United States District Court, C.D. Illinois
MERIT REVIEW - AMENDED COMPLAINT
MICHAEL M. MIHM, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
proceeding pro se, files an amended complaint under
42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging deliberate indifference to his
serious medical needs at the Lincoln Correctional Center
(“Lincoln”). The case is before the Court for a
merit review pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. In reviewing
the Complaint, the Court accepts the factual allegations as
true, liberally construing them in Plaintiff's favor.
Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d 645, 649-51 (7th Cir.
2013). However, conclusory statements and labels are
insufficient. Enough facts must be provided to “state a
claim for relief that is plausible on its face.”
Alexander v. United States, 721 F.3d 418, 422 (7th
Cir. 2013)(citation and internal quotation marks omitted).
While the pleading standard does not require “detailed
factual allegations, ” it requires “more than an
accusation.” Wilson v. Ryker, 451 Fed.Appx.
588, 589 (7th Cir. 2011) quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal,
556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
November 6, 2018, Plaintiff went to the Defendant Lincoln
Healthcare Unit complaining of chest pain. Plaintiff was seen
by Defendant Dr. Katterman who prescribed him Tylenol,
aspirin, a blood thinner, and Aproxzene, an unidentified
medication. Plaintiff thereafter allegedly experienced a drug
reaction to the Tylenol and aspirin. Plaintiff claims to have
allergies to these medication without indicating whether the
allergies were known and preexisting, or whether he
experienced them for the first time on November 6, 2018.
Furthermore, Plaintiff does not explain why he believes his
symptoms; sweats, headaches, burning on urination, tremors,
itchiness, drowsiness and dizziness are attributable to the
Tylenol and aspirin, rather than the other medications, or
another condition altogether.
noted, Plaintiff does not allege that he knew of the drug
allergies prior to November 6, 2018, and informed Defendant.
He does not claim that this information was recorded in the
Lincoln medical record, or that Dr. Katterman would have
reason to know of it. Most tellingly, Plaintiff does not
allege that he refused the medication, a reasonable course if
he had known, on November 6, 2018, that he was allergic to
Tylenol and aspirin. Plaintiff alleges only that Defendant
Katterman prescribed him the “wrong medication”
and that the medication did not help his
February 2, 2019 Plaintiff experienced a minor stroke and was
sent to a hospital in Springfield. There, a physician told
him that the stroke was due to the Tylenol and aspirin
ordered by Defendant Katterman. The unidentified physician
claimed that Defendant Katterman “should be ashamed of
himself” because “the file, ” presumably
the hospital chart, reflected Plaintiff's allergy to
these medications. It remains unclear, however, whether the
hospital chart documented a pre-existing drug allergy or
merely Plaintiff's self-reported history, based merely on
his own conjecture.
claims that Defendant prescribed the Tylenol and aspirin on
two occasions, November 6, 2018 and again, after Plaintiff
returned from the Springfield hospital. It is unclear whether
Plaintiff is alleging that he was kept on a course of Tylenol
and aspirin or merely that he was given the medication on two
occasions. If the latter, it is unclear why a one-time dose
of Tylenol and aspirin on November 6, 2018 would have caused
Plaintiff to develop a stroke on February 2, 2019.
makes an unrelated claim that on February 2, 2019, he went to
“therapy for my chest.” Plaintiff claims, without
providing detail, that while undergoing therapy he began
vomiting blood and discovered that he had a “hole in
his chest.” At some point, Plaintiff spoke with
Defendant Nurse Diane who told him he would have to wait to
be seen by the Doctor. Plaintiff asserts that Defendant Diane
was deliberately indifferent for failing to offer him
treatment. He does not indicate whether he was seen by a
physician and does not reveal what became of the hole in his
also pleads a vague claim against L. Hopp, the Head of the
Lincoln Healthcare Unit and the Lincoln Chief Administrative
Officer (“CAO”). He claims only that both
“lied” when they claimed that Plaintiff had been
sent to Peoria for therapy. Plaintiff asserts that he had
therapy on only one occasion, February 11, 2019, and that
this was in Springfield, not Peoria. This is the only
reference to L. Hopp, and the CAO and it is unclear whether
Plaintiff is attempting to assert a claim against them and
under what constitutional claim he would assert it.
requests injunctive and declaratory relief as well as $50
million in compensatory and punitive damages.
amended complaint is only slightly less confusing than the
original. When the Court conducted a merit review of the
original complaint, it dismissed it as too vague, with leave
to replead. Plaintiff was instructed that if he filed an
amended complaint, he was to indicate whether he reported the
alleged drug allergy symptoms to Defendant. Not only has
Plaintiff failed to do this, he has also failed to disclose
whether the alleged Tylenol and aspirin allergy was known and
pre-existing. As Plaintiff was previously informed, a
physician is not liable for prescribing medication to which a
patient had a previously unknown allergy. Roberson v.
Ping, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 114719 .
also unclear whether Plaintiff was given discrete doses of
Tylenol and aspirin on two occasions or whether he was on a
regular regimen. If Plaintiff was only given two discrete
doses, it is unclear how the February 2, 2019 stroke could
have been attributed to the Tylenol and aspirin given some
three months earlier. Plaintiff will be given an opportunity
to replead this claim to address these issues. Plaintiff is,
cautioned, however, that he is to follow the Court's
instructions and provide the requested information, or face
possible dismissal of this case.
complaint against Defendant Diane cannot proceed here as it
is unrelated to the November 6, 2018 claims against Defendant
Katterman. As a result, it represents an impermissible
misjoinder. See Ghashiyah v. Frank, No. 05-0766,
2008 WL 680203, at *2 (E.D. Wis. Mar. 10, 2008)
(“defendants are properly joined in a single action
only if they are parties to a single transaction or
occurrence common to all defendants, and the claims against
them involve a common question of fact or law.”)
See George v. Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir.
2007), “[u]nrelated claims against different defendants
belong in different suits… Claim A against Defendant 1
should not be joined with unrelated Claim B against Defendant
2.” Plaintiff is advised that if he wishes to proceed
on a claim against Defendant Diane, he must file it is a
separate lawsuit with responsibility for the attendant filing
fee. Defendant Diane is DISMISSED.
has named the Lincoln CAO and L. Hopp but does not assert a
deliberate indifference claim against them. He alleges only
that they lied when they stated that he had been sent to
Peoria for therapy. To the extent that this allegation is