AchillesH replied to AchillesH's question in VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims Research ForumThank you gentlemen for the info and feedback. I called the patient advocate today and I will see them tomorrow about changing my care provider. John999, my wife has been pushing me to go to a private doctor but I have been putting it off due to income. I didn't enroll in the state health exchange because I had VA healthcare, but it seems I should check out the exchange as well. Guess I was just being naive thinking that the staff at the VA wouldn't intentionally or negligently screw me over. Thanks again for the input everyone.
AchillesH posted a question in VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims Research ForumEvening, First, thank you for reading this post. Being my first post I know its long, but thank you for reading and for all the amazing information on this site. I served for 4 years in a Stryker Infantry Battalion as a 19 Kilo, with one deployment to Iraq. I was honorably discharged Feb 2012. Current I am receiving 50% total disability, but the current issue is with my Degenerative Disc Disease, which is rated at 10%. I am a 27 year old male, I stay and shape and I eat healthy. Since Janurary of this year I have been dealing with a herniated disc that has limited practically all of my functionality. I've only been able to see my VA primary care provider 4 times. I am currently undergoing a 3rd month of physical therapy and had an EMG test done. My primary care provider has only done 2 X-rays, and when I asked him for an MRI (which a nurse at the hospital told me to do) he said, "only if I am considering surgery." He then followed it with "this isn't the Department of Defense, can't give MRI's for everything." Today, when I confronted my primary care provider about my degenerative disc disease, he reverted back to saying everyone has DDD, and that he has no idea why the VA is giving me compensation for it. He also through in, this is normal for someone my age. I then proceeded to explain why I am so worried. I am 27, can't apply for work when I can barely walk, beside the fact I havn't been able to bend over or reach in 7 months. He said not to worry about the income and that everything eventually finds its way. He then proceeded to tell me that we all die from one thing or another and that everything we do leads us more into the disease that will kill us. He then itterated that I was not going to die. When I asked him if he thought this was service connected, he immediately said no. He began to explain about, yes in the military we go through some stuff, rucking and running, but it is no different from the wear and tear that civillians face. He is now sending me back to the EMG specialist for I don't know what. He says she'll give me more answers, even though I've already seen her....and asked her these questions. We also don't have any concrete evidence that its a herniated disc because it didn't show on an X-Ray; although the physical therapists thinks it is a herniated disc. He said the meeting with the EMG doctor again might show that I have a tear in a nerve now. I understand everyone has DDD, but what I find hard to believe is that everyone is incapacitated for 7+ months in their late 20's due to a herniated disc that just randomly pops out. I am not asking for a handout and I am not lazy. I am working on my second degree because thats all I can do at the moment. I just don't know what to do, especially when all three of these experts say they don't know why the VA is giving me a % for DDD and that I will continue to go through this the rest of my life, and that what I am going through now is not in any way connected to DDD. Is he treating me like some drone who will believe whatever he says or am I overreacting? Thank you for your time, service and any input you can offer.