“Lyme Literate” Doctor Pled Guilty to Sexually Assaulting Female Patients

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Peter Fabulian was a doctor of osteopathy who practiced in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. As is typical for those considered “Lyme literate”, Fabulian had no recognized advanced credentials in infectious disease. A 2010 Police Criminal Complaint alleged that Fabulian touched several female patients in a suggestive or sexual manner during medical examinations without consent.

In December 2010, Fabulian pled guilty to two counts of indecent assault. He was sentenced to 1-23 months imprisonment followed by five months electronic home confinement, and probation for two years.

The Pennsylvania Board of Osteopathic Medicine indefinitely suspended Fabulian’s license to practice medicine for no less than five years. The Board also discovered that Fabulian “actively practiced medicine for about six years without malpractice insurance.”

According to an Order Continuing Suspension by the Board, prior to pleading guilty, Fabulian “denied any improper sexual misconduct with Patients #1 and #2” and “presented a packet of patient testimonials as to the efficacy of his practice.”

As reported in a 2006 article, Fabulian claimed to have treated Lyme patients for 6 years. He was quoted as saying, “I see at least 200 Lyme patients a month here, probably 15 new patients a week.”

This is an absurd number of Lyme patients for one family doctor to be treating, even in a state like Pennsylvania with many real cases of Lyme disease. Remember, real Lyme disease is curable with a short course of generic antibiotics.

The Board Order alleged of Fabulian (“Respondent”):

  • According to the police criminal complaint, a female patient (Patient #1) reported to the Kennett Square Police Department that during an appointment she had with Respondent in October 2008, Respondent grabbed the collar of her blouse and looked down at her breasts, and that Patient #1 pushed his hands away from her body.
  • Patient #1 reported that Respondent hugged her and kissed her on the neck, that Respondent kissed her approximately ten times, that Respondent licked her neck, and that Respondent told her, “You taste so good.”
  • According to the police criminal complaint, a female patient (Patient #2) reported to the Kennett Square Police Department that during an appointment she had with Respondent in May 2010, Respondent hugged her tightly during the examination and kissed her on the lips, telling her he wanted to take in her scent, and that Patient #2 pulled away from Respondent.
  • Patient #2 reported that Respondent kissed her on her neck and grabbed her right hand and placed it on his groin area, and that Patient #2 could feel his erection.

The Inquirer described Fabulian’s sentencing as follows:

Assistant District Attorney Andrea Cardamone, who sought a six-month jail term, said that after Fabulian was charged with assaulting two women, others came forward. She said that two were within the statute of limitations and that the District Attorney’s Office agreed not to file additional charges in exchange for Fabulian’s cooperation.

She said the agreement also included a provision that the court would hear about the other two cases to show a pattern.

During a hearing that lasted nearly three hours, Cardamone presented two witnesses and read a letter from a third. The women are not being identified by The Inquirer because of the nature of the offenses.

Both described Fabulian’s sexual overtures as an excruciating breach of trust. The first woman said she had to wait a year and a half for charges to be filed after contacting police because authorities said another victim would bolster her case.

The Delaware County Daily Times reported:

Speaking to Judge David Bortner before he imposed sentence, the victims said the assaults left them severely traumatized.

“What he did to me will affect me for years to come,” said a patient who Dr. Peter Fabulian groped after she came to him for treatment. “He has taken away the sacred trust that a patient has with a physician.”

“I felt dirty, foolish and embarrassed for something I didn’t do,” another woman wrote to Bortner. She said she still feels nauseous when she thinks of his smile as he began fondling her. “His behavior was purposeful, calculated and chronic.”


The Delaware County Daily Times: Kennett Square doc gets jail for fondling patients

Bucks Local News: Chester County doctor pleads guilty to sexually assaulting female patients

The Southern Chester County Weeklies: Kennett Square doctor loses license for sexual assault

The Philadelphia Inquirer: Doctor sentenced in indecent assaults on patients

LancasterOnline: Strasburg doc to prison

The Philadelphia Inquirer: Lyme disease underreported, experts say


Pennsylvania State Board of Osteopathic Medicine: Peter Fabulian Final Order

Pennsylvania State Board of Osteopathic Medicine: Peter Fabulian Memorandum Order Continuing Temporary Suspension

New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners: Peter Fabulian Final Order of Discipline

United States Bankruptcy Court: Opinion about one of Fabulian’s patients