I am in a similar situation. I have service connected asthma and was denied secondary connection for OSA.
I few week ago I called the C&P examiner directly and asked him if he would reconsider his opinion because his report stated that asthma and sleep apnea are in no way related. I shared with him several articles which stated otherwise and also shared several BVA cases which granted sleep apnea as secondary to asthma (both directly and from aggravation). He told me that no one in the fort worth office has ever granted service connection for sleep apnea as secondary to asthma, but that I should refile and request service connection for asthma aggravating the sleep apnea. He stated that he would think about amending his notes to opine that my sleep apnea is at least as likely as not aggravated by my service connected asthma.
Well, today I looked at my notes on myHeathevet and noticed he amended the OSA DBQ to reflect the following:
02/18/2017 ADDENDUM STATUS: COMPLETED
With regard to the Veteran's OSA and potential aggravation from his asthma condition, I have reviewed the medical literature articles that the Veteran has kindly sent to me along with his medical history and problems and now I offer the following comments:
Whereas there is no current documented clinical evidence supporting direct causation of OSA by asthma, it is medically plausible to opine that asthmatic exacerbations with wheezing and shortness of breath at night can aggravate OSA by causing ineffective utilization of the CPAP apparatus due to the asthma attack because of inability to relax airways from the asthma.
Thus it is as least as likely as not that the Veteran's current OSA is clinically aggravated by his asthma.
Recent PFTs performed in Dallas on 1/26/2017 revealed inconsistent results, due to the fact that the Veteran could not produce enough airway pressure with hi s respirations for a satisfactory flow loop on the recording machine.
Results were as follows:
Pre % Predicted Post % Predicted
FVC 59 63
FEV1 63 64
FEV1/FVC 79 75
Thus, while the results were inconsistent, they do show a significant drop in both FVC and FEV1, which indicates to me that the asthma is currently symptomatic.
So, I am going to discuss with my VSO whether this is new and material evidence to submit a new claim or whether I should ask for reconsideration since the examiner changed his opinion on the initial exam.
I re-worded the language in the law to make the last sentence. I read that to mean, for example, if I present a journal article that shows sleep apnea is caused by bad haircuts, the VA has to take that as the truth until they can show that it's not even remotely possible or pure speculation. Wow.
If you can’t say:
“this evidence is impeachable by, or contradicted by evidence or known facts”, then
(even if you doubt that it’s true, but concede that it’s not pure speculation or beyond remote possibility),
it’s subject to Reasonable Doubt Doctrine and must be resolved in favor of the claimant
That's not the way the VA works in Massachusetts. You can state whatever you want, the VA will make a decision and the may or may not even acknowledge that you made a point. If a C&P doctor says "I doubt", you're done.
Jan 12th 2017 was not that long ago need to give it some more time...the retro is what holding things up...you will need 3 signatures to sign off on the award with that much retro.
btw Congratulations and enjoy!
Oh the information is official. The Review officer told me and American Legion rep during the review that he approved the CUE and IU, right then and there. This was a FORMAL taped review. No BS or word-of-mouth rumors.
My best estimate moneywise is somewhere around 90k, simply because one approved claim goes all the way back to 1990