Shingles is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox. Its symptoms are a painful rash that can burn and blister. In some people, the shingles vaccine itself can cause serious side effects and permanent injuries.
The shingles vaccine has been linked to eye injuries, including acute retinal necrosis or necrotizing retinitis (inflammatory eye condition), as well as nervous system disorders such as acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) and encephalitis (brain inflammation), in addition to more general symptoms like weakness and nerve pain. Some have also reported allergic-like reactions and pain near and around the injection site.
Unlike many vaccines that can cause these types of injuries, the shingles vaccine is unfortunately not covered by the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. While patients can file lawsuits related to their shingles vaccine-related injuries, there presently is no avenue for compensation through the vaccine program as there is for many other vaccines to recover for pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical bills.