United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
PETER C. MAUTER, #M24019, Plaintiff,
MOHAMMED SIDDIQUI, M.D.,  DR. TROST, M.D., DR. CALDWELL, M.D., DR. RITZ, JOHN DOES #1 TO 3, WEXFORD HEALTH SOURCES, INC., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. YANDLE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Peter Mauter, an inmate of the Illinois Department of
Corrections currently incarcerated at Lawrence Correctional
Center (“Lawrence”), brings this action pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for alleged deprivations of his
constitutional rights. He asserts deliberate indifference
claims under the Eighth Amendment and a state law medical
negligence claim. He requests monetary damages and injunctive
case is now before the Court for preliminary review of the
Amended Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Under
Section 1915A, the Court is required to screen prisoner
Complaints to filter out non-meritorious claims. See
28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). Any portion of a Complaint that is
legally frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted, or requests money damages from a
defendant who by law is immune from such relief must be
dismissed. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). At this juncture, the
factual allegations of the pro se Amended Complaint
are to be liberally construed. Rodriguez v. Plymouth
Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
makes the following allegations in the Amended Complaint: In
2006, Plaintiff was diagnosed with degenerative spine
disease, including moderate to severe hypertrophic changes to
the L4-L5 facet joints. (Doc. 13, pp. 6, 25). When he entered
Menard Correctional Center (“Menard”) in 2012, he
was under medical care with the Veteran's Administration
(“VA”) for the degenerative spine disease.
Id. Plaintiff was treated by Dr. Fuentes from 2012
to 2014. Id. His VA records were forward to Dr.
Fuentes and became part of his medical records at Menard.
Id. In 2014, Dr. Fuentes requested that Wexford
Health Sources, Inc. (“Wexford”) send Plaintiff to
an outside hospital for spinal surgery due to his declining
2014 to late 2017, Plaintiff treated with Dr. Trost, a
Wexford physician, who denied Plaintiff medical treatment
despite Plaintiff's reports of reduced mobility, severe
pain with neurological symptoms, and inadequacy of Naprosyn
as a pain reliever. (Doc. 13, pp. 7-8). Dr. Trost repeatedly
told Plaintiff that he had arthritis. (Doc. 13, p. 8). Dr.
Trost concealed Plaintiff's true diagnosis as part of an
unlawful practice by Wexford to deny Plaintiff medical
treatment for his degenerative spine disease. Id.
treated with Dr. Siddiqui, another Wexford physician, from
2016 to 2018. Id. Plaintiff reported pain down his
legs, intense pain on the right side of his body, pain that
caused him to fall to his knees, reduced mobility, inability
to walk or shower, a significant loss of sleep due to pain,
and that his pain was at a level of 7 out of 10. Id.
Dr. Siddiqui ignored Plaintiff's complaints and failed to
provide an effective pain reliever. (Doc. 13, p. 9). Dr.
Siddiqui also ignored medical records showing that Plaintiff
had advanced spine disease and told him he had arthritis and
was getting old. Id.
2016, Dr. Trost and Dr. Ritz, a collegiate review physician
with Wexford, denied Plaintiff an MRI to monitor the
degenerative spine disease. (Doc. 13, pp. 4, 9). They knew
that ten years had elapsed since the diagnosis at the VA.
(Doc. 13, p. 9). At that time, Dr. Trost, Dr. Ritz, and Dr.
Siddiqui knew Plaintiff was in “agonizing pain and was
entering bedridden status” but denied him medical
treatment and effective pain medication. Id. Later
in 2016, Dr. Trost and Dr. Ritz again denied Plaintiff an
MRI. Id. They ordered physical therapy, which
Plaintiff attempted, but collapsed due to severe pain.
Id. Plaintiff was told on multiple occasions that he
would not receive an MRI or further care because it was too
expensive, and Wexford would not pay for it. (Doc. 13, p.
2017, radiology reports showed significant degenerative disc
disease at L4-L5 level that had “further progressed
since the prior examination.” (Doc. 13, pp. 10, 33).
Plaintiff continued to report to Dr. Siddiqui that Naprosyn
was ineffective for pain relief. Id. Dr. Siddiqui
ignored him, provided no pain relief, and told him x-rays
showed only arthritis. Id. By October 2017,
Plaintiff could no longer walk to the dining room.
Id. Siddiqui issued a permit for him to eat in his
cell but did not provide medical treatment or pain relief.
Id. An MRI in January 2018 showed advanced
degenerative spine disease. (Doc. 13, pp. 10, 31-32). Despite
this information, Dr. Ritz and Dr. Siddiqui continued to deny
Plaintiff medical treatment. Id.
2018, Plaintiff was bedridden; he had not been able to shower
for several months and needed assistance to the toilet. (Doc.
13, p. 11). From 2012-2018, Drs. Trost, Ritz, and Siddiqui
had ignored Plaintiff's complaints that Naprosyn did not
alleviate his pain. Id. In April 2018, Dr. Siddiqui
provided Plaintiff with Ultram/Tramadol 150 mg daily, which
was an effective pain reliever. Id. In May 2018, Dr.
Siddiqui issued him a wheelchair. (Doc. 13, pp. 11, 37).
Finally, in 2018, Plaintiff had to undergo “major
spinal surgery to fuse L4-L5, replace disks, and insert metal
plates, metal rods, and screws.” (Doc. 13, pp. 11-12).
2012 to 2018, Dr. Trost, Dr. Siddiqui, Dr. Ritz, and Dr.
Caldwell (all Wexford physicians) refused to place Plaintiff
on chronic clinic to monitor his spine. Id. This
required him to request medical services which delayed
medical treatment. Id.
Siddiqui, Dr. Trost, Dr. Ritz, Dr. Caldwell, and Wexford
failed to inform Plaintiff that chronic use of Naprosyn
causes kidney disease and kidney failure. (Doc. 13, p. 13).
Additionally, from 2012-2018, Defendants, including John Does
#1-3, failed to properly monitor Plaintiff for diseases
caused by chronic NSAID use. Id. Defendants knew
that 1500 mg daily of Naprosyn exceeded minimum safety
guidelines of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
(“FDA”). Id. Dr. Siddiqui knew that 1500
mg of Naprosyn daily was dangerous and should not be used for
long-term pain management for spine disease. Id.
2017, Plaintiff reported “additional symptoms” to
Dr. Caldwell and a blood test confirmed kidney damage.
Id. Dr. Caldwell discontinued Naprosyn, but did not
offer any alternative pain relief for Plaintiff's ongoing
and unresolved pain. (Doc. 13, p. 14). Dr. Siddiqui, Dr.
Trost, Dr. Ritz, Dr. Caldwell, and Wexford have acknowledged
Plaintiff's “serious medical need for kidney care,
but refuse[d] to provide it . . . .” (Doc. 13, p. 14).
on the allegations in the Amended Complaint, the Court finds
it convenient to designate the following Counts:
Count 1: Eighth Amendment claim against Siddiqui, Trost,
Ritz, Caldwell, John Does #1-3, and Wexford for deliberate
indifference to Plaintiff's serious medical needs
relating to degenerative spine disease.
Count 2: Eighth Amendment claim against Siddiqui, Trost,
Ritz, Caldwell, John Does #1-3, and Wexford for deliberate
indifference to the risk of substantial harm caused by
long-term use of Naprosyn and in failing to monitor Plaintiff
for the harm caused by long-term use.
Count 3: Eighth Amendment claim against Siddiqui, Trost,
Ritz, Caldwell, and Wexford for deliberate indifference to
Plaintiff's serious medical needs relating to kidney
Count 4: Illinois state law claim for medical negligence
against Siddiqui, Trots, Ritz, Caldwell, John Does #1-3, and
Wexford for disregarding the risk of substantial harm caused
by long-term use of Naprosyn and failing to ...