Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is an extremely rare but possible vaccine adverse reaction. The association is often made between Guillain-Barre syndrome and the flu shot, but a number of vaccines have been known to result in GBS on rare occasions.
GBS is a debilitating autoimmune disorder that often starts out as muscle weakness or tingling but can evolve into paralysis as it spreads throughout the body.
GBS symptoms include:
- Prickling, “pins and needles” sensations in your fingers, toes, ankles or wrists
- Weakness in your legs that spreads to your upper body
- Severe pain that may feel achy or cramp-like and may be worse at night
- Unsteady walking or inability to walk or climb stairs
- Difficulty with eye or facial movements, including speaking, chewing or swallowing
- Difficulty breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Low or high blood pressure
- Difficulty with bladder control or bowel function
There is no cure for GBS, but therapy can lessen the severity overtime. A lifetime of therapy and medical treatment can be expensive, but compensation may be available for victims.
The government has set aside funds through the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) for people who suffer a severe vaccine adverse reaction including GBS from the flu shot. Contact a vaccine injury lawyer to find out how to file a claim if it happened to you.