Justia Public Benefits Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in Products Liability
LaLonde v. Sec’y of Health & Human Servs.
M.L. was born in 2003. At his 15-month well-child visit, his pediatrician noted that M.L. was walking and generally developing normally but did not “want to talk.” In 2005, M.L. received several immunizations, including the DTaP vaccination. Hours later, M.L. allegedly began experiencing an abnormally high fever and swelling. He was admitted to the hospital with a diagnosis of “vaccine adverse reaction with secondary fever, angiodema, and anaphylactoid reaction.” The morning after his discharge, M.L.’s mother called an ambulance because M.L. was exhibiting signs of hypothermia and seizure-like episodes. In the months that followed, M.L.’s vocabulary allegedly decreased. An MRI of M.L.’s brain with and without contrast was normal. After observing M.L.’s developmental delays and repetitive behaviors, a pediatric neurologist placed M.L. in the autism spectrum disorder category. A special master rejected claims under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986, 42 U.S.C. 300aa-1 to -34, and the Claims Court affirmed. The Federal Circuit affirmed. While the DTaP vaccination likely caused the initial anaphylactic reaction, there was no reliable medical theory that the M.L.’s anaphylaxis caused a focal brain injury. View "LaLonde v. Sec'y of Health & Human Servs." on Justia Law
Stone v. Sec’y of Health & Human Servs.
Plaintiffs sought compensation under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, 42 U.S.C. 300aa, for injuries to their children allegedly caused by the Diptheria-Tetanus-acellular Pertussis vaccine. The children suffer a seizure disorder, known as Severe Myoclonic Epilepsy of Infancy. The same special master presided over both cases and determined that plaintiffs failed to show entitlement to compensation because evidence showed that a gene mutation present in both children was the sole cause of their injuries. The Court of Federal Claims affirmed. The Federal Circuit affirmed, noting considerable evidentiary support for the conclusion. View "Stone v. Sec'y of Health & Human Servs." on Justia Law