Vaccine Injury

Unique Experience and Perspective – Personal Tragedy

Mr. Stavola offers a unique perspective to the realm of vaccine injury. This is because his own family proceeded through the U.S. Court of Federal Claims system.

When he was 10 years of age, his sister and best friend, Holly, experienced a violent adverse reaction within days of her second dose of the Measles-Mumps-Rubella (“MMR”) vaccine. She suffered terribly for days and subsequently died of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis induced by the MMR vaccine. This adverse event is on the vaccine table of injuries (adverse reactions known to exhibit a high likelihood of causal connection to the vaccine). The U.S. Court of Federal Claims conceded that her very untimely and premature passing was a result of the MMR vaccine. Her family was compensated by the Federal Government. Mr. Stavola’s mother, shortly thereafter, went on to pass Holly’s Law in NJ, known as the Antibody Blood Titer Law.

Please read more about Holly and the law here and here.

Vaccines are biological products regulated under the Public Health Service Act and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. In order to attain FDA licensure, the vaccine manufacturers submit a biologics license application to the FDA, and the FDA determines whether there’s enough evidence of safety and efficacy to approve the product. It is important to note that – like approved pharmaceutical drugs – the standard for approval is not total safety or safety for all individuals. The FDA weighs factors of efficacy and safety and makes a determination that there is an acceptable level of safety for approval. No black and white quantitative standard exists in arriving at that conclusion.

And so, like pharmaceutical drugs, reactions occur. Certain subsets of individuals may exhibit hypersensitivities, allergies, autoimmunity, or immunodysregulation associated with the vaccine. Such adverse responses to vaccines are documented in the manufacturer’s package inserts and throughout the biomedical literature. Again, like drugs, some people may appear to fare well and trouble free for days, months, and years after receipt of a vaccine, while others may experience any litany of symptoms, ranging from mild to occasionally severe or even fatal.

Such severe or fatal responses, while infrequent, are nearly impossible or impossible to foresee at the present state of medical science. Holly was perfectly healthy before her passing – no history of allergies, autoimmunity, immunodysfunction. She experienced a high magnitude, severe, fatal response to the Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine, culminating in acute disseminated encephalomyelitis ( ADEM), which is essentially intense inflammation of the brain and spinal cord. 

Certain medical tests can serve as biomarkers to potentially identify whether you or your loved one might be susceptible to a more severe vaccine reaction (Mr. Stavola can advise on which tests it might be worthwhile to see); however, few physicians conduct such tests or aware of the literature regarding medical biomarkers. Even if you take a biomarker test, it is not bulletproof in terms of predictive value, but it can shed light on overall base risk for stronger vaccine reactions. Aside from such testing, which is often expensive and not covered by insurance, it is virtually impossible to predict potential vaccine injuries.

What to do if you think you experienced a vaccine injury

Call Mr. Stavola to assist you in navigating this issue. It is important to note that legal representation is completely free of charge as the fees are covered by the U.S. government. Mr. Stavola will discuss your case with you and assess whether filing a petition to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims (the court charged with adjudicating vaccine injury cases) is a prudent idea. 
Almost every vaccine is “covered” by the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (the program that administers the compensation to petitioners). These vaccines include: 

seasonal influenza vaccines, tetanus vaccines (e.g. DTaP and DTP), vaccines containing measles, mumps, and rubella virus or any of its components (e.g., MMR, MM, MMRV), Hepatitis B vaccines, Varicella vaccines, Pneumococcal conjugate vaccines, and Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines.

After submitting your petition/claim to the Court, the process involves a back and forth between our experts and the government’s experts, hopefully culminating in the Special Master (Judge assigned to the case) agreeing that the vaccine was responsible for your negative health outcome. Subsequently, damages are determined and awarded.

What if I think I was harmed by a COVID-19 Vaccine?

COVID-19 vaccine injury compensation is administered via a different program – the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP). Please contact Mr. Stavola for guidance and representation in this matter.

Areas Served: All States in the USA. If you are located in any state of the USA and believe you may have experienced a vaccine injury, please call Mr. Stavola.