Can You Get Brain Damage from Vaccine Side Effects?

monitor show eeg reading and brain model woman wearing brainwave scanning headset

One of our nation’s most polarizing topics is the safety and efficacy of vaccines. Many people have concerns about contracting vaccine injuries. You may wonder if it’s possible to suffer brain damage from vaccine, as well as other injuries. Yes: though rare, injuries do occur.

At Sadaka Law in Inglewood, NJ, we have over 15 years of experience serving clients across the United States and recovering millions of dollars on behalf of clients who have suffered a vaccine injury. We aim to give our clients the support and empowerment they need to get through their challenging conditions to secure a brighter future.

Our team of attorneys has unique expertise in the vaccine injury legal arena. In fact, we were the first law firm to win a case at a hearing for a death caused by the HPV vaccine. We’re proud to be an unwavering legal advocate for our clients nationwide, both in and out of the courtroom.

Can Vaccines Cause Brain Damage?

A looming question is: How can you separate fact from fiction regarding vaccines? When the pandemic caused panic throughout the globe, getting the COVID-19 vaccine was nearly impossible for regular citizens – at first, anyway. Now, monkeypox is rapidly spreading across the U.S., and the government is authorizing vaccines for high-risk individuals.

But how safe are these vaccines? Can you get brain damage from vaccine injuries or experience other harmful side effects?

The answer is a qualified “yes”: it’s entirely possible to experience vaccine injuries from an immunization, including brain damage such as encephalitis and encephalopathy as well as anaphylaxis, arthritis, vasovagal syncope, Guillain-Barré Syndrome, and SIRVA (Shoulder Injury Related to Vaccine Administration).

To address this serious issue, the government created the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). This program compensates victims of vaccine injuries such as SIRVA and brain damage.

Which Types of Vaccines Can Cause Brain Damage?

dtap and hib vaccine with stethoscope vials and syringe

While all vaccines can cause mild side effects like swelling, redness, or pain at the injection site, some are riskier than others concerning serious symptoms like brain damage. According to VICP’s vaccine injury table, certain vaccines can cause brain damage like encephalitis or encephalopathy, including:

  • Vaccines containing whole-cell or partial-cell pertussis bacteria, including
    • DTaP
    • TDaP
    • P
    • DTP-Hib

Onset occurs within 72 hours post-immunization

  • Vaccines containing rubella virus, measles, and mumps
    • MMR
    • MM
    • MMRV

Onset occurs between 5 and 15 days post-immunization

If you or your child has suffered brain damage caused by a different vaccine type than the ones listed above, you can still file a claim with the VICP, although there’s no guarantee of receiving compensation.

However, you can increase your chances of a favorable outcome by hiring an experienced vaccine injury attorney with the skill and expertise to navigate your case confidently and advocate for your rights.

What Are Encephalopathy and Encephalitis?

Two forms of brain damage from vaccine immunization are encephalopathy and encephalitis. Before we discuss symptoms, let us define the two neurological conditions and how they affect the human brain:

Encephalopathy: Technically, encephalopathy is a category of disorders that change and injure the brain. These disorders can result from several different health problems. Encephalopathy can be either reversible or irreversible, depending on the type, cause, and severity.

Encephalitis: Encephalitis is a dangerous health condition that causes inflammation in the brain’s active and otherwise healthy tissues, usually brought on by an autoimmune response or infection. The swelling is extremely dangerous and may even prove fatal, particularly if you leave it untreated.

Certain vaccines – especially pertussis (whooping cough) and measles, mumps, and rubella – can trigger these two neurological conditions, which may lead to permanent brain damage.

Signs and Symptoms of Brain Damage After a Vaccine

man with brain damage suffering from severe headache

The symptoms of brain damage from vaccine side effects can vary based on the injury’s type, location, and severity. However, the biggest red flag to watch out for is any changes in mental state.

Additional brain damage symptoms that may occur after receiving a vaccine like pertussis or MMR include:

Encephalopathy symptoms

  • Progressive memory loss
  • Erratic personality changes
  • Loss of cognitive functions
  • Lethargy or sleepiness
  • Escalating loss of consciousness
  • Inability to focus or concentrate
  • Involuntary muscle twitches
  • Nystagmus (rapid and spontaneous eye movements)
  • Tremors or muscle weakness

Encephalitis symptoms

  • Light sensitivity
  • Lethargy or sleepiness
  • Headache pain
  • Increased moodiness
  • Low-grade fever or flu-like symptoms
  • Unsteady balance and gait
  • Seizures
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue or exhaustion
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Personality changes
  • Reduced consciousness

If you or a loved one experience any of these symptoms after receiving a vaccine, seek immediate medical attention from a licensed healthcare professional. Then, report your vaccine injuries to VAERS, or the National Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System.

Your next call should be to an experienced vaccine injury lawyer with the knowledge and expertise to handle your case.

Can You File a Lawsuit for Encephalitis Caused By a Vaccine?

woman filing lawsuit for a case of encephalitis caused by a vaccine

Yes, you can file a lawsuit for a case of encephalitis caused by a vaccine. However, just as with any other lawsuit, no guarantee exists that you’ll receive compensation. Of course, before you file a claim or VICP petition, you’ll need to gather evidence to prove a vaccine directly caused your encephalitis or brain damage.

Fortunately, your lawyer can handle all of the legal red tape for you, taking the stress and responsibility off your shoulders. Be sure to take the time to research and compare lawyers before you make any commitments. Look for law firms with real-life experience, a stellar reputation, and a clear track record of performance in this practice area.

Does VICP Cover Vaccine-Related Encephalitis?

Yes, VICP does cover vaccine-related encephalitis. In fact, it covers injuries from most routine vaccines in the United States. We suggest browsing the vaccine injury table to determine if the VICP covers your specific injuries or the vaccine you received. The VICP table contains valuable information, including types of vaccine injuries, exclusions, coverage limits, and data regarding appropriate time periods for symptom onsets.

Don’t give up hope if you don’t see your health condition or injury on the table or if it doesn’t meet the specific requirements listed. You can still try to prove that the vaccine you received caused your brain damage or other injuries by presenting the court with medical records, witness testimony, expert medical opinions, etc.

However, the process will be much more complex and require qualified legal assistance. At Sadaka Law, we’ve handled vaccine injury cases nationwide and recovered millions of dollars for our clients. You can reach out to us any time to schedule a case consultation with our team.

Can a Person Recover from Brain Damage Caused By Vaccines?

If you suffer from brain damage caused by a vaccine, is it possible to recover? Sadly, there’s no easy way to answer that question. Each person is different, and the likelihood of recovery usually depends on the severity of the problem and how quickly a doctor can identify and treat it.

For example, encephalitis causes brain tissue inflammation. Mild cases of this condition are usually treatable and result in a full recovery. However, survivors of severe encephalitis may have permanent brain damage that results in debilitating health conditions, including chronic fatigue, seizures, memory and hearing loss, or blindness. Also, some instances of encephalitis can result in death without treatment.

Since encephalopathy refers to a group of disorders, treatments vary widely. However, the key to finding an effective treatment depends on the primary cause of the encephalopathy. By identifying the root cause, a doctor can build a customized treatment plan to address the initial problem and the ensuing symptoms.

Contact Us at Sadaka Law’s Vaccine Injury Help Center for More Information

It’s true that most vaccines on today’s market are safe, effective, and don’t cause severe side effects. However, many exceptions exist. Some people experience harmful, dangerous, or even fatal side effects from receiving a vaccine, including permanent brain damage.

For example, pertussis and MMR vaccines may contribute to encephalitis or encephalopathy. If you believe you may have suffered brain damage from vaccine immunizations, our legal experts may be able to help. However, remember that you only have three years from the date of your injury to file a case.

Call us at Sadaka Law today at (800) 810-3457 and request your case consultation with our team.

Stay Informed

Download Your
Free Vaccine Injury Kit

You will learn about the most common vaccine injuries,
what causes them, and how Sadaka Law can help you.


Founded by Mark T. Sadaka, Esq., Sadaka Law is a premier law firm experienced in handling complex lawsuits for injured people throughout the country. Find out if you have a case.


You Only Have Three Years To File Your Claim

The first step in helping yourself or a loved one after a serious vaccine related injury is to contact us for a free review of your case.

We want to
hear your story.

START getting your life back

Recent Posts