Like any other medical procedure, receiving a vaccine comes with the risk of suffering an adverse reaction. This does not mean that you should avoid vaccines – often, their benefits far outweigh their risks. However, these risks should not be ignored. Sometimes, adverse reactions to vaccines can be prevented. In these cases, victims can file medical malpractice claims to seek compensation for their resulting damages.

Which Side Effects are Expected with Vaccines?

Common side effects of vaccines include:

  • Headache;

  • Fatigue;

  • Shivering;

  • Reactions like swelling and rash at the site of injection; and

  • Muscle and joint pain.

These side effects are typically not severe enough to be part of a valid malpractice claim. They are an expected part of the vaccination process and generally do not cause victims to suffer financial damages. Other side effects are less common and can cause the victim to suffer financial damages, such as:

  • Allergic reactions;

  • In children, a high fever can occur after a vaccine;

  • Severe pain; and

  • Seizure.

Specific vaccines are linked to certain potential side effects, such as the possibility of suffering a seizure after receiving the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine. Always discuss the potential side effects of a vaccine with your doctor before receiving one or consenting to one for your child.

When Can an Adverse Reaction to a Vaccine be Caused by Malpractice?

Even when severe side effects occur after a vaccination, they are not always caused by the doctor’s negligence. For a doctor to be negligent, he or she must fail to take the same level of care that another doctor would reasonably have taken to protect the patient from harm. With vaccines, knowing the patient’s allergies and medical history and disclosing any specific side effects he or she can potentially face is part of the standard of care.

Sometimes, vaccines are contaminated with harmful bacteria or viruses that are transferred to the patient through injections. In a case like this, the patient has the right to file a medical malpractice claim alleging negligence on the part of the vaccine’s manufacturer, distributor, the doctor who performed the vaccination, or the hospital where he or she received the vaccine.

Work with an Experienced Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyer

If you have suffered from an adverse reaction because of a doctor’s failure to warn you about the specific risks that accompany a vaccine, you can potentially be entitled to recover monetary compensation for your damages through a medical malpractice claim. To learn more, contact our team of experienced medical malpractice lawyers at Baizer Kolar, P.C. today to set up your initial consultation in our Chicago office.