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Are SIRVA Injuries on The Rise?

Richard H. Moeller May 24, 2017

Last month I wrote about changes to the Vaccine Injury Table, which included adding SIRVA injuries.  The decision to add this type of injury came about after a study of shoulder injuries was conducted by Dr. Sarah Atanasoff for the United States Department of Health and Human Services.  According to Dr. Atanasoff, a review of claims filed with the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) showed a pattern emerging with common features of shoulder pain following vaccination, with most being the seasonal flu shot. The study referred to this type of injury as “SIRVA” which stands for shoulder injury related to vaccine administration.  Often the patients felt that the injection had been too high in the arm or shoulder area, and experienced shoulder pain beyond the site of the shot.

The change in the Table recognizes that now, much more than in years past, many of the claims filed and entitled to compensation from the VICP are due to SIRVA.  And in our own experience, most of the cases we have filed in the last few years involve shoulder injuries following a flu shot or other vaccination, compared to the neurological conditions resulting from vaccines.  This trend makes sense if, as Dr. Atanasoff found, literature supports the possibility that these shoulder injuries can be traced to the inappropriate technique of injection, and if you consider the larger number of flu shots administered every year by non-typical vaccine administrators, such as pharmacists.  So, it may be that SIRVA injuries in the VICP are on the rise just because there are more vaccinations given every year and a growing awareness of that in rare instances they can lead to complications.  We list many of these conditions associated with SIRVA.

When our firm is contacted by a person who believes they may have suffered any injury from one of the vaccines covered by the VICP, there is no fee to visit about the claim, or to investigate the claim, or to pursue the claim.  You can contact us about a possible Vaccine Injury by visiting our Contact page. And you can learn more about the VICP and the firm's representation of persons with possible Vaccine Injury claims by visiting our Vaccine Injury Pros website and other articles in our Blog.