Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rare, degenerative brain disease. There are various forms of the disease, but one particular strain (known as iatrogenic CJD) was first identified in 1985 among recipients of cadaveric human growth hormone (HGH).

HGH was a product made from human pituitary glands processed in the UK by the Medical Research Council, and the HGH programme was started in 1959. Over the years approximately 1,800 children received treatment with HGH until the programme was abandoned in 1985. If you or a member of your family developed human growth hormone-related CJD, then our solicitors may be able to help you claim compensation.

One of the other forms of CJD (known as variant CJD, or vCJD) is associated with contaminated meat products, usually beef, and has been linked with BSE outbreaks (commonly known as Mad Cow Disease) in the 80s and 90s. We have extensive experience in helping our clients claim CJD compensation in both human growth hormone claims and cases of vCJD, and are here to help you too.

During the claims process, our lawyers will work closely with you to handle every aspect of your case, as well as ensuring you're able to access any care or support you need. Our exceptional knowledge and caring team has seen us ranked in the top band of law firms for defective product compensation claims by Chambers & Partners.

The majority of the claims we handle are on a No Win No Fee basis. This means that there's nothing for you to pay upfront, and that you won’t have to pay any legal fees if your claim isn’t successful*.

If you have any questions, or are interested in making a claim, call us today on 0800 056 4110 for a free initial consultation about your case, or contact us online and we'll get back to you.

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Human Hormone Growth Hormone-Related CJD Claims - More Information

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know If I Got CJD From Human Growth Hormone?

CJD is rare, and CJD caused by human growth hormone is even rarer. Only one type of human growth hormone was associated with a risk of CJD, and this was made by the Hartee Wilhemi process. Whether or not this type of HGH was given can be established through a person's medical records.

There are also a number of known treatment programmes where HGH was used. For example, from 1971-1984, a treatment programme was took place at Great Ormond Street Hospital. Children treated in the programme received allocations of growth hormone from batches processed by the Medical Research Council (MRC) with injections administered three times a week.

HGH was developed as a treatment for individuals of unusually short stature, and it was made using pituitary glands from deceased individuals. The MRC, funded by the UK government, started trials in 1959.

In July 1977 a link between HGH and CJD was acknowledged, but it was not until 1985 when patients started to develop CJD that the use of growth hormone developed from human pituitary glands was abandoned in the UK. HGH is still in use today, but only in a synthetic form.

Between 1991 and 1999, a series of trials took place at the High Court which found that the Department of Health was liable for cases of iatrogenic CJD, and should compensate patients who had been diagnosed if they'd been treated after 1 July 1977.

Testing for CJD is difficult and in most cases a firm diagnosis can only be made after the individual has died.

If you or a loved one has suffered from CJD and you're unsure if there's a link to HGH, we can help you establish whether or not this is the case. If CJD was not caused by HGH, you may still be able to claim, but the process may be different. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us on 0800 056 4110 or contact us online for a free initial consultation about your case.

What Are The Differences Between CJD And vCJD Claims?

Cases of variant CJD (vCJD) are dealt with by the vCJD Trust, which is a fund set up to compensate victims of vCJD and their families, with guidelines as to what compensation can be awarded and who is entitled to claim compensation.

The process is meant to be more straightforward than a standard compensation claim, but it doesn't stop you from making a claim through the courts if you wish, or if we believe you can achieve a higher settlement that way. We'll be able to advise you on this if it applies to your case.

CJD claims relating to HGH are dealt with by the Department of Health. There is no formal scheme for making a claim, so it will follow the normal claims process detailed above. If you or a loved one has received HGH, then we will need to prove through medical records that this has happened, and provide evidence of a CJD diagnosis, in order to make a claim.

It's also possible to make a psychiatric injury claim if you are what's known as 'worried well' – someone who can only be told that they have received potentially contaminated HGH, which may lead to this invariably fatal neurological condition, for which there is still no test and no cure.

If you have any questions, then please don't hesitate to get in touch with us – you can call us on 0800 056 4110 or contact us online for a free initial consultation, where we'll be glad to discuss your options.

Why Choose Irwin Mitchell For A CJD Compensation Claim?

Our experience in product liability, defective drug and medical negligence cases means we're expertly placed to handle Human Growth Hormone-Related CJD and vCJD claims. We've helped many clients claim compensation for their own illness, or for the loss of a loved one, and we may be able to help you too.

We have a great deal of experience in claiming compensation from both the Department of Health and the vCJD Trust, and we understand the physical difficulties, anger and lasting trauma which cases like these can cause. It can be difficult to know who is to blame and who ought to be held accountable for your illness or injury, and in these situations, it helps to have the experts on your side.

In 1992, when news broke that there was a risk of CJD connected with HGH treatments, we were one of the first two firms on the Legal Aid Steering Committee running the cases. We've been working on HGH claims since the very beginning, and have helped our clients claim settlements of between £3,500 and £300,000. Read more about our work on CJD cases

Helping our clients access the medical care and support they need, including physiotherapy, surgery and mental health support, as well as mobility aids and home modifications, is as important to us as pursuing financial compensation. This support is essential for adapting to life after an injury, and our approach has seen us win Post Magazine’s Rehabilitation Award for Claimant Solicitors on seven occasions.

If you have any questions about making a claim, or how we can help, then please don't hesitate to give us a call today on 0800 056 4110, or contact us online, for a free initial consultation on your case. We're here to help.

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