SIRVA and Needle Injuries from Vaccines

If you have received a vaccine and then developed severe shoulder pain, you likely feel confused and scared. Shoulder pain is a common side effect of vaccines, but sometimes it becomes severe and spreads. When it reaches this type of severity it is known as a Shoulder Injury Related to Vaccine Administration (SIRVA). SIRVA can occur when a healthcare professional incorrectly administers a vaccine. It may have nothing to do with the contents of the vaccine itself. SIRVA is perhaps the most common adverse reaction and is seen in many vaccines such as childhood vaccines and seasonal flu shots. If you have experienced any symptoms of SIRVA after receiving a vaccine, it is important to speak with a medical professional and experienced vaccine attorney right away. You may be entitled to financial compensation.

Download our Guide to Vaccine-Related Injuries



SIRVA symptoms are similar to that of other shoulder injuries. The main symptoms include persistent shoulder pain and decreased range of motion.  In more severe situations, patients might visit their doctors several months after receiving a vaccine as a result of their inability to complete typical activities that were once possible. This causes an overall decreased quality of life. These patients are often diagnosed with inflammatory injuries such as bursitis and adhesive capsulitis. 


There is no standard treatment for SIRVA since each case is different. However, most people who suffer from SIRVA will require some type of medical intervention. Luckily there are a variety of treatments

  • Rest: Since SIRVA involves muscle inflammation, simply resting can lead to recovery. 
  • Physical Therapy: A physical therapist can help increase and improve your range of motion and speed up the healing process. 
  • Pain Medication: In some cases over the counter medicines like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help reduce the pain. In other cases, a doctor may prescribe a stronger pain medicine. 
  • Steroid Injections: Your doctor may prescribe a steroid medicine as a way to suppress inflammation and pain. 
  • Surgery: SIRVA may cause a condition that can be aided by surgery. In these cases, an orthopedic surgeon will recommend a specific procedure.  


Individuals who have suffered from SIRVA after receiving a covered vaccine can be compensated through the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP).   The NVICP is a federal program that was created to compensate people who have been injured by certain vaccines. In order to take advantage of the program, you must file a petition with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. There are specific rules that must be followed when submitting a claim. An experienced vaccine attorney can help you navigate the process and help ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. 


The amount of compensation you can receive is dependent on your situation, the severity of your symptoms, and how long they lasted. With some exceptions, there typically is no set compensation amount for specific vaccine injuries. However, depending on the severity of your vaccine-related injuries and damages, the compensation you receive can be substantial.  Receiving compensation through the NVICP is complex, which is why it’s important to consult with a vaccine injury lawyer. An experienced vaccine attorney will be able to help you better understand your options.  SIRVA is a common adverse reaction that can have serious effects on your day-to-day life. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries through the VICP. Don't wait. There are deadlines to file your claim. The experienced vaccine injury attorneys at the Law Offices of DuPont and Blumenstiel can help. Call us today at 614-389-9711 for a case evaluation. 

Want to learn more about the NVICP? Download our Consumer's Guide to Vaccine-Related Injuries here.