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    • I would like to thank everyone on the PTSD and TDIU forums for helping me reach my 100% rating.  My story began in 1975 when I was in AIT.  I was the only female in my unit and my DI thought he could take advantage of that fact.  I was sexually assaulted and tortured by this man for 8 weeks.  I told no-one.  The reason for mentioning these facts is to let other veterans suffering from MST know that there is hope no matter how many years have passed.  I received my 100% award 41 years and 15 days after my assault began.  I suffered with nightmares and flashbacks for all of those years.  I worked and provided a decent living for myself until March of this year when I was finally forced to take a medical retirement.  I am 63 and just had 2 more years to make it to retirement.  In 2014 I joined a PTSD Support Group.  For the first time I was able to tell my story.  My peers encouraged me to file a claim and I finally did.  My symptoms became much worse the more I opened up and I ended up losing my job.  The reality is I would have lost my life if I had not have met these amazing women.  My life is finally turning around and I am learning to control my anger and feel as though I deserve to live.  I never believed that anyone would believe my story after all of those years.  The person that investigated my claim uncovered some conversatIons that I had  with a Chaplin.  He had noted in my file that he thought I had been sexually assaulted even  though I never said those words.  I was amazed at how thorough this investigation was.  Please forgive my rambling, I just want others to know that there are claims personnel that really work hard to give us the benefits we deserve.  I spent hours reading the Had It forums to keep my self encouraged during the waiting time.  Thank you all so much for the support!
    • Can anyone give me a timeline on when I might receive any information in the mail? How long before back-pay?
    • I will have been on a CPAP come a year Dec. 1st.  As I understand I have to turn my CPAP into my local VAMC, which I assume is to show the actual usage in order to get prescribed for another year of usage. My question is what is VA looking for inside the CPAP besides obviously the conisitent usage, and what actual data is there for them to see and evaluate?  I read somewhere that they can see if your apneas have increased or decreased......is this true?  Has anyone ever actually gone from moderate or severe OSA to no apneas ? If this is true..........I do not understand how it can go lower in apneas when other conditions are still involved like allergies, sinus, deviated septum, etc.?  Just curious what is involved and what is the data is extracted from CPAP.  I do have a claim in for SA as a NOD.  Thanks for any help on this subject.
    • Some DRO's can't read either   I think the veterans claims should be decided at this level and if they were Most claims would be Awarded. It maybe just me but when a veteran has everything it takes to win a claim all the correct evidence & records all in the veteran favor and the rater don't read all of it and then the vet is denied,  Then vet files NOD  for a DRO Hearing (usually) they are other means to how the veteran wants his claim to be decided. Some times DRO Hearings are no good...it maybe just me but I truly think if the DRO don't like the veteran or just don't like his/her looks   they have a denial in mind, because when a veteran proves his case to a DRO and has everything needed for the DRO to make the Right Decision   they don't do that  instead they tell the veteran: ''ok well everything looks good  I will take this back to my desk and I'will read the evidence more and this may take a while so I'll let you know by letter in 60 days or less''  ect,,ect,,  to me that DRO knew he would deny that veteran...then the Appeals process begins a timely process, BVA Journey starts I -9 filed SOC read ect ect,,,  and the wait for a decision that should have already been made....This cost the VA more $$ b/c one day the veteran will win his/her claim  and get a lot of retro paid but what does the veteran do in the mean time....sometimes its to late (vet dies)  but the agony and worry's with the VA is carried on by this veteran family  and this should never happen but it happens everyday at the V A jmo ..........Buck
    • In July of '15, I appealed a denial of service connection for a R shoulder condition. I submitted actual copies of a shoulder injury from my Navy medical record, along with evidence of surgeries in 200 and 2015 done by non-VA doctors. At the same time, I filed for an increase in my cervical spine condition. Of course, nothing has happened yet, but it appears that the VA has lumped the two together as one "appeal." I submitted the paperwork under the direction of my NSO. I'm sure this question has been addressed here periodically, but I'd like a fresh opinion:
       As time goes by, I continue to be treated, tested, injected, etc. for both of these conditions; they are getting worse and worse and the NSO is encouraging me to go for and IU claim, but I still want to try to work. Also recently lost my wife to cancer so i'm the only income anymore. I've been told that submitting additional evidence causes your claim or appeal to go back to the beginning of the process. Is this true? Also, does the VA, when they do get around to looking at my appeal, automatically go through my record and look for information pertaining to my claim? I began using the VA system exclusively last fall, so the new information should be readily at hand. Do I have to go through and pick it out and submit it to them as supporting documentation, or will they find it on their own? If I need to submit, then it goes back to my question above; am I just moving my appeal father away from being considered? Aside from that, I recently got a favorable 10% for tinnitus. I was already at 90% and the new award doesn't push me to 100, but i guess it always helps to document it. Considering a subscription - these ads are a killer and make using the site a lot more confusing to me. Thanks for all the work you do, all of you! Jim





diablogun

New To Forum, Exam Upcoming On Psoriasis And Arhtritis

22 posts in this topic

Hi all,

I'm a new guy, and I've been perusing the posts, but haven't seen much about my condition. Next Tuesday I am going to my ratings physical (is it called this?) to have my service connected disabilities rated. I have Psoriasis and associated Psoriatic arthritis, and am wondering what I can expect from the rating. I have been on immunosuppressive drugs for more than 3 years for the Psoriasis, so according to the schedule that should be 60%?

For the arthritis, I have it in my back, knees, wrists, hands, and to a lesser extent in 1 shoulder and both ankles. Does anyone have any idea if they lump these all together, as it seems to indicate under ratings code 5002? Any information offered is much appreciated, I am pretty new to this process.

Thank you in advance :-)

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http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Benefits/exams/index.htm

These are the blank C & P exams- which is what I think you mean by the ratings physical.

There might be something there that shows you what to expect.

Also the BVA web site has claims similiar to your condition and if you put psoriasis and arthritis into the BVA search engine they will come- I saw 4 for 2008 but the weather affected my connection-

I see that you are 90% SC- are you able to work- and if not have you applied for TDIU and SSA?

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http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Benefits/exams/index.htm

These are the blank C & P exams- which is what I think you mean by the ratings physical.

There might be something there that shows you what to expect.

Also the BVA web site has claims similiar to your condition and if you put psoriasis and arthritis into the BVA search engine they will come- I saw 4 for 2008 but the weather affected my connection-

I see that you are 90% SC- are you able to work- and if not have you applied for TDIU and SSA?

Hello :-)

I put 90% because I had to put something when I registered. I am assuming 60% for the psoriasis and perhaps 60 or 70 for the arthritis, which would make it 90%. I can presently work, though the arthritis causes constant pain, I will put off the IU as long as I can hold a job. If the time comes that working is too difficult, is that the time that I should put in for SSA? I hope I never have to do that. Anyway, thank you for the information :-)

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Diablogun,

I filed a claim in March 2007 for both Psoriatic Arthritis and psoriasis, I was rated at 60% in May of this year (60% for psoriatic arthritis and 10% for psoriasis). I have filed a NOD because I have taken on Methrotrextate (immunosuppressive drug) every week for the past three years to treat both, if successful my rating for psoriasis should increase to 60%. Also I filed my first claim almost 17 years after my discharge from active duty.

Here's what was in my rating letter:

Psoriatic Arthritis:

We have granted your claim for service connection for your psoriatic arthritis because evidence shows that this disability developed as a result of the inservice psoriasis. We have assigned a 60 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim treatment records from your private physicians show that you have been treated for this condition since early 2006. The records show that you have been treated with methotrexate with significant relief of symptoms. Your disease remains in the active phase. In 2007 you underwent surgery for significant left wrist disability. VA examination shows that both wrists elbows and hands are affected as well as the ankles and feet. You have flares about every month or two lasting for 1 to 2 days, relieved by Celebrex and rest. There is some loss of motion in the elbows, wrists, knees, feet and hips. There is no ankylosis. The hands show boutonniere deformity of all fingers except the thumb and little finger on the left. There is a gap between the finger and proximal transverse crease of hand of the left of 1 to 2 inches. On the right there is no gap. Range of motion of the right thumb is from 0 to 20 degrees and on the left from 0 to 30 degrees. There was no painful motion. The examiner states that this condition is due to the psoriasis incurred during military service.

An evaluation of 60 percent is assigned for an active process with weight loss and anemia productive of severe impairment of health, severely incapacitating exacerbations occurring four or more times a year, or a lesser number over prolonged periods. A higher evaluation of 100 percent is not warranted unless there is a totally incapacitating process with constitutional manifestations and active joint involvement.

Since there is a likelihood of improvement, the assigned evaluation is not considered permanent and is subject to a future review examination.

Psoriasis:

We have granted your claim for service connection for psoriasis because service medical records show that this condition began during military service. We have assigned a 10 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim. Your service treatment records show that your psoriasis began on your knees in 1987. Subsequent to service you have continued to receive treatment in the form of topical creams and corticosteroid (Cordran) tape. VA examination shows that currently the psoriasis covers 18 percent of exposed areas and 15 percent of non exposed areas. The face is normal with scaly psoriasiform lesions over the elbows and also the dorsal surface of the hands. The skin on the body is within normal limits. An evaluation of 10 percent is assigned for evidence of at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of the entire body, or at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of exposed areas affected, or; intermittent systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of less than six weeks during the past 12-month period. A higher evaluation of 30 percent is not warranted unless the record shows 20 to 40 percent of the entire body or 20 to 40 percent of exposed areas affected, or; systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of six weeks or more, but not constantly, during the past 12- month period.

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Diablogun,

I filed a claim in March 2007 for both Psoriatic Arthritis and psoriasis, I was rated at 60% in May of this year (60% for psoriatic arthritis and 10% for psoriasis). I have filed a NOD because I have taken on Methrotrextate (immunosuppressive drug) every week for the past three years to treat both, if successful my rating for psoriasis should increase to 60%. Also I filed my first claim almost 17 years after my discharge from active duty.

Here's what was in my rating letter:

Psoriatic Arthritis:

We have granted your claim for service connection for your psoriatic arthritis because evidence shows that this disability developed as a result of the inservice psoriasis. We have assigned a 60 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim treatment records from your private physicians show that you have been treated for this condition since early 2006. The records show that you have been treated with methotrexate with significant relief of symptoms. Your disease remains in the active phase. In 2007 you underwent surgery for significant left wrist disability. VA examination shows that both wrists elbows and hands are affected as well as the ankles and feet. You have flares about every month or two lasting for 1 to 2 days, relieved by Celebrex and rest. There is some loss of motion in the elbows, wrists, knees, feet and hips. There is no ankylosis. The hands show boutonniere deformity of all fingers except the thumb and little finger on the left. There is a gap between the finger and proximal transverse crease of hand of the left of 1 to 2 inches. On the right there is no gap. Range of motion of the right thumb is from 0 to 20 degrees and on the left from 0 to 30 degrees. There was no painful motion. The examiner states that this condition is due to the psoriasis incurred during military service.

An evaluation of 60 percent is assigned for an active process with weight loss and anemia productive of severe impairment of health, severely incapacitating exacerbations occurring four or more times a year, or a lesser number over prolonged periods. A higher evaluation of 100 percent is not warranted unless there is a totally incapacitating process with constitutional manifestations and active joint involvement.

Since there is a likelihood of improvement, the assigned evaluation is not considered permanent and is subject to a future review examination.

Psoriasis:

We have granted your claim for service connection for psoriasis because service medical records show that this condition began during military service. We have assigned a 10 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim. Your service treatment records show that your psoriasis began on your knees in 1987. Subsequent to service you have continued to receive treatment in the form of topical creams and corticosteroid (Cordran) tape. VA examination shows that currently the psoriasis covers 18 percent of exposed areas and 15 percent of non exposed areas. The face is normal with scaly psoriasiform lesions over the elbows and also the dorsal surface of the hands. The skin on the body is within normal limits. An evaluation of 10 percent is assigned for evidence of at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of the entire body, or at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of exposed areas affected, or; intermittent systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of less than six weeks during the past 12-month period. A higher evaluation of 30 percent is not warranted unless the record shows 20 to 40 percent of the entire body or 20 to 40 percent of exposed areas affected, or; systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of six weeks or more, but not constantly, during the past 12- month period.

Hi John,

I am assuming the arthritis will break down in the same fashion as yours. My heart goes out to you, this disease is horrible. Did you tell them of the methotrexate during your C&P? I don't really want to have to appeal. I am surprised they only rated you 10% knowing you had been on immunosuppressive drugs. I am bringing my prescriptions and letter from my private doctor about the Enbrel I have injected for the psoriasis for almost 4 years.

Please let me know anything you can about the examination for the arthritis; did they take x-rays? Did they test each joint? Are all of your joints affected? Thank you for any information you may have :-)

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Yes, I told the C&P doctor that I was on MTX for both, he even noted that I have seen a "enormous improvement on the skin" since I started taken MTX on my C&P report. The rating letter only mentions this for the arthritis.

All of my joints a affected, some are worse such as my wrists and knees.

The C&P Doc used the exam work sheets http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Benefits/exams/index.htm for "Shoulder, Elbow, Wrist, Hip, Knee, and Ankle" and "Hand, Thumb, and Fingers". Yes they did X-rays for all joints and used a goniometer to measure the ROM of each joint. He will also ask you alot of questions on how each joint impacts your daily activities, work and how ofen you have flares.

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