United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
W. DARRAH United States District Court Judge.
filed an Amended Complaint, alleging deliberate indifference
to his medical needs pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Plaintiff filed a pro se Motion for Medical
Injunction  and a Motion for a Preliminary Injunction
 through counsel. For the reasons discussed below,
Plaintiff’s Motions [12, 41] are granted in part and
denied in part.
is an inmate at Stateville Correctional Center.
Plaintiff’s Amended Complaint generally alleges that
Defendants have been deliberately indifferent to his medical
needs. Specifically, Plaintiff alleges that he has repeatedly
complained about pain in his legs and throat and that
Defendants have not treated him correctly, have not sent him
to a specialist, or given him pain medication. Plaintiff also
alleges that he has not received proper follow-up care for a
surgery to remove a chronic abscess on December 31, 2015.
obtain a preliminary injunction, the moving party must make
an initial showing that (1) it will suffer irreparable harm
in the period before final resolution of its claims; (2)
traditional legal remedies are inadequate; and (3) the claim
has some likelihood of success on the merits.” BBL,
Inc. v. City of Angola, 809 F.3d 317, 323-24 (7th Cir.
2015) (citing Girl Scouts of Manitou Council,
Inc. v. Girl Scouts of U.S. of Am., Inc., 549 F.3d 1079,
1086 (7th Cir. 2008)). “If the moving party makes this
showing, the court weighs the factors against one another,
assessing whether the balance of harms favors the moving
party or whether the harm to other parties or the public is
sufficiently weighty that the injunction should be
denied.” BBL, Inc., 809 F.3d at 324 (citing
ACLU of Ill. v. Alvarez, 679 F.3d 583, 589 (7th Cir.
2012)). The Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”)
states that “injunctive relief to remedy
unconstitutional prison conditions must be ‘narrowly
drawn, ’ extend ‘no further than necessary’
to remedy the constitutional violation, and use the
‘least intrusive means’ to correct the violation
of the federal right.” Westefer v. Neal, 682
F.3d 679, 681 (7th Cir. 2012) (quoting 18 U.S.C. §
mandatory injunction is “an injunction requiring an
affirmative act by the defendant[s].” Graham v.
Med. Mut. of Ohio, 130 F.3d 293, 295 (7th Cir. 1997).
“Because a mandatory injunction requires the court to
command the defendant to take a particular action,
‘mandatory preliminary writs are ordinarily cautiously
viewed and sparingly issued.’” Id.
(quoting Jordan v. Wolke, 593 F.2d 772, 774 (7th
pro se request for an injunction, Plaintiff alleges
medical issues with his legs and throat and states that
Defendants have denied treatment and pain medication.
Plaintiff requests that Defendants send him to a specialist.
In the motion through his attorney, Plaintiff again alleges
medical issues with his legs and throat, as well as issues
with rectal bleeding, and again states that Defendants have
denied treatment and pain medication. Plaintiff requests
immediate follow-up care for his surgical wounds, an
appointment with an outside physician for his other
conditions, and medication for his pain and swelling.
Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and
unusual punishment, which embodies ‘broad and
idealistic concepts of dignity, civilized standards,
humanity, and decency, ’ prohibits punishments that are
incompatible with ‘the evolving standards of decency
that mark the progress of a maturing society.’”
Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816,
828 (7th Cir. 2009) (quoting Estelle v. Gamble, 429
U.S. 97, 102 (1976)). To violate the Eighth Amendment, a
prison medical official must be deliberately indifferent to a
prisoner’s health, that is, know there is a substantial
risk and disregard that risk. Farmer v. Brennan, 511
U.S. 825, 837 (1994). “The federal courts will not
interfere with a doctor’s decision to pursue a
particular course of treatment unless that decision
represents so significant a departure from accepted
professional standards or practices that it calls into
question whether the doctor actually was exercising his
professional judgment.” Pyles v. Fahim, 771
F.3d 403, 409 (7th Cir. 2014) (citing Roe v. Elyea,
631 F.3d 843, 857 (7th Cir.2011); Sain v. Wood, 512
F.3d 886, 895 (7th Cir. 2008)). Simple disagreement with a
doctor’s medical judgment is not enough to prove
deliberate indifference. Berry v. Peterman, 604 F.3d
435, 441 (7th Cir. 2010). “A medical professional is
entitled to deference in treatment decisions unless no
minimally competent professional would have so responded
under those circumstances.” Pyles, 771 F.3d at
409 (internal citations and quotations omitted).
requests an appointment with an outside physician for his
alleged leg and throat conditions and medication for his pain
and swelling. Defendants argue that Plaintiff has been
receiving proper treatment and that there is no likelihood of
success on the merits. Plaintiff contends that Defendants
have not diagnosed his conditions; however, the medical
records and affidavit provided by Defendants contradict this.
Plaintiff has been diagnosed with complications due to
obesity, diabetes, hypertension, allergies, and asthma.
Plaintiff has been prescribed blood pressure medication,
insulin, various antibiotics, anti-acids, steroidal
anti-inflammatories, and medications for his asthma and
allergies, among other things. Plaintiff was also seen
repeatedly after his surgery for wound inspection, but the
medical records indicate that he didn’t want to be seen
anymore. Plaintiff also argues that Defendants have persisted
“in a course of treatment known to be ineffective,
” which has been “recognized as a violation of
the Eighth Amendment.” Greeno v. Daley, 414
F.3d 645, 655 (7th Cir. 2005) (citing Kelley v.
McGinnis, 899 F.2d 612, 616-17 (7th Cir. 1990)). But the
medical records and Obaisi’s affidavit show that they
have tried a variety of treatments for Plaintiff’s
complaints. Defendants have not been deliberately indifferent
to his alleged leg and throat conditions. Plaintiff’s
request for a preliminary injunction is denied as to his
request for an appointment with an outside physician for his
alleged leg and throat conditions.
do not address Plaintiff’s request for a different type
of pain medication, aside from stating that it has no merit.
However, the medical records and Obaisi’s affidavit
only go up to the treatment provided through February 7,
2016. Plaintiff has attached grievances filed after that
date, stating that he has requested, and been refused,
effective medication for his extreme pain. (Dkt. 41, Exhs. A,
B.) Without those records or any argument by Defendants, it
is impossible to determine whether a minimally competent
professional would have responded to Plaintiff’s
requests in the same manner. See Sain, 512 F.3d at
894-95 (“A medical professional is entitled to
deference in treatment decisions unless no minimally
competent professional would have so responded under those
circumstances.”). As to this issue, Plaintiff has made
the initial showing that he will suffer irreparable harm,
that legal remedies are inadequate, and that his claim has
some likelihood of success on the merits. Further, the
balance of harms weighs in Plaintiffs favor, as there is very
little harm in Defendants’ providing effective pain
medication to Plaintiff. Plaintiff’s request for a
preliminary injunction is granted as to his request for
effective pain medication.
extent that Plaintiff requests to see a specialist for a
follow-up to his December 31, 2015 surgery to remove an
abscess, that claim is mooted by an appointment that was
scheduled for August 1, 2016. Plaintiffs request for a
preliminary injunction is denied as ...