Bell’s palsy is an idiopathic condition that causes temporary paralysis or weakness on one side of the face. As the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) explains, Bell’s palsy “results from dysfunction of cranial nerve VII (facial nerve) which directs the muscles on one side of the face, including those that control eye blinking and closing and facial expressions such as smiling.”
As NINDS also explains, the exact cause of Bell’s palsy remains unknown. However, Bell’s palsy diagnoses have been linked to vaccinations in some cases. In this article, vaccine injury lawyer Leah V. Durant discusses the link between Bell’s palsy and vaccines, as well as the possibility of recovering financial compensation for Bell’s palsy under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP).
Vaccines Linked to Bell’s Palsy
Medical researchers have identified links between Bell’s palsy and several of the vaccines that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend for routine administration to children and adults in the United States. For example, it is currently understood that Bell’s palsy has the potential to result from the following immunizations:
- Hepatitis B vaccines
- Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines
- Meningococcal conjugate vaccines
- Seasonal influenza nasal spray vaccines
- Seasonal influenza shots (flu shots)
Researchers are also studying possible links between Bell’s palsy and the H1N1 (swine flu) vaccines and the COVID-19 vaccines.
According to NINDS, “[i]mpaired immunity from stress, sleep deprivation, physical trauma, minor illness or autoimmune syndromes are suggested as the most likely triggers” for Bell’s palsy. As vaccinations have the potential to cause both physical trauma (i.e., shoulder injuries related to vaccine administration (SIRVA)) and autoimmune disorders (i.e., Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS)), it is possible that Bell’s palsy could be a secondary effect of these vaccine-related injuries and illnesses in some cases.
Vaccine Injury Claims for Bell’s Palsy Under the VICP
While some vaccine recipients who are diagnosed with Bell’s palsy will recover without serious or long-term complications, Bell’s palsy can have serious and/or chronic effects. As a result, some individuals will incur substantial medical bills, loss of income, and other losses. When Bell’s palsy caused by a vaccination lasts six months or longer (or requires inpatient treatment or surgical intervention), vaccine recipients can seek to recover their losses under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.
The VICP covers claimants’ medical bills and loss of income. It also provides compensation for pain and suffering up to $250,000. As a result, filing a successful claim can have a significant impact on a vaccine recipient’s or family’s financial stability. Since the VICP pays claimants’ legal fees separately from their compensation awards, successful claimants take home the full amount of their compensation award even when they hire a vaccine injury lawyer to represent them.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Vaccine Injury Lawyer
If you would like more information about filing a claim for vaccine-related Bell’s palsy under the VICP, we encourage you to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with national vaccine injury lawyer Leah V. Durant. Call 202-800-1711 or send us a message online to get started today.
Leah Durant Bio
Experienced litigation attorney Leah Durant focuses on representing clients in complex vaccine litigation matters. Leah Durant is the owner and principal attorney of the Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC, a litigation firm based in Washington, DC. Leah Durant and her staff represent clients and their families who suffer from vaccine-related injuries, adverse vaccine reactions and vaccine-related deaths. The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is dedicated to assisting individuals in recovering the highest level of compensation as quickly and efficiently as possible. To learn more, contact vaccine attorney Leah Durant today.