Toscano v. Wexford Health Sources et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER, the Court ADOPTS the Report in its entirety (Doc. 54 ); OVERRULES Toscano's objection (Doc. 57 ); and DENIES Toscano's motion for a preliminary injunction (Doc. 26 ). Signed by Judge J. Phil Gilbert on 10/13/2016. (jdh)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
Case No. 16-cv-216-JPG-SCW
WEXFORD HEALTH SOURCES, DR.
SHAH and DR. ORMUNDSON,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter comes before the Court on the Report and Recommendation (“Report”) (Doc.
54) of Magistrate Judge Stephen C. Williams recommending that the Court deny plaintiff
Rigoberto Toscano’s motion for a preliminary injunction (Doc. 26). Toscano has filed an
objection to the Report (Doc. 57).
The Court may accept, reject or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or
recommendations of the magistrate judge in a report and recommendation. Fed. R. Civ. P.
72(b)(3). The Court must review de novo the portions of the report to which objections are made.
Id. “If no objection or only partial objection is made, the district court judge reviews those
unobjected portions for clear error.” Johnson v. Zema Sys. Corp., 170 F.3d 734, 739 (7th Cir.
This case arose after Toscano, an inmate at Robinson Correctional Center at all relevant
times, became dissatisfied with the medical treatment he received for a March 2015 groin injury
diagnosed as bilateral inguinal hernias. He claims that condition can only be treated with surgery,
which has not been provided to him. He believes the defendants were deliberately indifferent to
his serious medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment when they failed to fix his
hernias. In his motion for a preliminary injunction, Toscano seeks an appointment with a
specialist and surgery to fix his hernias.
In the Report, Magistrate Judge Williams found that Toscano had not established a
likelihood of success on the merits of his claim. Magistrate Judge Williams carefully reviewed
the history of Toscano’s medical treatment and held a hearing on the motion. He found that
defendant Dr. Shah credibly testified that Toscano’s hernias were small, that he was unable to feel
them in an examination and that he told Toscano he could restrict lifting weight and eat more fiber
to avoid hernia pain. Magistrate Judge Williams further noted that the Mayo Clinic states hernias
require surgery only in certain situations, none of which Dr. Shah found present with Toscano.
Magistrate Judge Williams found Toscano’s testimony about his pain not credible in light of the
fact that it differed from the type of pain Dr. Shah testified would be caused by small hernias and
that for long periods of time Toscano did not complain about frequent, extreme pain to medical
staff. Magistrate Judge Williams concluded that Toscano had no likelihood of being able to show
that the defendants were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs.
In his objection, Toscano argues that he was, in fact, in continuous pain, which would be
consistent with small hernias as stated by Dr. Shah. He points to the fact that Dr. Shah told
Toscano he could purchase pain medication from the commissary and the fact that Dr. Shah
ordered an ultrasound as evidence that Dr. Shah knew of his pain. He also challenges Dr. Shah’s
credibility and his motivation (cost containment) in not providing Toscano with pain medication.
Toscano did, in fact, complain about pain in grievances.
The Court has reviewed the matter de novo, including the medical records and the
transcript of the preliminary injunction hearing, and finds Magistrate Judge Williams is correct in
his findings and recommendations in the Report. The Court will not second-guess Magistrate
Judge Williams’ credibility findings since he was in the best position to judge the truthfulness of
witnesses appearing before him and since there is a substantial basis for those findings in the
record. The evidence reveals Toscano made sporadic complaints of pain to medical personnel in
2015 and that medical personnel responded to those complaints by prescribing pain medication
when requested and/or an ultrasound test to determine the cause of the pain, but that test revealed
Toscano had only small hernias. Dr. Shah entered the picture in early 2016. The evidence
shows he was not aware of the nature and extent of the pain Toscano now alleges, did not see any
objective findings of any condition that would cause extreme pain like Toscano alleges, was not
aware of Toscano’s desire for pain medication, and used his medical judgment to determine that
surgery was not necessary to treat Toscano’s hernias. His advice to Toscano about how to avoid
pain from hernias was a reasonable response based on what Dr. Shah knew about Toscano’s health
problems and was not deliberate indifference to Toscano’s medical needs. In sum, there is no
evidence from which Toscano could show a likelihood of success on his claim that any defendant
was deliberately indifferent to his medical needs.
For these reasons, the Court:
ADOPTS the Report in its entirety (Doc. 54);
OVERRULES Toscano’s objection (Doc. 57); and
DENIES Toscano’s motion for a preliminary injunction (Doc. 26).
IT IS SO ORDERED.
DATED: October 13, 2016
s/ J. Phil Gilbert
J. PHIL GILBERT
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?