A NORTH-EAST multiple sclerosis sufferer has defended controversial treatment from a doctor who is facing a General Medical Council (GMC) misconduct hearing.

Four years ago Kevin Cooper, 51, from Crook, County Durham, travelled to Rotterdam, Holland, to have controversial stem cell injections.

To pay for the treatment, Mr Cooper handed over £12,000 to the Preventief Medisch Centrum (PMC) clinic, run by Dr Robert Trossel.

Dr Trossel is before the GMC facing allegations of misconduct involving nine patients who had treatment at the same clinic.

Tom Kark, counsel for the GMC, said there was no evidence that the substance injected into them contained any stem cells.

Mr Kark said Dr Trossel’s method and treatment appears to have been “wholly unscientific”.

But Mr Cooper said his condition immediately improved after the injections.

“What ever they put into me worked. It didn’t stop the progression, but it improved my condition. I felt a lot better,”

he said.

Mr Cooper, who is treasurer of Crook Town Football Club, added: “For me, it worked. I was never guaranteed anything. I paid my money and I was absolutely delighted.”

However, Mr Cooper said the improvement in his condition was only temporary.

“It doesn’t last a long time.

It lasts months rather than years,” he added.

Dr Trossel has denied a series of allegations relating to nine former patients, including exploiting vulnerable patients.

During the GMC hearing, Mr Kark said large sums of money, including cash raised from donations and sponsored events, were handed over to Dr Trossel and his associates in the “desperate”

hope that the treatment might improve their disabling condition.

Dr Trossel told the GMC that giving MS patients stem cells was “worth a try”.

He said more than 30 per cent of patients treated at his clinic received stem cell therapy.

Mr Kark said in the majority of cases the treatment had no effect on their condition, with those who felt they had benefited returning to their previous state of ill health within a few months.

In October 2006, Dr Trossel was ordered by the Dutch authorities to cease stem cell treatment, the GMC heard.

The hearing is due to last until next month.