Vaccines can keep you and your family healthy, protecting overall well-being and preventing potentially life-threatening diseases. However, some vaccines have caused severe side effects, including seizures. Seizures from vaccines are one of the most common adverse reactions to a vaccination shot.
Seizures can affect your everyday life in various ways, keeping you from the things you love most. In this article, we’ll talk about what kind of seizures you may get from a vaccine, who is at risk of getting vaccine-proximate seizures, and what you should do if you experience seizures following vaccination.
Which Vaccines Can Cause Seizures?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) work tirelessly to ensure vaccines work safely and effectively for the public. Vaccinations go through rigorous testing and protocols before they get approved and become available in the United States. However, you could still experience seizures after receiving certain CDC- and FDA-approved immunizations.
MMR and MMRV Vaccines
The measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and measles, mumps, rubella, varicella (MMRV) vaccines are live, attenuated viral vaccines. Medical researchers have found correlations between them and fever-related seizures (febrile seizures) in children. According to the CDC, children may experience seizures within a seven-to-ten-day window after getting the MMR and MMRV shots.
The diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTaP) vaccine can help prevent severe illness and even death. However, the CDC has studied this vaccination in depth and shown it may cause febrile seizures in children when administered with the flu shot.
On rare occasions, seizures may occur within a 24-hour period after getting the flu vaccine. When administered with DTaP or pneumococcal vaccines, the risk of these harmful side effects increases slightly. Some people may also experience seizures after receiving the pneumococcal vaccine by itself.
Several national and international studies have investigated the link between vaccines and seizures. If you or a loved one suddenly struggles with seizures without a prior history of them, it could be traced back to an MMR, MMRV, tetanus, influenza, or pneumococcal vaccine. Research consistently shows a correlation between getting immunized and suffering from seizures.
What Kind of Seizure Can You Get From a Vaccine?
Vaccines can help protect you from seizure-inducing illnesses and diseases. Chickenpox, measles, mumps, rubella, influenza, and pneumococcal infections often lead to a fever and can cause febrile seizures. Getting a shot for each of these will reduce the likelihood of contracting them, but it could also put you at risk of seizures.
The type of seizures from vaccines you may get depends on your underlying health condition and whether or not you’ve had previous episodes. If you have a seizure, talking to your doctor can help identify which kind it is and how to treat it appropriately. Two of the most common types of seizures are:
- Febrile seizures: These seizures frequently occur among children from birth up to two years old. Infections and illnesses like the flu typically result in a fever, which can cause seizures. Certain vaccines and vaccine combinations may also cause febrile seizures in kids.
- Absence seizures: This type of seizure involves brief episodes during which the person appears to be staring into space while their body freezes temporarily or twitches involuntarily. It may look like they’re sleeping, but they’re conscious and aware.
How Common Are Seizures From Vaccines?
When it comes to the possibility of a vaccine causing a seizure, you should know that febrile seizures are the most common type. The MMR vaccine is the usual suspect when it comes to causing febrile seizures, accounting for about half of all seizure cases following a vaccine. CDC reports show that roughly 30 out of 100,000 vaccinated children experience febrile seizures due to vaccination.
Although vaccine-related seizures aren’t widespread, they still happen. Recent medical research suggests that immunizations “trigger” rather than “cause” seizures, per se. If your genetic makeup is more susceptible to seizures, getting a vaccine could spark a reaction that causes them.
The question is, would 30 out of 100,000 kids have developed febrile seizures without the vaccine? Did the first vaccination make the seizures worse? Scientists and medical professionals have yet to find the answers as they continue to study vaccines.
Who Is at Risk of Seizure From Vaccines?
Seizures from vaccines are rare, but they may occur more frequently in specific groups of people. Age, hereditary diseases, and underlying conditions and disorders can put you at greater risk. The following demographics have a higher risk of suffering vaccine-related seizures:
- Children under five years old: Infants and kids up to two years old are especially susceptible to febrile seizures.
- People with a family history of seizures or epilepsy: For example, you’re much more likely to experience seizures if one of your parents has had a seizure.
- People with allergies to the antigens in vaccines, such as eggs or gelatin: If you don’t know for sure what you’re allergic to, talk to your doctor before getting vaccinated.
- People with autoimmune disorders: If you have lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, you could be at a higher risk of vaccine-proximate seizures.
What Should You Do if You Have Seizures After a Vaccine?
If you experience seizures after having a vaccine, seek medical attention from your doctor or family physician. A trusted medical professional can help you review your vaccination records and packages, identify whether or not a vaccine caused the seizures, and determine the best next steps. You will likely just have to wait for things to return to normal if your doctor finds no cause for concern.
If your physician determines that the vaccination may have caused or triggered the seizures, you shouldn’t wait to act. Save all the relevant information and contact an experienced vaccine injury law firm like Sadaka Law. We can help you file a claim and get appropriate compensation.
How To Prove That You Got Seizures From a Vaccine
When a vaccine induces a seizure, it can be challenging to prove that the vaccine was indeed the cause. You must verify that a vaccine caused the injuries by considering how soon you or your loved one suffered from seizures after vaccination. You’ll also need to identify any other known triggers (such as a previous injury or illness) and double-check for medical errors to see whether you have undiagnosed or untreated conditions that could cause seizures.
If you believe a recent immunization caused you or your child’s seizures and want to pursue legal action, talk to our vaccine injury lawyers at Sadaka Law. We specialize in medical malpractice cases and will evaluate your case thoroughly to determine how to best proceed. We’ll work with you throughout the process and keep your interests in mind.
How Much Compensation Can You Expect for Seizures Due To Vaccines?
You have every right to pursue compensation if a vaccine caused or triggered a seizure. Many factors determine how much compensation you can expect, including the severity of your injuries and how long they last. Working with an experienced attorney can help you get the proper compensation.
Vaccine-related injuries can be life-altering, affecting you and your family in many ways. While compensation won’t cure you, it can help you gain back some of what you lost and protect other patients from medical malpractice in the future. Vaccine injury attorneys help many clients get compensation for the following:
- Economic damages: Seizures may leave you with frequent doctor visits, medication, high medical bills, and the inability to earn money. If eligible, you can receive compensation to help cover these economic damages.
- Non-economic damages: A vaccine-related injury can lead to things like ongoing suffering, pain, emotional distress, mental health issues, and (at the very least) inconvenience. Many victims pursue compensation to help pay for these non-economic damages.
- Punitive damages: Some people take legal action against medical practitioners and healthcare organizations to keep them from injuring others and punish them for their malpractice. Beyond economic and non-economic compensation, you could also receive compensation for punitive damages.
Get Help From Experienced Vaccine Injury Lawyers Today
Although vaccines can keep you and your family healthy, research proves that some of them may lead to seizures. According to the CDC, vaccines like MMR and DTaP can cause or trigger seizures in children, so always be on the lookout for signs following a shot.
Seizures can be devastating and life-changing, especially if you didn’t know your vaccination could cause them. Knowing how to proceed can also be confusing and stressful. The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) has a rigid three-year deadline to file a claim, so you’ll want to start the process as soon as possible.
Have you or a family member experienced injuries such as seizures from vaccines? At Sadaka Law, our vaccine injury lawyers have successfully helped clients proceed confidently, file a claim, and receive appropriate compensation. Contact us at (800) 810-3457 to set up an initial consultation and talk to one of our experienced attorneys.