The medical license for a Pikeville physician was suspended recently following allegations she over-prescribed narcotics and opioids to more than a dozen patients.

According to an emergency order issued by the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure, the license of osteopathic physician Dr. Crystal K. Compton, who practices at a clinic near downtown Pikeville, was suspended under an emergency suspension order issued Aug. 23. The suspension was the result of an investigation prompted by anonymous tips that controlled substances were being issued by Compton in quantities and combinations which may not be appropriate.

The order of suspension said the investigation of Compton noted several patterns of concern on Compton’s Kentucky All-Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting, or KASPER, records for the period of Jan. 1, 2017 through Feb. 26, 2019. Those concerns included long-term use of one or more controlled substances; combinations of controlled substances favored by persons who abuse or divert controlled substances; prescribing of opiates in high doses; and family members obtaining the same or similar medications. The order also said 16 patients were identified who were, “illustrative of these concerns and recommended further review to determine if the licensee rendered appropriate medical care.

The report said that, although Compton had requested more than 2,500 KASPER reports on patients during the reviewed period, she was out of compliance with KASPER requirements relative to the 16 identified patients.

A review of the 16 identified patients was completed in July 2019, the report said, and found that Compton failed or departed from acceptable medical practices, prescribed controlled substance to an immediate family member, prescribed medications in amounts she knew, or should have known to be excessive and demonstrated “gross ignorance, gross incompetence or gross negligence.”

The report detailed the findings for each of the identified patients and, in some cases, alleges that Compton kept bringing the patients back in order to reinforce their habit of dependence on opioids or other controlled substances. One of the patients, the findings show, was prescribed “heavy doses” of a combination of drugs including oxycodone, methadone, Klonopin, Soma and Ambien.

“This could easily cause overdose and death,” the findings state, adding that the patient was not referred to pain specialists. “... Patient just being handed over combination of controlled medicine, leading to vicious cycle of dependence/tolerance and addiction.”

Another patient, the findings note, was treated with “mega doses of opioids, benzodiazepines and unusually high dose of Adipex” for a prolonged period. The patient also complained of issues including swelling and rectal bleeding without those conditions being addressed, other than having pain pills refilled.

The findings also note that one of Compton’s patients was an immediate family member who was prescribed heavy doses of narcotics with early refills while other noted medical conditions, including COPD, went unaddressed.

According to the report, Compton issued a response to the investigation’s findings, stating that as of Aug. 12, she would no longer be issuing prescriptions for narcotics and that patients receiving them may be issued taper prescriptions or be referred to pain management offices.

According to the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure’s website, Compton, of Pikeville, is still listed as having an “active” license which is set to expire in February 2020. She is a 2006 graduate of the Pikeville College School of Osteopathic Medicine, the website said. According to the emergency order of suspension, Compton is represented by Pikeville attorney Steve Owens.

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