Pre-Existing Health Conditions and Vaccines: What Do You Need to Know?

While the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recommends most vaccines for most people, there are certain exceptions for people with pre-existing health conditions. However, having certain pre-existing health conditions can also make it especially important to get vaccinated; and, as a result, it is particularly important for individuals who have pre-existing health conditions to discuss their vaccination needs and risks with their doctors.

As HHS explains:

“Some health conditions can make it harder for you to fight off vaccine-preventable diseases like pneumococcal disease or the flu. They can also make it more likely that you’ll have serious complications from those diseases. . . . [However, s]ome adults with specific health conditions should not get certain vaccines or should wait to get them.”

This can be a confusing topic, but it is also one that is extremely important for individuals with diabetes, heart disease, lung disease and other pre-existing conditions. Here, vaccine lawyer Leah V. Durant provides an overview of some of the important information contained in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Recommended Adult Immunization Schedule by Medical Condition and Other Indications and its article, Who Should NOT Get Vaccinated?

Pre-Existing Conditions and Other Potential Contraindications for the CDC’s Recommended Vaccines

First, it is important to note that the recommendations regarding who might be at risk from getting vaccinated vary by vaccination. As a result, when deciding whether to get vaccinated, it is important to consider both your pre-existing condition and the specific vaccination you are considering. In order to make an informed decision, the best thing you can do is to discuss your options with your doctor.

For example, two of the pre-existing conditions that have the most contraindications for the CDC’s recommended vaccinations are pregnancy and being immunocompromised (i.e. having HIV). While the CDC indicates that the flu shot, Tdap and certain other vaccines are safe for individuals who are pregnant or immunocompromised, it recommends against the nasal spray flu vaccine, the MMR vaccine and others, and it recommends delaying the vaccinations for zoster and human papillomavirus (HPV).

Other examples of pre-existing conditions and other contraindications that may lead to a doctor recommending against certain types of vaccinations include (but are not limited to):

  • An allergic reaction to a prior dose of the vaccine
  • Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP)
  • Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS)
  • Heart disease, kidney disease or lung disease
  • Liver disorders
  • Loss of consciousness or seizures following a prior dose of the vaccine
  • Metabolic disorders
  • Neurological or neuromuscular disorders
  • Severe pain or swelling following a prior dose of the vaccine
  • Taking certain antiviral or other medications

Again, this is a complicated topic, and we encourage anyone who has concerns about getting vaccinated or the risk of vaccine-related complications to consult with their doctor prior to making any decisions that could affect their health.

No-Cost Legal Representation for Vaccine Injury Claims Nationwide

The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is a vaccine injury law firm that represents individuals and families nationwide in claims under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). If you have questions about filing a VICP claim and would like to speak with a vaccine lawyer, you can call 202-800-1711 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.

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.

Categories: vaccine injury

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