Bunny Hauser, a California woman, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on June 14, against Merck & Co., alleging that it sold an unreasonably dangerous and ineffective shingles vaccine.
According to the complaint filed, Zostavax shingles vaccine caused the woman to develop a painful, itchy, and blistering rash, as well as other dermatological issues, leading to the very condition it was designed to prevent. The lawsuit also claims the symptoms have resulted in physical limitations not present prior to using the vaccine. Zostavax introduced in 2006 is used for prevention of shingles among older adults. It has been now replaced by the newer Shingrix vaccine. According to a study published in November 2018 in the BMJ, Shingrix is 85% more effective at preventing shingles than Zostavax.
Merck & Co. faces nearly 600 product liability claims, each raising similar allegations that the drugmaker failed to warn about the problems associated with the vaccine. Zostavax litigation is centralized before U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle III in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania under MDL No. 2848.