Zostavax Class Action Lawsuit

giving someone a vaccine

Shingles vaccine Zostavax has been linked to serious injuries, including heart failure, stroke, blindness, inflammation of the spinal cord and shingles, which the vaccine is supposed to prevent. This has led to more than 1,300 lawsuits against manufacturer Merck & Co. by victims.

The experienced defective drug lawyers at Gordon & Partners may be able to file a lawsuit on your behalf to seek compensation for damages caused by your injuries. The consultation is free and there is no obligation to file a case. Our attorneys are not paid unless you get paid first.

We have recovered tens of millions of dollars in compensation for our clients over more than 25 years representing injury victims. Several attorneys at Gordon & Partners have been included in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and achieved the highest possible peer rating from Martindale-Hubbell recognizing professional excellence for legal expertise, communication skills and ethical standards.

Schedule a free consultation to discuss if you may have a Zostavax class action lawsuit. 1 (855) 722-2552. We are ready to take your call 24/7.

Can I File a Lawsuit Over My Injuries?

We may be able to add your claim to the class action lawsuit if your claim fits these three criteria:

  • You were given Zostavax sometime after 2006
  • You developed shingles at least three weeks after being vaccinated, but not more than one year after receiving the vaccine
  • A doctor diagnosed you with shingles

You may also be able to join the lawsuit if your claim satisfies the first criteria and you were diagnosed with one of the following medical conditions within two years of being vaccinated:

  • Stroke
  • Cardiovascular event
  • Hearing loss
  • Blindness
  • Eye infections
  • Damage to your retina
  • Facial paralysis, also called Bell’s palsy
  • Brain inflammation
  • Serious neurological diseases or disorders
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Vasculitis
  • Pneumonia
  • Autoimmune disorders like Guillain-Barre syndrome, Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, Meniere’s disease
  • Spinal cord inflammation, also known as myelitis
  • Postherpetic neuralgia (pain after shingles blisters subside)
  • Death

Call today to schedule your free initial consultation with a licensed attorney. 1 (855) 722-2552. We are here to answer your legal questions.

Compensation for Zostavax Victims

If you have a valid case, our attorneys may be able to pursue compensation for the physical, financial and emotional effects of the injuries you have suffered.

A large portion of compensation for a defective drug claim is for medical bills for the treatment of your injuries. This includes costs you have already incurred and costs you may incur in the future, such as the cost of:

  • Prescription medications
  • Appointments with doctors
  • Medical testing (MRIs, X-rays, CT scans, blood tests, etc.)
  • Surgery
  • Stays at the hospital or emergency room
  • Appointments with doctors

Shingles and other severe medical conditions that may result from the Zostavax vaccine may cause you to miss work. You may be physically unable to work because of the intense pain that comes with shingles, or you may miss time to go receive treatment. You may be eligible for compensation for wages lost as a result of your injuries, along with loss of future earning capacity.

Physical pain and emotional suffering may also be compensable, along with past and future lost enjoyment of life.

In some situations, punitive damages may be available. These are meant as punishment for egregious or malicious negligence on the part of the defendant.

The value of each case depends on the severity of the injuries, how long they may affect you, and other factors.

History of Zostavax and Reports of Side Effects

Zostavax is the first shingles vaccine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for patients 50 years old and older, who are more likely to contract shingles. The vaccine contains a live, weakened strain of the varicella-zoster virus meant to strengthen patients’ immune systems to prevent them from developing shingles.

According to a study published in 2006 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the vaccine was expected to reduce the risk of developing shingles by about 50 percent. Researchers studied 38,000 adults who were given the vaccine.

The facts that Zostavax was the only shingles vaccine on the market and studies showed it was effective, helped to drive sales. However, sales of the vaccine have slowed considerably in recent years. As of 2020, the FDA’s Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) had received more than 72,000 reports of problems with the vaccine, including:

  • Death
  • Permanent disability
  • Visits to doctors
  • Emergency room visits
  • Hospitalizations
  • Life-threatening side effects

There have also been hundreds of lawsuits filed against Merck & Co. making numerous allegations about marketing and warnings on the vaccine:

  • Failing to warn the public the vaccine could cause shingles (the company did not list shingles as a side effect until December 2014)
  • Continuing to sell the vaccine knowing the risks
  • Intentionally, willfully and knowingly misrepresenting the safety of the vaccine
  • Lying about how effective the vaccine is at preventing shingles
  • Zostavax may cause death
  • The vaccine is unreasonably dangerous

There are currently 1,210 lawsuits pending in a multidistrict litigation (MDL) against Merck & Co. The purpose of an MDL is to consolidate similar cases in one court to help streamline the legal process. Usually, some of the cases are selected for bellwether trials to help both sides determine how trials are likely to proceed. After bellwether trials, both sides often reach a settlement to resolve some or most of the rest of the cases in the MDL.

If you developed shingles after receiving Zostavax, you may be able to join a Zostavax class action lawsuit to seek compensation for your damages.

Call Gordon & Partners today at 1 (855) 722-2552.

Is Shingrix More Effective Than Zostavax?

Sales of Zostavax also slowed because a new vaccine came on the market in 2017: Shingrix. This vaccine is manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and is for the prevention of shingles in adults who are 50 years old or older. Just days after approving this new drug, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices at the CDC officially recommended Shingrix over Zostavax for those 50 years old or older.

Shingrix is not the same as Zostavax. It uses specific pieces of the virus instead of the entire virus. That is why people often need multiple doses – the CDC recommends two doses separated by between two and six months.

The CDC says two doses is more than 90 percent effective in preventing shingles in those over the age of 50. The CDC also says Shingrix can protect 91 percent of those patients in their 70s and 80s.

One trial of Shingrix with more than 15,000 patients over the age of 50 showed the vaccine was 95 percent effective. Another trial of almost 14,000 patients aged 70 or older found the vaccine was about 90 percent effective.

What is Shingles?

The shingles virus causes a painful rash often on the victim’s torso that often wraps around from front to back. Other symptoms could include:

  • Itching
  • Fluid-filled blisters
  • Red rash a few days after pain
  • Pain, burning or tingling

Anyone who has ever had chickenpox could develop shingles because it is caused by the same virus. Unfortunately, even after the rash disappears, victims could experience pain.

Call Today to Discuss a Potential Zostavax Shingles Vaccine Lawsuit

Unsure if you may have a valid case?

Our licensed attorneys are available to discuss your claim in a free consultation, with no obligation to take legal action. We do not charge for our services unless we are able to secure compensation through the legal process.

We have a track record of success recovering compensation for the damages our clients have suffered. While we know compensation cannot change what happened, we understand how important compensation can be as victims and their families look to recover.

Call anytime to set up your free consultation with a licensed attorney. 1 (855) 722-2552

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