United States Court of Appeals For the Seventh Circuit
Civil Rights — cruel and unusual punishment
Summary judgment was properly granted to the defendants on a prisoner’s claim that the doctor’s determination, that his pain was the result of arthritis, and an MRI scan would not be helpful, constitutes deliberate indifference to his medical needs.
“That Ray’s pain is a serious condition is common ground among the litigants. For his part, Ray concedes that he has received medical treatment from several physicians. He has been examined often, x-rays have been taken, and physicians have prescribed painkillers— principally Ultram, a synthetic analgesic often used in the treatment of arthritis. The medical staff also has arranged for Ray to be assigned a lower bunk, so that he can avoid arm motions that he has found painful. Ray is sure that, with the assistance of an MRI scan, physicians could do better. But both Farmer and Gamble observe that medical malpractice is not actionable under §1983. 511 U.S. at 835; 429 U.S. at 106. The district court concluded that even a conclusion of malpractice would be unwarranted. Ray does not deny that, if his pain stems from arthritis, his treatment is appropriate. And he has not produced evidence that norms of professional conduct call for using an MRI to determine whether a diagnosis of arthritis based on x-ray films may be mistaken.”
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois, Myerscough, J., Per Curiam.