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Florida Federal Prisoner's Negligently Treated Seizures Result in Paralysis

Florida federal prisoner Harold Wood brought a federal tort action against the United States in 2001 after Bureau of Prisons medical personnel failed to follow medical advice resulting in permanent disabling injuries. The $30 million suit settled for an undisclosed amount in 2002.

Wood was incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) at Marianna in 1994. He was diagnosed with a seizure disorder and was prescribed Dilantin. In 1996, a neurologist recommended increasing the dose and monitoring Wood's phenytoin serum levels due to his "sub theraputic" test results. The recommendations were allegedly ignored. In 1998, FCI Marianna clinical director E.J. Casiano requested that his phenytoin serum level be checked as well. However, the testing was not performed. Wood suffered a seizure in 1998 resulting in "physical trauma leading to a C6 C7 subluxation with a fracture through the right transverse process of C7." Wood brought the suit under the Federal Tort Claims Act alleging that he is a quadriplegic, has suffered pain, permanent disability and mental anguish, permanent loss of earning capacity, and present and future medical expenses. His administrative claim was denied in 2000.

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida approved the settlement and closed the case file in 2002. See: Wood v. United States, USDC, N.D. Fla., Case No. 5:01 cv 122 RH (Oct. 2002).

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Related legal case

Wood v. United States

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