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Bluntly

Seaman
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Bluntly last won the day on June 21

Bluntly had the most liked content!

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About Bluntly

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    E-3 Seaman

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  • Military Rank
    E-4

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  • Branch of Service
    US Marines

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  1. Bluntly

    100 PERCENT or NOT???

    Roger that!!!
  2. Bluntly

    100 PERCENT or NOT???

    That about answers my question brother! Appreciate the insight alot and will keep yall posted on my process and progress just in life in general. This site just feels like family.
  3. Bluntly

    100 PERCENT or NOT???

    Currently, I have a tbi appeal at the board and waiting for a hearing. I also suffered from a tbi that happened in service and documented but not diagnosed. Also, i was wondering what would be the benefits if appeal the decision? Im getting paid at 100 but still remained at 70 for ptsd.... I guess what I'm asking is why would i want to appeal this decision?
  4. Bluntly

    100 PERCENT or NOT???

    May 26, 2018 i was approved for tdiu p&t. Effective date was Dec. 12, 2017 the day i applied for it. Thanks to all for listening to me even on my bad days, couldn't have done this alone without the help of this site.
  5. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    Gastone my friend you are definitely a blessing in disguise. Appreciate you alot and yes my banking info is all set up! Also correction on my last post....my effective date is January of 2018 so about 6 months of retro i see but kind of feel slighted. I'm going to just have as is...enjoy your weekend brother
  6. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    Words can't express how i appreciate all u guys and ladies of this site!!! Learned so much and is so humbled as I type this message. Checked ebennies this morn and found that I'm finally awarded IU P&T just dont know my effective date as of yet. So as i wait on the BBE what's next as far as applying for those good benefits?.....
  7. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    Thanks so much bro and that pretty much sums it up for me and clarified. Glady appreciated and to others that gave me some good advice while going thru all this process.
  8. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    I would like to add that when i got out the hospital, i never reached back out to them on that appointment missed. It's either TDIU or increase to 100 percent for ptsd is how i actually see it. But it can be worst case scenario which is none of the above. Appreciate your input.
  9. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    I was hospitalized close to 3 weeks and didnt get to make it to that appointment due to a suicide attempt. Currently waiting for ssdi also that i applied for in November of 2016 i believe. I still dont get how i may have screwed up benefits that i know im entitled to???
  10. Bluntly

    TDIU???

    Currently waiting thru the process and have all the required docs needed on my end. They're waiting on my Voc Rehab info that i applied for years ago but never attended anything just applied. VA been waiting for this info or response for about a month now, my question is how long they're going to wait for this before they decide to move on with my claim???
  11. Bluntly

    100 PERCENT or NOT???

    Appreciate your response and that's part of my reason that had me skeptical. "Total Occupational and social impairment" is something they specifically didn't note, so just waiting to find out either way.
  12. Quick back drop I've filed for increase for ptsd Oct. 2017 and had my exam the following month. Awarded 70 percent with retro pay included, right after i filed for IU in Dec. 2017 and they just gave me another ptsd C&P exam(Feb. 17, 2018). 3 months apart from each other for the same exam i thought was kind of strange. But none the less I would like any feed back on whether this new exam remains at 70 percent???(My gut feeling is saying 100)..... SECTION I: ---------- 1. Diagnostic Summary --------------------- Does the Veteran now have or has he/she ever been diagnosed with PTSD? [X] Yes [ ] No ICD Code: F43.10 2. Current Diagnoses -------------------- a. Mental Disorder Diagnosis #1: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder ICD Code: F43.10 Comments, if any: The Veteran reported that he continues to experience trauma disorder symptoms consistent with identified criteria for PTSD including having witnessed/endured a series of traumatic events while serving two deployments to Iraq (2006) and 2008), chronic severe intrusive ideations involving these traumas, avoidance of stimuli associated with traumatic events, negative alterations in cognitions and mood, and significant emotional arousal on a daily basis. He reported that these self-identified index military traumas, including his having been wounded by an IED causing damage to his head, neck, and left leg; witnessing other Marines become wounded, observing the bodies of dead Iraqis, and fearing for his life on a regular basis secondary to frequent attacks on his base and IEDs while on mounted patrol fearing that the vehicles he rode in would be destroyed by an IED and he would be killed in action. These symptoms reportedly cause him significant impairment in most areas of his functioning on an almost daily basis. Current PTSD-related symptoms reported by the veteran include severe anxiety, suspiciousness, chronic middle insomnia, mild memory impairment particularly immediate memory functioning, intrusive recollections of military service based traumas, recurrent nightmares of index military traumas, avoidance of activities, person, and places that resemble aspects of identified traumatic experiences, diminished interest in participation in most daily activities, feeling detached/estranged from family and friends, frequent irritability resulting in occasional displays of verbal aggression, frequent hypervigilance, and chronic difficulty initiating and maintaining certain interpersonal relationships. He reported that the frequency and severity of PTSD-related symptoms continue to increase in frequency and severity and do result in significant impairment in his daily functioning on more days than not at present. Veteran provided self-assessment of severity of current symptoms consistent with PTSD as "getting worse and since I am not working I have time to think about things that I saw in the military" and that it is his subjective opinion that he has experienced a generally mild increase in specific symptoms consistent with diagnosed PTSD during the 3-month interim between the date of the prior Review PTSD C&P examination completed by Dr. XXXX and the date of this Review PTSD examination both of which was completed at the Corporal XXXX VAMC. He reported that the frequency and severity of PTSD-related symptoms have continued to increase in terms of frequency and severity since his military discharge during 2009 and currently cause significant impairment his daily functioning on more days than not. Veteran provided self-assessment of severity of current symptoms consistent with PTSD as "under okay control usually but if something makes me think of something I saw in Iraq or that I am back in Iraq again things gets worse". He noted having experienced continued increases in level of hypervigilance at home and in the community as well as increased frequency of distressing ideations and nightmares of index traumas Veteran is currently awarded 70% disability rating by the VA Regional Office and Insurance Center in light of reported functional impairment caused by chronic PTSD symptoms. b. Medical diagnoses relevant to the understanding or management of the Mental Health Disorder (to include TBI): Service-connected for migraine headaches, flat feet, limited motion of left arm, and limited motion of left ankle. 3. Differentiation of symptoms ------------------------------ a. Does the Veteran have more than one mental disorder diagnosed? [ ] Yes [X] No c. Does the Veteran have a diagnosed traumatic brain injury (TBI)? [ ] Yes [ ] No [X] Not shown in records reviewed Comments, if any: No formal asessment for the presence of symptoms consistent with a diagnosis of traumatic brain injury had been completed based on a review of the Veteran's clinical files. 4. Occupational and social impairment ------------------------------------- a. Which of the following best summarizes the Veteran's level of occupational and social impairment with regards to all mental diagnoses? (Check only one) [X] Occupational and social impairment with reduced reliability and productivity b. For the indicated level of occupational and social impairment, is it possible to differentiate what portion of the occupational and social impairment indicated above is caused by each mental disorder? [ ] Yes [ ] No [X] No other mental disorder has been diagnosed c. If a diagnosis of TBI exists, is it possible to differentiate what portion of the occupational and social impairment indicated above is caused by the TBI? [ ] Yes [ ] No [X] No diagnosis of TBI SECTION II: ----------- Clinical Findings: ------------------ 1. Evidence Review ------------------ Evidence reviewed (check all that apply): [X] VA e-folder (VBMS or Virtual VA) [X] CPRS 2. Recent History (since prior exam) ------------------------------------ a. Relevant Social/Marital/Family history: Veteran served in the US Marine Corps (USMC) and his period of active duty began during June 2005 and ended 4 years later during June 2009. He completed his course of basic training at the Parris Island USMC Base in South Carolina. He the completed infantry school at the North Carolina. His primary military specialty was a 0311 Rifleman. He was deployed twice, Iraq (2006-07) and Iraq (2008). He suffered injuries to his head and neck as the result of an IED blast during initial deployment as a turret gunner. He stated that there was a bright flash as the IED exploded and suffered a laceration othis head and bried loss of consciousness. He denied having been the focus of any significant action of military discipline. He was assessed a Page 11 violation and was charged with failure to supervise a fellow Marine under his command and that other Marine accidentally discharged his weapon which fortunately did not result in personal injury or property damage. He believes that it was that incident that prevented him from achieving the rank of Sergeant. He was awarded an Honorable Discharge at the rank of Corporal (E-4) during June 2009. Veteran reported that he has not experienced any significant changes in his social, marital, or family history during the 3-month interim between the last Review PTSD C&P examination and the date of this examination. Veteran continues to reside with his mother near Xxxx, XX and reports a successful relationship with his mother. He has an emotionally detached relationship with his father currently and that has been the status of their relationship for the past few years. Veteran noted that his relationship has been slightly more amicable during the past year or so. He has close relationships with his siblings (2 sisters and 1brother) and interacts with them one monthly on average. Reported having enjoyed close relationships with all his family members prior to military service and over time the intimacy of those relationships diminished to differing degrees. He noted "I would like to be closer to my brother but he changed after he was in a car accident and is hard to get along to get along with". Veteran reported that he is divorced and had been for 6 years. He reported that the marriage ended primarily because of irreconcilable differences including his displaying anxiety, isolation, and frequent hypervigilance. He has 1 daughter and whom he enjoys a very close, rewarding relationship. He described his relationship with his girlfriend in positive terms and described her as his primary source of social support. Veteran reported that he has been married only once and has only one child. b. Relevant Occupational and Educational history: Veteran reported that he has not experienced any significant change in his occupational or social functioning since the date of the prior Review PTSD C&P examination. He remains unemployed. His last period of employment ended during 2011 when he resigned from his employment as a mechanic at New Jersey Transit in the regional rail division of that organization. He reported having left that position because he did not find the work tasks stimulating and rewarding. As he had during the interview associated with the prior Review PTSD C&P examination during November 2017 he perceived that job as "working was killing me, it w aborning, and I didn't think it was getting me anywhere. I felt like I was wasting my life being there". He reported currently experiencing mild overall impairment in social functioning. He has close, loving relationships with his mother and girlfriend. He reported feeling grateful for the support provided him by his mother and girlfriend. He has a very successful relationship with his daughter. He has few friends and visits with them on "now and then". Reported that he can tolerate most social environments but prefers to be at home when he can. He generally does not attend social occasions hosted by members of his family or his friends and at those occasions he does attend he often remains at those occasions for an hour or two and interacts with select attendees based on how comfortable he feels interacting with them. c. Relevant Mental Health history, to include prescribed medications and family mental health: Veteran reported that he has not participated in any manner of formal treatment of his reported chronic symptoms consistent with diagnosed PTSD since the date of the prior Review PTSD C&P examination 3 months earlier. Reported having last participated in formal mental health disorder treatment during 2014. Reported currently considering beginning outpatient mental health disorder treatment at the Lyons VAMC in NJ. Veteran denied having ever been prescribed psychotropic medication. d. Relevant Legal and Behavioral history: The Veteran denied any history of significant involvement with representatives of the legal or criminal justice system prior to, during, and/or following discharge from military service. e. Relevant Substance abuse history: Veteran denied any history of exhibiting behavior consistent with identified criteria for any substance use disorder listed in the DSM-5 Manual including alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, opiates, methamphetamines, or prescription medication. He reported that he generally imbibes alcohol on an infrequent basis, has never overused cannabis or other common substances of abuse, and never abused prescription medication. Veteran reported that he is currently smoking close to a half of a pack of cigarettes daily and smoking 1 or 2 joints (cannabis) on 2 or 3 days per week. f. Other, if any: No other mental health disorder symptoms reported by the Veteran during the examination interview or noted in his electronic clinical files. 3. PTSD Diagnostic Criteria --------------------------- Please check criteria used for establishing the current PTSD diagnosis. The diagnostic criteria for PTSD, are from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5). The stressful event can be due to combat, personal trauma, other life threatening situations (non-combat related stressors). Do NOT mark symptoms below that are clearly not attributable to the Criterion A stressor/PTSD. Instead, overlapping symptoms clearly attributable to other things should be noted under #6 - "Other symptoms". Criterion A: Exposure to actual or threatened a) death, b) serious injury, c) sexual violence, in one or more of the following ways: [X] Directly experiencing the traumatic event(s) [X] Witnessing, in person, the traumatic event(s) as they occurred to others Criterion B: Presence of (one or more) of the following intrusion symptoms associated with the traumatic event(s), beginning after the traumatic event(s) occurred: [X] Recurrent, involuntary, and intrusive distressing memories of the traumatic event(s). [X] Recurrent distressing dreams in which the content and/or affect of the dream are related to the traumatic event(s). [X] Marked physiological reactions to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event(s). Criterion C: Persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with the traumatic event(s), beginning after the traumatic events(s) occurred, as evidenced by one or both of the following: [X] Avoidance of or efforts to avoid distressing memories, thoughts, or feelings about or closely associated with the traumatic event(s). [X] Avoidance of or efforts to avoid external reminders (people, places, conversations, activities, objects, situations) that arouse distressing memories, thoughts, or feelings about or closely associated with the traumatic event(s). Criterion D: Negative alterations in cognitions and mood associated with the traumatic event(s), beginning or worsening after the traumatic event(s) occurred, as evidenced by two (or more) of the following: [X] Markedly diminished interest or participation in significant activities. [X] Feelings of detachment or estrangement from others. Criterion E: Marked alterations in arousal and reactivity associated with the traumatic event(s), beginning or worsening after the traumatic event(s) occurred, as evidenced by two (or more) of the following: [X] Irritable behavior and angry outbursts (with little or no provocation) typically expressed as verbal or physical aggression toward people or objects. [X] Hypervigilance. [X] Problems with concentration. [X] Sleep disturbance (e.g., difficulty falling or staying asleep or restless sleep). Criterion F: [X] The duration of the symptoms described above in Criteria B, C, and D are more than 1 month. Criterion G: [X] The PTSD symptoms described above cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. Criterion H: [X] The disturbance is not attributable to the physiological effects of a substance (e.g., medication, alcohol) or another medical condition. 4. Symptoms ----------- For VA rating purposes, check all symptoms that actively apply to the Veteran's diagnoses: [X] Anxiety [X] Suspiciousness [X] Chronic sleep impairment [X] Mild memory loss, such as forgetting names, directions or recent events [X] Disturbances of motivation and mood [X] Difficulty in establishing and maintaining effective work and social relationships [X] Difficulty in adapting to stressful circumstances, including work or a worklike setting [X] Intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living, including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene 5. Behavioral observations -------------------------- The results of a brief mental status examination found that the Veteran appeared his stated age, was adequately groomed, and casually attired. He displayed anxious affect and stated his mood in positive terms. Veteran did not display any abnormal or inappropriate behavior during the 60-minute interview. Veteran displayed an open and cooperative attitude towards this examiner during the course of examination session. His speech production was within normal limits in terms of pitch, pace, and volume. Content of his speech indicated reality-based, concise, adaptive ideations and no evidence of formal thought disorder or frank psychotic thinking was observed. His skills in insight and judgment were assessed as intact, his skills in concentration and memory were found to be mildly impaired in areas assessed. Veteran reported that he had experienced suicidal ideations and attempted suicide during 2014 (drank bleach) after experiencing acute psychosocial stressors and was subsequently treated on an inpatient psychiatry unit of a local hospital. He stated that he has not experienced active suicidal ideations since he was discharged from that hospitalization. Denied a history of experiencing homicidal ideations. 6. Other symptoms ----------------- Does the Veteran have any other symptoms attributable to PTSD (and other mental disorders) that are not listed above? [ ] Yes [X] No 7. Competency ------------- Is the Veteran capable of managing his or her financial affairs? [X] Yes [ ] No 8. Remarks, (including any testing results) if any: -----------------------
  13. Thanks for for your advice brother much needed and glady appreciated.
  14. Just got off the phone with the 1800# and was informed that the SOC was sent out on the 17th of January. The neurology dr. didn't put a entry in the system til the 18th, which is why they said i was a no show. So now im curious on how will this pan out now as far as me continuing thru the process up to the board or will i hear in the up coming weeks from the va that the decison has changed and the board may be no longer needed....
  15. Decision: 1. The previous denial of service connection for TBI is confirmed and continued. Reasons and Bases: 1. The DRO has de novo review authority if the appellant elects the process. You elected De novo review, which is a new complete review with no deference given to the decision reviewed. This decision is not based on clear and unmistakable error nor was there new evidence available sufficient to justify a different decision. Instead the evidence of record will be interpreted differently. The NOD received Nov. 10, 2016, states you are in disagreement with the denial of service connection for TBI. There was no additional argument or evidence submitted to help to substantiate your claim. Service treatment records show you were seen in service several time due to an IED blast. VA examinaton dated Dec. 17, 2009, failed to provide a diagnosis for TBI. Progress notes from VAMC East Orange Nov. 23, 2009 to Aug. 18, 2016, reveals a history of TBI. A VA examination was requested to obtain a definitive diagnosis however appointment records from VAMC East Orange shows the Veteran was a no show C&P neurology examine scheduled for January 12, 2018. You did not provide adequate reason for failing to report for the examination, the Department of Veterans Affairs(VA). The VA medical facility did not advise that mail notifying you of a scheduled VA examination has been returned because the Postal Service reported the letter was undeliverable at the address provided. You failed to report for the VA examinations scheduled at VAMC East Orange. Evidence expected from these examinations which might have been material to the outcome of this claim could not be considered. Therefore, service connection for TBI remains denied.
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