State Board of Registration for the Healing Arts v. McDonagh
Supreme Court of Missouri
123 S.W.3d 146 (2003)
Dr. McDonagh (defendant) was licensed in Missouri as an osteopathic physician and surgeon who used alternative medical treatments in his practice, including ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid (EDTA) chelation therapy to treat atherosclerosis and other conditions. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had only approved chelation therapy to be used to remove heavy metals from within the body. However, the FDA did not prohibit the use of medications to treat conditions that the drugs were not specifically designed for. This “off-label” use of therapies and medications was common practice in the medical profession, including the off-label use of chelation therapy to treat atherosclerosis and other vascular conditions. Two published studies concluded that the treatment was ineffective in treating vascular disease. The American Medical Association relied upon the studies when it issued a position statement calling the EDTA chelation therapy experimental without proven efficacy. The State Board of Registration for the Healing Arts (the Board) (plaintiff) subsequently adopted a rule stating that EDTA chelation therapy was of no medical value except for uses specifically approved by the FDA. McDonagh continued to use the EDTA chelation therapy pursuant to the ACAM protocol and had patients sign informed consent documents. Thereafter, the Board filed a 13-count complaint against McDonagh after receiving a number of inquiries regarding his use of the therapy and claimed that he had endangered his patients. The Administrative Hearing Commission (AHC) held a hearing on the matter and found no evidence of harm from the chelation therapy and did not discipline McDonagh. The circuit court affirmed the decision of the AHC and the Board appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Smith, J.)
Concurrence/Dissent (Wolf, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 166,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,800 briefs, keyed to 187 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.