Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Largo doctor accused of prescribing excessive narcotics

The state has suspended the license of a Largo doctor after an investigation concluded that she prescribed "excessive and inappropriate" quantities of powerful painkillers and anxiety drugs to her patients.

The investigation found that over about 21/2 years, Dr. Michelle Lee Snyder of Snyder Family Medicine prescribed nearly 95,000 tablets and other forms of controlled substances to five patients. The drugs included oxycodone, morphine, methadone and fentanyl, which are used to treat pain, along with Xanax and other anti-anxiety medications.

Snyder could not be reached for comment. An answering machine message at Snyder Family Medicine said "our offices are closed until further notice. To our current patients, please find a new doctor temporarily."

According to the April 9 order suspending Snyder's license, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office reported potential trouble to the state Department of Health on or about July 25, 2008. "Dr. Snyder appeared to be prescribing excessive quantities of controlled substances," the report said.

Those allegations were supported by pharmacy and patient records. The documents showed Snyder prescribed about 17,000 tablets of controlled substances to one patient, identified as "C.D.," over 16 months. The osteopathic medicine expert who reviewed the records said there were ''minimal, if any, office notes" for most patient visits, and that Snyder failed to get an adequate medical history for the patient.

In another case, the investigation found that Snyder prescribed nearly 25,000 tablets, 4,150 prescription lollipops and 22 other boxes of controlled substances to patient "T.B." over two years and three months.

"I don't know how a person can function or their organ system function on this level of medication," the expert wrote.

Based on the findings, the order concluded that Snyder committed medical malpractice in the excessive prescriptions and the lack of medical records to justify the treatments.

The order, signed by state Surgeon General Ana M. Viamonte Ros, suspended Snyder's license and noted that a proceeding seeking formal suspension of discipline of her license will be held later.

Richard Martin can be reached at or (727) 893-8330.

Largo doctor accused of prescribing excessive narcotics 04/22/10 [Last modified: Thursday, April 22, 2010 9:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Tarpon Springs man killed after three cars hit him on U.S. 19 in Holiday


    A Tarpon Springs man was killed Wednesday night in Holiday after he was struck by three cars as he attempted to cross U.S. 19, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

  2. Siesta Beach tops Dr. Beach's rankings of best locations in America


    Three beaches in Florida made it on a highly coveted list of the top 10 in America this year, ranked by Dr. Stephen Leatherman, a.k.a. "Dr. Beach."

    This May 18, 2017 photo shows Siesta Beach on Siesta Key in Sarasota, Fla. Siesta Beach is No. 1 on the list of best beaches for the summer of 2017 compiled by Stephen Leatherman, also known as Dr. Beach, a professor at Florida International University. [Chris O'Meara | Associated Press]
  3. Tattooed 'Joker' accused of pointing gun at Miami traffic

    Bizarre News

    MIAMI — Police in Miami-Dade County have managed to arrest the Joker without Batman's help following reports of a green-haired man with tattoos on his face pointing a gun at traffic.

    This photo provided by the Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department shows Lawrence Sullivan, who was arrested in Miami-Dade County, Fla., on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, and charged with carrying a concealed firearm. Police say the self-described "tattoo model" was pointing a gun at moving vehicles. [Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department via AP]
  4. Deputies: Two men, teen intentionally set fire, left it to burn within Weedon Island Preserve


    ST. PETERSBURG –– Two men and a teen face charges after deputies say they deliberately started a fire within Weedon Island Preserve last month.

    Adam Grote, 19, left, and Brandon Kholos, 20, along with a 17-year-old, face charges after deputies say they intentionally started a fire on April 15, 2017, that burned about six acres on Googe Island within Weedon Island Preserve in St. Petersburg. [Pinellas County Sheriff's Office]
  5. Police chief: Manchester searches turn up valuable info in concert bombing


    MANCHESTER, England — Home searches across Manchester have uncovered important items for the investigation into the concert bombing that left 22 people dead, Manchester's police chief announced Thursday, while other British authorities complained bitterly about information leaks blamed on U.S. officials.

    A police officer at the scene at an address in Nuneaton, England Thursday May 25, 2017 where they arrested a seventh suspect in the investigation into the Manchester Arena bombing. British police have arrested a seventh person in connection with the Manchester Arena bombing. The man was held Wednesday after police carried out searches in the English town of Nuneaton, which is about 161 kilometers (100 miles) south of Manchester. [Joe Giddens | PA via AP]