RARE VACCINE INJURIES
While vaccines are necessary to maintain public health and safety, like any other form of medical treatment, they can cause serious health problems for some people. In fact, just last year, over 48,000 people reported adverse reactions and/or side effects from vaccinations to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System.
While injuries do occur, the benefits of vaccines certainly outweigh the risks, and experts from the CDC have said that vaccinations “will prevent more than 21 million hospitalizations and more than 732,000 deaths among children born in the last 20 years.” Therefore, it is wise to continue receiving vaccines so that we can maintain a healthy population. If an injury occurs, the vaccine program is there to provide compensation, but don’t avoid vaccines because of a slight chance of injury.
ACUTE DISSEMINATED ENCEPHALOMYELITIS (ADEM)
Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM) causes swelling of the brain and spinal cord. The flu vaccine has been identified as one of the causes of ADEM.
ANAPHYLAXIS OR ANAPHYLACTIC SHOCK
Anaphylaxis and anaphylactic shock is an acute, severe, and potentially lethal systemic allergic reaction that occurs as a single discrete event with simultaneous involvement of two or more organ systems.
CHRONIC INFLAMMATORY DEMYELINATING POLYNEUROPATHY (CIDP)
CIDP is a rare neurological disorder involving inflammation of the nerve roots and peripheral nerves and destruction of the fatty protective covering over the nerves.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN VACCINE REACTIONS AND INJURIES?
A vaccine reaction happens when your body responds to the vaccine, and a person may experience mild to moderate symptoms, such as fever and/ or pain at injection site, that typically resolve on their own in a relatively short period of time.
In contrast, if you experience long lasting side effects and symptoms that do not resolve on their own, you may very well have a vaccine injury. The most common reported injuries include:
Shoulder injury (SIRVA) – ranges from frequent soreness or pain to the complete loss of use of the shoulder.
Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) – it has been linked to a number of vaccines, especially the flu vaccine, and occurs when the immune system turns on itself, causing damage to nerve cells.
Chronic Arthritis – combination vaccines, such as MRR, have been linked to chronic rheumatoid arthritis, and common symptoms are joint pain and swelling.
Encephalitis – occurs when an infection or the body’s response to infection affects brain inflammation. Symptoms include headache, fever, fatigue weakness and pain.
Anaphylaxis – in some cases, people are allergic to vaccine components, resulting in strong allergic reactions.
Transverse myelitis – vaccine induced TM causes inflammation of the spinal cord and damages the motor and sensory nerves. Symptoms of myelitis include blurred vision, depression, pain, weakness, paralysis, bladder and bowel dysfunction, etc.
While the above list of injuries is not exhaustive, the above injuries are considered somewhat rare. Fortunately, though, if you do experience such an injury, the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) was created to ensure that people injured by vaccines could be compensated. If you qualify, the NVICP provides legal assistance with no upfront costs.
If you believe you have suffered an injury related to the administration of a vaccine, our attorneys have extensive experience handling these claims and are here to help.