Issues with arms and shoulders are rare yet serious complications from vaccinations. The arm and shoulder are the entry points for the vaccine into the body, and they are often the first place where a patient will begin to experience side effects. Problems can be as mild as discomfort and brief swelling at the injection site that can go away in a handful of days. However, there may be more serious issues that can cause severe pain and loss of use of the arms. These problems do not go away in a matter of days and can linger for months. One of the conditions that can affect the shoulder and arms is brachial neuritis. This is a rare condition, but those who experience it have their lives disrupted.
Brachial Neuritis is also known as Parsonage-Turner Syndrome. It is caused by a traumatic injury to the nerves of the brachial plexus. The brachial nerves originate in the spinal cord and travel through the chest and shoulder. Brachial neuritis is rare, with 1.5 cases for every 100,000 people.
Generally, Brachial Neuritis can be caused by an injury such as a fall or even a wound. The disease can also occur in the wake of an infection. For example, if you are playing basketball and get a stinger in your shoulder, it could be the precursor to brachial neuritis.
Of relevance here is that brachial neuritis can also afflict someone after a vaccination. Specifically, brachial neuritis can afflict someone who has had a flu vaccination or a tetanus shot. Usually, brachial neuritis can come from a predisposition, a mechanical vulnerability, and an autoimmune trigger. In this case, it is the vaccination that is the autoimmune trigger.
It is not known exactly how vaccination can cause brachial neuritis. One way that brachial neuritis can come from a vaccine is that the injection will introduce a form of the vaccine into the body. This becomes the basis for the infection that can cause brachial neuritis.
However, this condition is recognized as an injury that can result from flu and tetanus vaccines, making those who are injured in this manner eligible for compensation. Specifically, these are both listed by the Vaccine Injury Tables. In practice, most cases of brachial neuritis result from tetanus vaccinations, although there are multiple vaccinations that may result in a brachial neuritis settlement from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.
Brachial Neuritis Symptoms
Brachial neuritis is characterized by a sudden onset of severe shoulder pain. The discomfort starts in the shoulder blade and can carry across the arm and into the neck. You may be asleep in the middle of the night and suddenly feel a stinging pain because the condition develops without any warning. There is no set time after a vaccine when brachial neuritis can strike.
After the pain, there may be a period of weakness and atrophy. The period of atrophy can start 24 hours after you first feel the pain or can even begin several weeks later. This can result in a loss of motion in the shoulder and an inability to fully use the shoulder. The weakness can even travel as far down as the hand, making it hard for the patient to use their entire arm. Symptoms can range from mild to severe. In a more serious case, the patient can lose the ability to work and conduct other activities of daily life due to the loss of use of their arm.
When one has brachial neuritis, the pain is most often localized to one side of the body. Only in rare cases does brachial neuritis affect both shoulders. The side that is impacted is usually the one that is injected although some patients may experience symptoms in the other shoulder. The condition will begin with sharp pain. Shortly after the onset of the extreme discomfort, the patient will then begin to experience the loss of sensation and feeling which will then be followed by a loss of muscle control.
Brachial neuritis is not always easy to diagnose because there are a number of conditions that can impact the nerves in the shoulder. When the patient is feeling pain at the outset, it is not always possible to diagnose brachial neuritis and begin the treatment because it may take some time for the physician to figure out which condition is afflicting the patient. It is only after there has been some muscle atrophy that it is apparent that there is brachial neuritis.
The good news is that most people who are afflicted by brachial neuritis will eventually recover. The muscle that has been lost to atrophy can eventually be developed again once the pain and the condition have subsided.
The bad news is that the recovery can and will take time. Brachial neuritis can be treated with painkillers, and some cases may require physical therapy. Some patients will require steroid injections to help them rebuild muscle and strength that they have lost. Many cases of brachial neuritis will go away on their own, but not all patients with the condition are that fortunate.
Some cases may take up to three years to be resolved. Roughly ten percent of the cases of brachial neuritis are not resolved after three years. Even for the cases that eventually go away, the patient has likely experienced some physical and financial costs before that point. For, example, without the use of an arm, some patients may not be able to work. Other patients will incur costs for physical therapy and medical treatment not to mentioned excruciating pain and discomfort that some patients may feel.
Contact A Vaccine Injury Lawyer
If you have had a vaccination and developed brachial neuritis, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Contact the Law Offices of Sadaka Associates to learn how you may be able to receive financial compensation for your injuries.
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