The Towson cardiologist accused of placing cardiac stents into patients who didn't need them had a chance to defend himself Wednesday before the Maryland Board of Physicians, which is deciding whether the doctor should retain his license.

The board that oversees physicians' licensing and discipline had charged Dr. Mark G. Midei last June with falsifying patients' records so it would appear they needed treatment.

Hearings are closed to the public, but Midei's lawyer, Stephen B. Snyder, said the doctor "was able to articulate all the issues before the full board, and I think they were receptive."

Midei said before the hearing that he never made decisions on stent procedures alone and did not benefit financially from additional stent procedures.

In addition to the board action, the doctor is also facing private lawsuits from patients at St. Joseph Medical Center. He has filed a countersuit against the hospital, contending that it has damaged his career.

The hospital removed Midei from duty in 2009 after learning of the stent allegations. It launched an investigation going back two years and sent warning letters to 600 of his patients that they may have had the mesh stents implanted into their veins unnecessarily.

Snyder said there is no timetable for a decision from the board, which could revoke his medical license, fine him or impose another sanction.

Since the Midei allegations came to light, the state has said it is investigating at least one other hospital for its high number of stent procedures.

meredith.cohn@baltsun.com