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bigoc

Trichinella

Question

I hope to offer some help and direction with GWI.  Some may not benefit from this post but I hope to offer some help where possible.

I have been recently diagnosed with trichinellosis.  I deployed to Iraq in '03-'04 and had a whole host of symptoms that are consistent with what some have described as the multi-symptom mysterious illness.  I will forgo describing everything I experienced unless someone needs to hear it again.  I will say I had the initial symptoms along with the follow on problems that have lingered for over 6 years.   I will also say that I do believe there are other causes to GWI and that my situation does not explain away the illness but may be responsible for a portion of the cases.  

Trichinella is a food born parasite that is not seen in the US except for a handful(about 12 a year) of cases.  Of this parasite there are 8 know sub-species.  Most of these run there course and then lay dormant in the muscle and do not cause much of a problem other than mild muscle weakness.  These are called Trichinella spiralis.  I have been diagnosed with Trichinella pseudospiralis.  I would tell you to google the two types as I don't want to be your sole source of info.  As far as I know I am the only known case of this type in the US.  T. pseudospiralis is different from T. spiralis in that it continues to cause problems to include the brain and heart.  T. spiralis is known by US doctors but not pseudospiralis and hence why I could not get anyone to treat it.  This is a complicated parasite and I would be glade to give some more info about it if anyone wants.  There are signs in normal CBC blood test that could point to this being your problem instead of just blindly going for a test.  And believe me most doctors will not test for this.  I had many infectious disease specialist overlook this parasite because it is so rare here.  You have to research this from overseas sources as there is very little in the US medical community on this topic.

I hope this helps someone and again I would be glad to give more info to anyone interested and describe the specifics of my case.  I can do it in open forum I just did not want to complicate this initial post anymore than I already have.

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Have you filed a formal claim for this?

If so what is the status of the claim?

I would imagine parasites unknown to the USA can be found in every part of the world and their affect to veterans could be devastating- I am thinking of the leichiamaniasis case-the veterans's entire family was impacted on by this disease due to parasite.

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I have filed for all of the complications such as joint pain and arthritis, skin disorder, IBS, and I think my sleep apnea may be related.  Unrelated, I have a fairly significant TBI claim in pending a rating.  But to answer your question I am not sure what I would claim on this one.  I have to go back through the schedule for ratings and see if I can find something to fit unless someone has some suggestions.  I guess I could just file a claim and put trichinellosis in the conditions block and see what they do with it.  It would be an interesting claim as it can be treated but there is not much research on how much of a full eradication the treatment results.  

I am very early on in my diagnosis.  I have been chasing down symptoms for the last 6 years and now I am trying to get someone to treat me and that has not been the easiest task.  I am going to a private doctor to see what he can do and I am also going to give the VA a try.  I have medical reports from cases of this overseas and the treatment is several weeks of anti-parasite medication.  I do not know if the medical community has treated this here.  I have not had much luck finding doctors that  even understand that there is different types of this parasite and that some are still active years later and do not turn into a cyst.  

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I have filed for all of the complications such as joint pain and arthritis, skin disorder, IBS, and I think my sleep apnea may be related. Unrelated, I have a fairly significant TBI claim in pending a rating. But to answer your question I am not sure what I would claim on this one. I have to go back through the schedule for ratings and see if I can find something to fit unless someone has some suggestions. I guess I could just file a claim and put trichinellosis in the conditions block and see what they do with it. It would be an interesting claim as it can be treated but there is not much research on how much of a full eradication the treatment results.

I am very early on in my diagnosis. I have been chasing down symptoms for the last 6 years and now I am trying to get someone to treat me and that has not been the easiest task. I am going to a private doctor to see what he can do and I am also going to give the VA a try. I have medical reports from cases of this overseas and the treatment is several weeks of anti-parasite medication. I do not know if the medical community has treated this here. I have not had much luck finding doctors that even understand that there is different types of this parasite and that some are still active years later and do not turn into a cyst.

I am rated as undiagnosed illness(I call it desert storm syndrome). One of the cluster of my conditions is a skin disorder. They have given it a diagnosis..thereby eliminating it from undiagnosed..as follicolitis..what a crock..later called excema..then dermatitis...it spreads intermittently and now is controlled with a real good pill..after shots of steroids...What is really helping it is my allergy shots.

Hope that info helps in some small way.

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