Jackson County

Terry Millette, a Coast neurologist facing multiple lawsuits, is suspending his practice

Before his diagnoses were challenged, Dr. Terry Millette explained his treatments

Dr. Terry Millette, neurologist who was fired by Singing River Health Systems, talks about diagnosing and treating multiple sclerosis.
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Dr. Terry Millette, neurologist who was fired by Singing River Health Systems, talks about diagnosing and treating multiple sclerosis.

A neurologist facing lawsuits alleging he misdiagnosed patients with multiple sclerosis is suspending his practice for health reasons, his attorneys said.

Dr. Terry Millette made the announcement in an email sent by The Burrow Law Firm in Pascagoula.

Millette opened his own office in Pascagoula about two years ago after allegations began to surface and the Singing River Health System ended his contract.

He has “recently discovered health conditions,” the email said. “While Dr. Millette’s prognosis is unknown at this time, he hopes to return to full health as quickly as possible so he can resume care and treatment of his patients.”

At least 17 lawsuits have been filed against Millette and the SRHS. One former patient alleges she was misdiagnosed in 2008 and was still receiving treatment in November 2016, when the SRHS sent letters to Millette’s patients. The letters said a review was under way of Millette’s diagnosis and treatment of MS patients and he was no longer affiliated with the SRHS.

Brice Wiggins hears patients' lack of trust of Singing River Hospital.

Attorneys began filing lawsuits in Jackson County Circuit Court in late 2017 after patients began complaining that Millette had told them they had MS, a crippling disease, but they didn’t have MS.

Millette advised his patients with scheduled appointments to call his office at 228-284-3800 for a referral to another neurologist. The doctor won’t be able to refill prescriptions during his absence since he won’t be able to examine patients, he said.

Millette provided this statement:

“I have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from my patients and fellow physicians over the past two years. Unfortunately, I have recently been made aware of health issues which require I suspend my practice for an undetermined period of time. I ask that everyone keep me and my wife, Trudy, in their prayers and thoughts.This will provide me with great motivation to return to full health and resume my practice as soon as possible.”

After the SRHS cut ties with Millette, he told the Sun Herald the split was “personal.” He said he had 70 patients at the hospital — less than 1 percent of its patients — and he was diagnosing based on the latest available standards to catch MS before it gets out of control.

Popular neurologist, Dr. Terry Millette, talks with the Sun Herald for the first time since he left Singing River. Video by Karen Nelson/Sun Herald klnelson@sunherald.com

Robin Fitzgerald, 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews