Photo of Richard Gage and his 3 associates
Top Vaccine Injury Attorney
in the entire United States
Serving Clients Nation-Wide
1815 Pebrican Ave
Cheyenne, Wyoming  82001
Phone:  (307) 433−8864,

How Do I Know My Child
Has A Vaccine Injury?

Vaccine injuries are relatively rare. But when they occur, they can be very real, sometimes devastating, and occasionally fatal.

Some vaccine injuries are obvious and easy to prove. Others are far less apparent, making it much more difficult to prove actual cause and obtain needed compensation.

An example of obvious injury is paralysis caused by polio from an oral polio vaccination (OPV), which uses a live vaccine. Due to high risk of injury, oral polio vaccinations are no longer used in the USA.

Another problem: Your pediatrician may not admit to you that your child has a vaccination injury. This sometimes happens when it was the pediatrician who administered the vaccine, and he wants to protect his reputation rather than provide you with an accurate evaluation or the truth.

Kinds of Vaccine Injuries

Certain types of injuries can be caused by almost any vaccine. The injury might be directly related to the immunizing agent itself, or it might be in reaction to other ingredients or factors in the overall vaccine product.

On the other hand, vaccines for certain diseases tend to cause specific injuries, as in the case of oral polio vaccine previously mentioned. Another example:  DPT vaccines can sometimes cause toxic encephalopathy where endotoxin and the pertussis antigen (whooping cough), both of which are toxic, can cause brain injury and seizures.

Examples of Vaccine Injuries

Let's explore a few specific kinds of injuries:

Allergic Reaction (Anaphylaxis)
Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction to antigens contained in a vaccine dose.

Antigens (originally called antibody generators) are substances that cause the body's immune system to produce antibodies when the antigen is recognized as a foreign and potentially harmful invader, whether molecules such as pollen, viruses, or bacteria.

While vaccines contain antigens specific to the disease the person is being vaccinated for, they also contain other substances that certain individuals might be allergic to.

For example, some vaccines are grown in fertilized chicken eggs. A person who is allergic to chicken eggs may have an allergic reaction to the vaccine — perhaps even a severe reaction. That's why people who are allergic to chicken eggs should not take those vaccines.
Autoimmune Reaction:
Autoimmune reactions are rare and vary widely. They also are not unique to any specific vaccine. The specific resulting injuries are also many. Without confusing you with a bunch of big medical words, here's a general explanation of how they occur:

The purpose of a vaccine is to prepare and train the immune system to identify a disease-causing virus or bacterial infection, so it can be prepared to destroy the foreign invader before it does any damage to the body, should an infection occur.

Unfortunately, in some rare cases, the immune system reacts incorrectly — attacking the victim's own body instead, of the intended vaccine antigens (or the foreign infectors if a disease attacks the body).

If an autoimmune reaction occurs and attacks the insulating myelin sheath around the nerves, the damage leads to:

  • Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS) or chronic GBS if the attack is against the peripheral nerves.
  • An attack against the central nervous system can cause:
    • Multiple sclerosis (MS),
    • Myelitis (spinal cord inflammation),
    • Encephalitis (brain inflammation),
    • Optic neuritis (inflammation of the optic nerve),
    • Other similar nervous-system disorders.
  • Likewise, an attack on skeletal joints can lead to arthritis.
  • An attack on the kidneys can cause nephritis.
  • And so forth.

Vaccine Injuries Vary In Seriousness

Because different people react to vaccinations in different ways and to different degrees, the extent and seriousness of vaccine injuries can vary widely. Injuries can range from minor symptoms that heal in short order with few or no long-term effects — to injuries resulting in life-long disabilities, or even death.

Also, sometimes injuries can be exacerbated by doctors and nurses who "follow rules" rather than using careful judgment. Or they might jump to an incorrect conclusion if they encounter a rare or certain kind of injury or vaccine-related disorder they aren't familiar with or haven't learned about.

Correctly spotting and diagnosing vaccine-related problems can be especially difficult when the causal relationship between symptoms and a recent vaccination may not be obvious, and therefore quite difficult to discover.

But whether due to human errors rooted in carelessness, inattentiveness, fatigue, or being rushed for time — or simply natural adverse reactions to a vaccination by the patient — vaccine injuries can be of monumental consequence for the victim and those who become responsible for that person's care — perhaps for many years.

Recognizable Vaccine-Injury Patterns

Much has been learned by comparing:

  • Conditions caused by naturally occuring viruses and bacteria responsible for various infectious diseases, and
  • Adverse reactions to vaccines for those same diseases.

In many cases those conditions and reactions are rather similar.

Analysis of case reports, epidemiology, and additional research on animals and humans provides insights into vaccines and different kinds of related injuries.

Discoveries show that vaccine injuries, though rarer, are often similar to injuries and conditions caused by the disease being vaccinated against. Most of the adverse reactions that end up being considered by the Vaccine-Injury Compensation Program (VICP or NVICP) tend to be rare reactions directly related to a specific vaccine or its related disease.

As this knowledge-base increases, it is becoming increasingly useful for evaluating and processing VICP injury claims.

How Do I Prove A Vaccine Injury?

The National Vaccine Injury Program requires that you show a medical connection between the vaccination and the claimed injury. That means you must:

  1. Provide an adequate medical theory of causation,
  2. Show a logical sequence of cause and effect,
  3. Show that the reaction occurred within the medically appropriate time frame.

When the person making the claim meets these three requirements, the burden of proof then shifts to the government attorney who must then show that some other cause is more likely than the one presented in the claim.

No Job For Do-It-Yourselfers

Obviously, given the complexity of medical issues and human imperfections, filing and supporting a claim for vaccine-injury compensation is no job for amateurs.

That's why the NVICP provides for direct payment of attorneys' fees and expenses related to handling vaccine-injury cases so you don't have to be concerned about the cost of representation.

When the NVICP approves and pays compensation, the entire amount is given to the victim or the person responsible for the victim's care. No funds are retained to pay for attorneys' costs and fees.

The best and safest way to make sure your rights under the NVICP are properly presented and protected is to be certain you're represented by qualified, experienced, legal counsel.

You have the finest representation available when you trust your claim to Richard Gage and Associates. Richard has worked with vaccine injuries for more than a quarter-century — since before the NVICP even began back in 1988.

His long list of successful cases and awards is proof of his skill … his dedication to obtaining the compensation you need and have a right to receive under the program … and his genuine concern for you and your loved ones when you face a difficult situation and a challenging journey.

As a husband and father himself, he knows what you're going through, and he is determined to provide the first-rate help you deserve as he oversees all the work being done as your case progresses through the system.

Give Us A Call, Or Email Us

If you think you or a loved one is the victim of a vaccine injury, give us a call right away at (307) 433−8864, or email us at

Don't Miss An Important Deadline

Do not delay.

The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program has very strict filing deadlines that must be met. If you miss a deadline, you also lose your right to seek compensation for your injury.