Inmate sues Madison County sheriff and psychiatrist claiming psychotropic drug caused diabetes

Andrea Dearden Dec. 8, 2011, 1:10am

A Madison County jail inmate says he developed diabetes as a result of a psychotropic drug given to him while in custody.

Hubert D. Hill filed a lawsuit Nov. 21 in Madison County Circuit Court against the Madison County Sheriff's Office and psychiatrist Dr. Robert Blankenship.

According to the handwritten complaint, Hill was incarcerated in the Madison County jail in August 2008. Prior to that, Hill says he had never been diagnosed with diabetes. During his stay at the jail, Hill says the facility's psychiatrist, Dr. Blankenship, prescribed the medication Geodon. The psychotropic medication is used to treat chemical imbalances in a person's brain that cause mental health concerns.

Hill says he had a bad reaction to Geodon, so Dr. Blankenship allegedly prescribed Seroquel instead. Hill says he expressed his concern about the medicine's possible side effects because he understood Seroquel was linked to the development of diabetes. The former inmate claims Dr. Blankenship ignored the issue.

Hill says he was administered Seroquel regularly and began to gain weight. He says he was eventually diagnosed with Type-1 diabetes.

Hill accuses the Madison County Sheriff's Office and Dr. Blankenship of negligence for not knowing or properly mitigating the side effects of a drug prescribed to an inmate. He is asking for more than $60,000 in damages for medical expenses and court costs.

Hill is representing himself.

Madison County Circuit Court Case No.11-L-1259.

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