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Senior Chief Petty Officer
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rpowell01 last won the day on October 11 2015

rpowell01 had the most liked content!

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About rpowell01

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    E-8 Senior Chief Petty Officer
  • Birthday 09/30/1968

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    Trying to deal with my pain. Everyday, all day. Research, research and more research.

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  • Service Connected Disability
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    Fishing whenever I can..

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  1. I guess I should chime in. I went with Dr Bash, who first reviewed all my records then a year later I flew to DC, I think JFK, and Dr Bash did a full head to toe exam, clothed, on me in the airport, right inside Starbucks!!!!!!! Today im 90% IU and P&T!! I should be SMC but decided to stop other claims and now new stuff arising from SCd issues. May e in the future I may file but for now I just done with everything VA.. Dr Bash knows his stuff and the SSDI Judge said in her own decision hismedical opinion held more weight than any VA MD becausethe VA hid th eir own EMG reports from her!!!!!!!!!I had to give her the reports at the hearing in 2014!!! Bestof luck on who you choose… Hes been 100% correct on my diagnosis every single one of them...
  2. Yes sir it has helped very much so far. I had to start slow because I was at first getting night sweats taking that medication but after talking to my pharmacists he said it has to get into my system so cut it in half. So I did that for about 2 weeks and decided to take 3 full ones in one day...NO NO!! Man I was hearing and seeing things not there. So I had to cut it back in half. I had to do a little more research and well since I take pain killers which also releases Dopamine I was getting too much of it which caused me hearing and seeing things not there. So now I will take one full one in the morning then one half one in the afternoon/evening. It has brought my pain levels down from a good 8 to a 6 but I still have a lot of bad days because of an issue between my shoulder blades which I believe I am going to really need surgery there or in my neck very soon. Anybody here who has Spondylosis knows what I'm talking about, you can feel the changes happening. Now, on a good note, I do have more energy and one of the side effects from this medication is it will bring your Testosterone Levels back up. I will say my wife is loving every bit of it!!!!! Whenever all this pain hit me hard in 2010 it went to once every two months, now we are back "baby"...LOL Seriously some of you should give this a try, it really works.
  3. Sorry for such a late reply. I tested Medical Marijuana here in Florida for about a month or two and all that stuff did to me was cause me to sleep all day and all night. What kind of life is that? CBD oils does nothing even the CBD they were selling at these "medical marijuana shops" here in Florida. I tried everything they had because my Pain Management MD told me I had to find what works for me. I just felt stoned all the time, and well that is no life for me. It didn't matter if I took a full 5 second hit or a 1 second hit man I was OUT COLD..... I'm sorry to say that stuff doesn't work for everyone. IMHO I believe Florida Legislation for example, should create a new law forcing pharmaceuticals who sells their medications here in Florida to open up a testing facility here in Florida to see if they can come up with a pill form of it. If they did that I bet it would help because these folks who are currently growing and creating the oils really do not have the background education like many of the Pharm doctors / chemists do nor do they have the hardware they use. I don't want to be stuck on these pain killers the rest of my life.
  4. They may but its real cheap medication. If the VA doesn't go to your local MD and ask him just show him the studies done on it. This may be the medication we really need....
  5. Nope its just a Parkinsons Medication and I can tell you in one week it has CHANGED MY LIFE. I started taking it last Wednesday, January 9, 2019, and yes since I decided NOT to fill my monthly Extended Release Pain Killers and only the instant release I have noticed a HUGE, HUGE change. My T-Levels have risen once again and my sex drive has gone way, way up which the love of my life has enjoyed it. I've been dealing with this muscle spasm next to my shoulder blade for about 4 months, its still there, and trust me it has nagged me so bad, Its very painful. My local PCP says its coming from my neck and he is sending me to see a surgeon. Please understand this is my medical issues: 1. I have Moderate to Severe Cervical Spondylosis. For people who do not understand Spondylosis its a combination of Cervical DDD and DJD. My discs are deteriorating progressively and as of right now, currently, I don't have any cartilage left on the back side joints. So my neck has bone on bone rubbing. In Jan 2010 I awoke with tingling in my arms and hands and muscle spasms in my pectoral muscles. One year later I had an ESI which helped the tingling go away. In 2011 I had Physical Therapy, outsourced by the VA and after a 4 week session of that therapy I ended up with Crepitus in my neck, basically bone on bone because cartilage disappeared. A Feb 2011 MRI showed THREE herniations, one at C2-3, C5-6 and C6-7. I presented this MRI to the VA and since that time I have been denied decompression surgery THREE times by the same ole' surgeon by the name of Dr. Graham who is a contractor for both James A. Haley and Bay Pines. He is the one who decides who needs surgery. 2. I have spondylosis throughout both Thoracic and Lumbar Spine. In June 2016 my L5-S1 herniated, again denied surgery from the VA. Now I live with Chronic Bilateral Radiculopathy and Bilateral PolyNeuropathy. Besides my spine issues I have lived with Thyroids issues caused by the pain killers I've been taking since 2014 because I now have GRAVES Disease. Yes Pain Killers will kill your thyroid and I should have filed a claim on this but I have decided I am done with filing claims because I'm TDIU and P&T. I do have 2 contentions about to be heard at the VA Board, one is Bladder Incontinence and the other one Bowel Incontinence. The Bladder isn't has bad now like it use to be but the bowel issues are bad. if I didn't take pain killers I would have to wear a diaper which i REFUSE to. I'm only 50 and don't want to go there just yet. Anyway, its been 7 days and I can tell you I REALLY FEEL the difference. Whenever I get struck with pain I keep going compared to before where the pain would have me stuck in bed. I am up now playing my audio keyboard/Piano more. I'm an avid pianist self taught for 20+ years now. Its what helps my pain levels and keep my brain exercised. I pray more veterans will try this medication, give it a shot because I can tell you the pain killers only work for so long. I've been taking them since Sept 2013 and can tell you I don't want to take them anymore, they are NO GOOD for your body or liver. I was on Morphine ER and Oxycodone for a few years, weaned myself off both and told my local pain management doctor we have to try something else because ANY medication like that only last for so long. So he said we would try Hydrocodone and Hysingla. They only work for a couple of months and now my body is use to them. Next month I am going to request and increase in the Carbidopa/Levodopa because right now I only get 10/100mgs of that stuff. Remember DOPAMINE is also activated with Tramadol but with Tramadol you can actually overdose or get Serotonin Syndrome which will kill you. You cannot overdose on Carbidopa/Levodopa but you can have withdraws if you suddenly stop taking it but thats with any medication. I use to take Topimax and let me tell you I ended up in the ER because I suddenly stopped taking it. The withdraws of that was worse than opiods because I could not move my arms nor legs. It was like I was paralyzed. Crazy stuff. Talk to your MDs and show them printing research on this medication, IT WORKS trust me.
  6. I’ve been doing my own research on pain and using other meds besides the opioids. I was watching some documentary and came across this. The brain actually gets rewired because of chronic pain. The chemicals in the brain gets all out of whack and we who are in chronic pain gets addicted to pain. This addiction is not an addiction on narcotics or alcohol but it’s a brain addiction without the cravings. Read this below to understand more in detail: https://www.iflscience.com/brain/parkinsons-drug-could-treat-patients-chronic-pain/ The medication Carbidopa/Levodopa causes our bodies to release dopamine in the brain which in turn helps with pain. This medication was first used for Parkinson’s and after attempting to get the BA to prescribe it and getting the normal denial I was able to get my local Pain Management MD to prescribe it to me. Its been 5 days since I began taking it and it has cut my pain in half, down 50%. This has allowed me to not even get any extended release pain meds filled. I use to take Oxycodone and Morphine ER but had enough of them a few months ago so I requested a switch to Hydrocodone and once a day HYSINGLA ER. So now I only take Hydrocodone and if the Carbidopa/Levodopa keeps working I will come off the Hydrocodone. As as of right now I have no withdraws from the ER meds whatsoever. I don’t know if this is due to more dopamine being released in my brain or what but I’m still stun this med is working. No thanks to the VA this could be the medication we need and if it works on me I’m sure it will help others. Best of Luck
  7. More people die each year due to alcohol related issues and accidents where’s the outcry over this?
  8. I have a daughter who is a Junior in college utiling Chapter 36 Benefits… So, Since she is using those benefits I do not receive any dependency pay because of this… But my question is this, during the summer months she does not receive any pay for Chapt 35… So, Since she does not receive any Chapter 35 pay during those summer months shouldn’t the VA pay me dependent pay? I have not found any CFR, policy or law that says anything otherwise so I’m thinking the VA is just being real lazy of setting this up for us veterans!!!! your thoughts opinions needed and as always thank you in advanced!!!! Rob
  9. I received a letter from DOD Finance and Accounting, DOT and IRS all on letter head. It appears in December 2016 the POTUS signed the Combat-Injured Veterans Tax Fairness Act of 2016 into law. What this does is if you were separated from the military due to disability your severance was TAXED and it shouldn't have been taxed. So Congress fixed it so you can get your money back. Your injury while on active duty happened: 1 Resulted Directly from Armed Conflicts, or 2. Took place while you were engaged in extra hazardous duty, or 3. Took place under conditions simulating war, including training exercises such as maneuvers, or 4. Was caused by an instrumentality of war. The Standard Tax Amounts are: $1750 for tax years 1991-2005 $2400 for tax years 2006-2010 $3200 for tax years 2011-2016 The above is if you don't want to go through the hassle and call IRS to figure out how much exactly what taken out. You can just use the standard tax amounts. I recall they took approx $2400 out of my severance pay not no $1750 so I don't know where the IRS gets that from. Anyway if you received this letter I would file to get that money back because its yours and belongs to you!!! If you haven't and you were given a severance pay and they took out taxes I would get a hold of the IRS and or the DOD to figure out why you didn't get a letter. I'm sending my 1040X along with a copy of the letter to IRS so lets see what happens. BTW You only have ONE YEAR FROM DATE OF LETTER TO FILE TO GET THAT MONEY BACK!!! I don't know if I put this is the right topic or nor, my apologize... Here is more info on the ACT: https://www.thetaxadviser.com/news/2016/dec/injured-veterans-improperly-withheld-taxes-201615746.html Rob
  10. I’ve been taking 100mg CBD and they don’t work that much for the nerve and muscle pain… But it does wonders for my cervicogenic headaches I get all the time… I really want a very high dose of CBD with a very low THC… From my research and studies from college some years ago CBD alone won’t work good by itself… With low THC the CBD actually helps the THC which is a type of cannabidiol… I’ve been reading nothing but great news about it so I hope what I read is great news for me… I’m a Bible Thumper and believe with all my heart in the Word… I also believe that there is a medicinal use for this plant that our creator actually gave us to use…Do not get me wrong I’m all against people wanting to use it just to get a high… My pain doctor is conducting a study a study hopefully other PM doctors here in Florida are doing the same… He wants me to take the capsules but after looking at the price online at the dispensary I sent him a message and told him I could not afford that… Just for 25 capsules I would have to pay $60 and well that is way way too much for the quantity of pills, so I’m going to go with the vape pen… I’m also going to start a journal to help him with his studies because I believe this is very important for everyone in pain… I will let you know how it turns out…
  11. That are now on medical marijuana for pain please give details of the best one you found to work. I am looking for a strain or type that will give me energy, take care of the pain but won't get me stoned!!! I do know I am going to get a little high with the THC but I am not looking to get such a high that I cannot do anything. I am now just waiting for the State of Florida folks to enter me into the database so I can go do the dispensary. I've been looking over the brochure the PM office gave me to the dispensary I am going to go to. Around where I live I have to travel an hour away to the nearest one. To understand how the dosages work they don't provide anything in milligrams whenever it comes to THC. They use RATIOS. So for example they have a 25:1 which means 25 THC to 1 CBD, or 1:25 which means 1 THC to 25 CBD. My PM marijuana doctor told me NOT to just get one kind but to buy a few of them to figure out which one works best for me. What I have to do is buy one that gives energy and pain and then at night one that will help me sleep. Anyway I haven't messed with marijuana since I was still green behind the ears, in my teens. Tried it a few times back then and I laughed my buttocks off. Is there anybody here who is using it now, please leave some reviews.
  12. I asked the question right after I sent a secured message to my PCP and he just responded yesterday stating he did not know about the outside study that showed OSA. I just replied and told him to look back at the secured messages as I told him back in Sept or October 2015 I had the study done outside of the VA because I felt the VA was completely wrong on their study or something went wrong with it to show a negative result which does happen a lot with these crappy home studies they do. So he wants me to fax the report of the study not the prescription to CPAP clinic (pulmonary I'm guessing). FINGERS CROSSED!!! And thanks for the Info. And yes I could have filed a claim on this even though I'm 100% and it would fall in as an extra scheduler but like I said in my original post this is about my health not about filing any claim. I haven't had a good nights sleep more than two days in a row in over 2 years!!!! I may get one good nights sleep once in awhile but it doesn't happen that much. I have read that the medical marijuana helps with the sleep apnea so I am now just waiting for the Florida Department of Health Compassionate Use to set me up on their side. My Pain management doctor has already done his part and I've sent them all the applications and fees. Just waiting for them. I cannot wait, I've been off the Morphine Sustain Release for over 2-3 weeks now (been in a lot of pain though) and I'm only on the Oxycodone. Once I get approved for the medical marijuana I am going to do a quick wean off the Oxycodone because I am telling you those opioids have caused so many problems all by themselves that its not worth taking them any longer. From my Thyroid being totally messed up for the rest of my life to Sleep Apnea its just not worth it any longer!!!
  13. Back in late 2014 or early 2015 I had sleep study conducted at the Tampa VA. Of course they came back saying I was fine and didn't have Obstructed Sleep Apnea. But my PCP sure sent me to the ENT clinic to allow them to do surgery by taking out my tonsiles and clipping my uvula (spelling). Of course I refused because something did not feel nor sound right. I would and still do wake up with shortness of breath, heart racing and in sweating from head to toe. So I decided to go outside of the VA and well, well, well they said I have severe OSA and my NON VA PCP said I NEEDED a CPAP. Well after about 6 months they had to come and pick up the CPAP because I could not use it. I tried both the mouth and nose fittings but I would rip it off every single time. The OSA is still there and I haven't found a way to deal with it. I have had enough and talked with NON-VA Pain Management and he told me exactly what I needed to do to overcome me ripping off the mask at night. So I get a hold of my VA PCP to see if he will order me a CPAP and again he wants to send me to the pulmonary clinic to have the test done again. I just sent him a message asking him if I give him the sleep study test report outside of the VA will he order CPAP. My question is this, is the VA mandated to accept NON-VA medical reports on studies like this? Because one study done by the VA didn't show I had OSA doesn't mean I don't have OSA because another study shows I have it. What is the VA's policy about this? You would think since this is a very import issue where I could end up dying in my sleep he would accept the report. He has not answered yet but I would like to know ahead of time just in case he says they cannot use NON-VA test reports. This is not about filing claims and I am NOT going to file a claim on this issue, I am done with filing claims since I am P&T even though I know I can get the extra schedule. I just want to get a CPAP because I cannot take this any longer!!!! I know this is in fact a secondary issue I want the VA to provide the CPAP because with medicare its too expensive.
  14. I’m up here in Jefferson City, Tennessee currently for two weeks on vacation… Being from Florida this place is like night vs daycompared to Florida…To be honest I have been looking at houses online for sale all around this area… I haven’t used my VA Home Certificate yet because the bank I use now is a private local bank so they don’t use or accept the VA Certificate… Anyway I just love this place/area and right now I’m researching and really thinking of selling out in Florida and moving up here… Tennessee doesn’t have the full exemption on property taxes that Florida has but the cost of living is so cheap here that it works out the same… I live in a small county of roughly 30,000 people in Florida and our gas prices are high approx. 2.40 currently but here it’s only 2.12 and lower… The houses per square feet is way way cheaper here compared to where I’m from in Florida… So right now I owe $79k on my home currently… I had utilized the SHIP program which is a grant that is given to help with down payments on your home… After 20 years of living in the home the grant doesn’t have to be paid back!! If you live in the home between 10-15 years toy have to pay back I think 50% of the grant if you sellout and between 15-20 you only pay back 25%… We paid $120k and approx $23k was granted to us from SHIP…If I can make at least $20k tp help put down on a home up here I’m selling out and moving… Im tired of Florida, I’ve been there my whole life my my duty stations while in the Army and I’m ready for a change… I’m 49 years old and well I want to live in a higher altitude because It feels better on my whole spine…
  15. I agree ADs help the site very much and without them we would not have HADIT. Thank you Tbird for doing what you do.
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