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El Train

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El Train last won the day on September 30

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  1. I wouldn't stress over it too much. You already have two favorable C&P's. They probably just want clarification on something. I did 5 C&P's for PTSD and TBI within 6 months. In the end I got 100% PTSD P&T with smc-s. They just wanted to make sure they weren't pyramiding and had the right diagnosis.
  2. No, I think this is good. Too many times an examiner skips questions and categories only to check the box as 'NO'. If they know that isn't going to work in this case, they are more likely to ask the question. If you answer 'YES', that's the box they should mark. Hell, I've walked in with the DBQ in hand. Guess what? The DBQ was asked and answered in full. Got 100% PTSD for that one. My initial TBI DBQ took 2 hours. Very thorough, and very good outcome. In fact this was used against a C&P examiner (an inept one at that) who spent all of 20 minutes and gave me an unfavorable opinion. Hell no. You have a mental rating already. Mental ratings (PTSD in your case) include insomnia/hypersomnia. It would be pyramiding. You can't file a stand alone on hypersomnia. If you think your mental rating should be increased to 100% (pretty high hurdle) due to increased hypersomnia, then go for it. I'd look for a Psyc. Dr. that can write you a DBQ and Nexus that put's you in the 100% range before doing that. Just wait for the outcome of your current claim. Who knows, you might get the 100% PTSD/TBI. PM me if you have any questions. I battled these two claims for over two years.
  3. Hard to say. They will rate TBI based on how bad you did in any one category. In my case I was rated at 70% for TBI alone. I'm not a moderate to severe TBI but that's was based on the one category I did terrible on (memory section I believe). But who knows honestly. My guess, you stay at 70% PTSD/TBI. You're not gonna get any bonus for hypersomnia because it falls under your PTSD/mental rating. Just a guess on my part. I got 100% based on PTSD alone. That was the higher rating of the two combined ratings for PTSD/TBI. I went from 50% ptsd to 100%.
  4. I'm guessing you are rated for TBI? If so, I'm sure you already did neuropsych testing. If not, look up MOCA testing. I did the MOCA test like four times with different C&P examiners. They were trying to separate PTSD with TBI symptoms. In the end I was rated 100% ptsd with tbi symptoms, P&T with smc-s. I'm not sure what can be done about fixing TBI. The damage is done. In my case, I've lived with it for 30+ years.
  5. I didn't even claim hearing loss. Because tinnitus cancels out certain frequency pitches, I think they just gave it to me. My hearing is not bad, but it could get worse. If so, I can get hearing aids at no cost. So 0% is worth something.
  6. Yes, first try. And hearing loss at 0%. The exam lady asked me when or how I thought it happened. My first experience was when some asshat NCO threw a flashbang in my fire hole in bootcamp. Being a 50 cal machine gunner didn't hurt my case either. Don't get cold feet. I think tinnitus is a given. Just let them know how it affects you. In my case I need a fan on in my room when I go to bed to ease the annoyance when it gets quiet, etc.
  7. Got out in 93. Got my tinnitus claim approved in 2017.
  8. My advice (from experience) is find the DBQ, like Broken Soldier said, and know the questions prior to the exam. I've had C&P examiners go off script or not ask the questions from the DBQ at all; then fill in the answer that is favorable to a lower rating. If you have to contest a whack job DBQ, this will set you back years and more C&P exams.
  9. What are we going to do with all this extra dough? . I'm planning my next vacation right now.
  10. This is my case. I suffered nerve damage to spine and neck when my TBI occurred. Got TBI approved, but neck and spine issues denied. Had more than enough evidence. For some reason the VA was set on denying these conditions. Like it was a small solitude of gratifications to deny me on somethings. But hey, I did get max on Fibromyalgia, so in theory I did get rated for pain. If I wasn't 100% P&T with smc-s, I would've appealed and won easily.
  11. I got a diagnosis with the VA for MDD/PTSD. Then I had my C&P who agreed with such diagnosis for 50%. Then I got an outside IME for the same claim putting me in the 70% range and included a diagnosis of TBI along with it. This triggered 5 additional VA C&P's. In the end I got 100% for PTSD/ with TBI, P&T. I can tell you this, one of the VA C&P examiners was not happy with a paid Psyc. Doctors IME. Not amused at all. Her C&P reflected her dismay. So be careful. I had to file a complaint with the VARO to have her C&P dismissed and redone.
  12. I had 5 C&P exams for TBI. I was rated at 50% PTSD. They are trying to differentiate the two overlapping symptoms they share, and separate the ones that don't. Don't be surprised if you get called in for more C&P's. They will send this info. to a head psychologist or two somewhere and let them make the final decision. Then it probably will go back to the rater. Give it time. They do want to get it right and it's very complex. I had one bad C&P exam out of the 5. They actually had some psychologist somewhere side with her (4 out of 5 exams were in my favor). Eventually they were both overruled with overwhelming evidence. I found this in my C-file. Eventually they increased my PTSD to 100% with TBI. They separated my migraines.
  13. TBI is actually pretty straight forward. You need an in service incident that caused unconscious or significant enough to be sent to medical and have a write up. That is in VA terms a TBI. The hard part is having the VA recognize it. It's more difficult if you have PTSD since they have a lot of overlapping symptoms. Don't give up if you have a TBI in you service record. It took a sharp Neuropsychologist (performing Neurofeedback) to get to the root of some of my mental deficiencies. He said I had a TBI along with my PTSD due to a training accident in service that caused me to get knocked the F out. VA brushed it off when I brought it up. I had to get an outside IME from a forensic MD. I then took that report to a Psychologist for further write up (DBQ & Nexus). Only this got the claims ball rolling with the VA. I then got around 5 C&P's for TBI and PTSD. Once my TBI claim was established, it took them a long time to separate PTSD symptoms from TBI. When all was settled I got 100% PTSD and 70% TBI. They combined the two for 100% PTSD with TBI. They will separate some symptoms of TBI if they are present; headaches, vertigo, incontinences, etc. I got 10% for headaches. This got me to 100% P&T with SMC-S. It's not an easy route, and you will get the MOCA test (https://www.mocatest.org/the-moca-test/) when you go for your TBI C&P. I did poorly in this test in several categories. FYI - I had one psychologist state I was an unreliable reporter (a liar in other words). This set me back with the VA wanting to give her report credibility over 7 different Dr's medical opinions. In the end, some head Psychologist (after reading all the C&P's) deemed her the unreliable reporter and not making any sense (found all this info in my C-File). Hopefully you don't get one of these C&P examiners. Good luck and hit me up if you have any questions. I've been there done that.
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