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johnc515

Seaman
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About johnc515

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    E-3 Seaman

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  • Location
    Maryland

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
    70
  • Branch of Service
    Navy
  1. This young man is now in Hospice care, god bless him and his family. Please visit his webpage: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jordanpaganelli
  2. I know this is not the right place to post this, but I thought I share a local story of a veterans dependent suffering from exposure to toxic smoke in Atsugi, Japan. Link to Article: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/military-ve...tory?id=8780874 Please visit his Caring bridge page: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jordanpaganelli When Laurie Paganelli and her son Jordan, 5, moved to the U.S. Naval Air facility at Atsugi, Japan, in 1997, they felt safe -- free from the dangers of the front lines of war. Little did they know, Paganelli says, a silent killer was lurking above the base, putting the health and safety of her family at risk: A giant plume of toxic smoke, drifting from a nearby Japanese incinerator, floated through the homes where U.S. military families lived and the schoolyards where children, including Jordan, played, experts say. In 1990, a U.S. Department of the Navy document reportedly called the cloud a "witch's brew of toxic chemicals." "It smelled, burned your eyes, and sometimes added a greenish glow to the air around us," Pagnelli told the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs today. "We certainly were not aware of the effects it would have on our family years later." On Jan. 11, 2008, doctors diagnosed Jordan, then 16, with a rare and aggressive form of cancer, Alveolar Rhabdo-Myo-Sarcoma (ARMS). Paganelli and several doctors believe Jordan's exposure to the Atsugi incinerator's toxic plume is at least partly to blame for the disease.
  3. Yes, I told the C&P doctor that I was on MTX for both, he even noted that I have seen a "enormous improvement on the skin" since I started taken MTX on my C&P report. The rating letter only mentions this for the arthritis. All of my joints a affected, some are worse such as my wrists and knees. The C&P Doc used the exam work sheets http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Benefits/exams/index.htm for "Shoulder, Elbow, Wrist, Hip, Knee, and Ankle" and "Hand, Thumb, and Fingers". Yes they did X-rays for all joints and used a goniometer to measure the ROM of each joint. He will also ask you alot of questions on how each joint impacts your daily activities, work and how ofen you have flares.
  4. Diablogun, I filed a claim in March 2007 for both Psoriatic Arthritis and psoriasis, I was rated at 60% in May of this year (60% for psoriatic arthritis and 10% for psoriasis). I have filed a NOD because I have taken on Methrotrextate (immunosuppressive drug) every week for the past three years to treat both, if successful my rating for psoriasis should increase to 60%. Also I filed my first claim almost 17 years after my discharge from active duty. Here's what was in my rating letter: Psoriatic Arthritis: We have granted your claim for service connection for your psoriatic arthritis because evidence shows that this disability developed as a result of the inservice psoriasis. We have assigned a 60 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim treatment records from your private physicians show that you have been treated for this condition since early 2006. The records show that you have been treated with methotrexate with significant relief of symptoms. Your disease remains in the active phase. In 2007 you underwent surgery for significant left wrist disability. VA examination shows that both wrists elbows and hands are affected as well as the ankles and feet. You have flares about every month or two lasting for 1 to 2 days, relieved by Celebrex and rest. There is some loss of motion in the elbows, wrists, knees, feet and hips. There is no ankylosis. The hands show boutonniere deformity of all fingers except the thumb and little finger on the left. There is a gap between the finger and proximal transverse crease of hand of the left of 1 to 2 inches. On the right there is no gap. Range of motion of the right thumb is from 0 to 20 degrees and on the left from 0 to 30 degrees. There was no painful motion. The examiner states that this condition is due to the psoriasis incurred during military service. An evaluation of 60 percent is assigned for an active process with weight loss and anemia productive of severe impairment of health, severely incapacitating exacerbations occurring four or more times a year, or a lesser number over prolonged periods. A higher evaluation of 100 percent is not warranted unless there is a totally incapacitating process with constitutional manifestations and active joint involvement. Since there is a likelihood of improvement, the assigned evaluation is not considered permanent and is subject to a future review examination. Psoriasis: We have granted your claim for service connection for psoriasis because service medical records show that this condition began during military service. We have assigned a 10 percent evaluation effective March 21, 2007, the date we received your claim. Your service treatment records show that your psoriasis began on your knees in 1987. Subsequent to service you have continued to receive treatment in the form of topical creams and corticosteroid (Cordran) tape. VA examination shows that currently the psoriasis covers 18 percent of exposed areas and 15 percent of non exposed areas. The face is normal with scaly psoriasiform lesions over the elbows and also the dorsal surface of the hands. The skin on the body is within normal limits. An evaluation of 10 percent is assigned for evidence of at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of the entire body, or at least 5 percent, but less than 20 percent, of exposed areas affected, or; intermittent systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of less than six weeks during the past 12-month period. A higher evaluation of 30 percent is not warranted unless the record shows 20 to 40 percent of the entire body or 20 to 40 percent of exposed areas affected, or; systemic therapy such as corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive drugs required for a total duration of six weeks or more, but not constantly, during the past 12- month period.
  5. I submitted my service connected claim on March 16, 2007 for Psoriatic Arthritis (PSA) , Psoriasis and hearing loss. Today I got approved for 60% (PSA 60%, Psoriasis 10%, hearing 0 %). I want to thank everyone on this site. I am going to look over everything and determine if everything was rated correctly. Thanks again, John
  6. Link to full article: http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/01/mili...unding_080117w/
  7. VA gets $3.7 billion to hire more caseworkers By Kelly Kennedy - Staff writer Posted : Thursday Jan 17, 2008 18:01:29 ESTPresident Bush signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008 today, handing over an extra $3.7 billion to the Department of Veterans Affairs.Bush had to sign the act by Jan. 18, or VA would have lost the promised extra funding, which will be used to hire and train people to process the backlog of more than 600,000 benefits claims, said Dave Autry, spokesman for Disabled American Veterans. Some of the money also will go toward medical research for conditions such as traumatic brain injuries. DAV and nine other veterans service organizations began a letter-writing campaign last week calling on veterans to urge Bush to sign the act in time for VA to get the extra money. "For 5.8 million veterans, this new funding means more qualified doctors and nurses to improve medical services," Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Texas, said in a statement. Edwards chairs the House Appropriations subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs. "For the 400,000 veterans, including combat-wounded vets, who are having to wait too long to have their [health] benefits cases reviewed, this bill means over 1,800 new VA caseworkers to reduce the unacceptable delays in receiving earned benefits," Edwards said. "For veterans with traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, mental health care issues, and lost limbs, this bill means renewed hope to rebuild their lives." Veterans groups also immediately sent out statements praising Bush for signing the bill into law. "I salute the president and Congress for making this additional funding available, and for their untiring support of military families past and present," said George Lisicki, national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. "This budget puts veterans first, which will help ensure VA remains a world-class health care system that is accessible and responsive to those who may require a lifetime of care for their physical and mental injuries." The American Legion said both Democrats and Republicans worked to make sure veterans did not lose benefits. "The American Legion greatly appreciates the congressional leadership — from both sides of the aisle — for working closely with me and my colleagues to provide VA with a budget worthy of the sacrifices of the men and women of the armed forces, veterans, and their families," Marty Conatser, the Legion's national commander, said in a statement. "No veteran should ever be denied an earned benefit for honorable military service." But Autry said funding for VA cannot continue to be handled in such piecemeal fashion. VA needs to be able to plan for the future and can do that only with a stable budget — not with emergency appropriations year after year, he said. "It's a serious concern," he said. "We've had years and years of delayed appropriations. You can't plan ahead this way."
  8. Not sure if this has already been posted Disabled combat vets can get $500, no strings http://www.navytimes.com/news/2007/12/military_woundedmoney_071205w/ By Karen Jowers - Staff writer Posted : Wednesday Dec 5, 2007 13:20:29 ESTThe Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes, in conjunction with the American Legion, is giving gifts of $500 each to 1,000 disabled veterans who served in the Iraq or Afghanistan wars.The Coalition presented a check for $500,000 to the American Legion, and the entire amount will be awarded to veterans, officials said. The Legion will assume all administrative costs. There are no strings attached, and the money does not have to be used for any specific purpose, said American Legion spokeswoman Ramona Joyce. There is no “financial need” requirement — the only requirements are that veterans served in the Iraq or Afghanistan wars, and have a disability rated at 30 percent or more. The money will be given on a first-come, first-served basis. Grants will be available through May, or until the money runs out. “We’d love to go through it before the holidays so they can have extra spending money for presents or maybe for a plane ticket home,” Joyce said. “These grants are just a small token of appreciation for the sacrifices made by so many of America’s men and women in uniform,” said Thomas Palma, general manager of the Coalition, in an announcement about the gifts. “Our Coalition was able to raise a lot of money from caring people but we do not have the distribution network of the American Legion. The Legion is a well-respected organization with a presence in communities across America.” The Legion also distributed checks for the Coalition in 2005. To apply for a grant, veterans should contact their state’s headquarters office. Contact information can be found in the American Legion's state headquarters directory. If further assistance is needed, Joyce said, veterans can call her at (202) 263-2982 or John Raughter at (317) 630-1253.
  9. Here's an update: Called 1800 and the Baltimore office stated my cliam was transfered to the Togus office on Sep 4, due to the backlog in the Baltimore office. Also was told I should here something by the first week of November. We'll see.....
  10. I submiited my claim in mid March and today I called the 1-800 number for status and was told my claim went to the rating board on Aug 16th. How long does the rating process take ? will they make a rating or will they decide if I need a C&P exam for the rating? Thanks, John
  11. I have a few questions but thought I provide background to assist in answering. I submitted my service connected claim on March 16, 2007 for Psoriatic Arthritis (PSA) and Psoriasis. I was active duty in the Navy for ten years (1980-1990), I started having skin problems in 1982 and it intensified during my last three years in the Navy. The Squadron Flight surgeon repeatedly sent me to the Pensacola Navy Hospital Dermatology clinic for evaluation (At least ten visits in my medical record), at first they claimed I had exzema but later changed the diagnoses to Psoriasis and my discharge physical has "Chronic Psoriasis" noted. I was even sent to Balboa Naval Hospital three times when the squadron was in El Centro or the San Diego area; those docs also diagnosed me with Psoriasis. I got out in 1990 and controlled the Psoriasis for a few years until I started seeing my private primary care Doc and after a few times of treating me with various creams he referred me to a Dermatologist who also diagnosed me with Psoriasis. I never filed a claim due to ignorance of my eligibility and I never thought of myself as a disabled vet. In 1996 I started have joint pains and swelling, I was referred to a Rheumatologist and after a few visits I was told I had PSA. I was treated with various anti inflammatory medicines until a last year when I started having servere pain in my left wrist and since than have lost almost all Range of Movement, after numerous miss-diagnosed by my primary care and Neurologist I was sent to see a Orthopedic Doc that looked at my x-rays of my left hand/wrist and told me the wrist was dislocated and my only option is fusion of the wrist. He also x-rays the right wrist and stated it was about 50% degraded in ROM and would I would face the same fate "fusion". (I have seen two other Orthopedics doctors and both concur with the fisrt doc) They said that the PSA was attacking the joints and I needed to see my Rheumatologist to get on some drugs to prevent any further damage. I am now on an immune suppressing drug (methrotrextate) and almost all of my major joints have damage. I didn't use a VSO on my claim but I submitted all of my private medical records and my Navy records in my claim, my Rheumatologist tells me the records state everything and I do not need her to write any statement for a nexus. She told me that Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory condition that affects the joints of children and adults with psoriasis and that most people develop the skin signs of psoriasis first and are later diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis (up to twenty years later in some cases). All major medical type websites that I have researched state the same, and my doc stated any medical background person know they are linked. I looked a few BVA decisions and it seems lin most cases that a veteran that has documented proof of psoriasis, than his claim of PSA is linked. My questions are: 1. Are the copies of the medical records enough? 2. Or should I try to have another Rheumatologist review my records and write a nexus? 3. Should I see a VSO or wait until I get my rating? (Whenever that may be) 4. Will I get rejected because I waited too long even though the chronic psoriasis problems are documented in my medical records? 5. Do the raters have a medical background to know PSA is linked to psoriasis? I thank you all for helping me and all of our veterans John.
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