit with him on Feb. 9, 2012, complaining of pain, and Gierlus prescribed her a stronger dosage of hydrocodone without a thorough physical examination and without further efforts to determine the cause of the pain, the plea agreement states.
Gierlus had a family practice at Trinity Muscatine Clinic. Trinity Regional Health System spokeswoman Erin Lounsberry previously said he no longer sees patients.
Gierlus was licensed to practice as a doctor of osteopathic medicine in Iowa on July 15, 1987. His license was set to expire March 1.
As part of his medical practice, he saw and treated patients for various ailments including complaints of pain, his plea agreement states.
He initially was charged last summer, and by Jan. 16, as many as 95 counts had been added to his case. The government claimed he dispensed hundreds of prescriptions for powerful controlled substances to more than 30 women, all outside the scope of legitimate medical practice and often in exchange for sexual favors. He pleaded guilty to one count ahead of going to trial in April.