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Found 22 results

  1. Hey everyone, I recently had to have surgery on my shoulder (that was service connected); after surgery, they told me that my shoulder does have arthritis now. I filed for an increase for my shoulder and filed a secondary arthritis claim. The increase will be re-evaluated at a later date (they felt it was too soon after surgery, as it has only been several months), but they have now changed my claim shoulder claim to state, "right shoulder bicipital tendonitis, right shoulder arthritis/bursitis (previously rated as residuals, right shoulder musculoskeletal strain)" and kept the rating exactly the same. Anyone know how I can fight this? Is it not possible to have it be a secondary claim? I honestly think because I am at 93% and this would put me at 95%, the VA has denied every claim I have brought forth and instead combines every claim with an existing one and has kept my ratings the same. I feel so defeated sometimes....
  2. Can anyone help me find the correct form to request a Copy of my C-File ? I am not comfortable reaching out to my VSO. Short explanation.. after waiting 14 months for my AO prostate cancer claim,I was urged to switch to a different VSO who claimed to have access to my files. He passed me off to another person who is unable or unwilling to help me with anything beyond calling Peggy or my congressman. Calls and e-mails are not answered. I did get the 100% temp and retro. Calling the White House hot line seemed to be what broke the roadblock. I`m just really disappointed in these folks. My previous VSO does not seem inclined to take me back , I don`t blame him at all. I am trying to figure out why the VA keeps denying me for my leg and foot issues. I broke both feet in the service. One in boot camp and one three years later along with a severely sprained ankle. I ended up in medical hold for several months in casts. I was awarded 10% for metarsalgia bilaterally in 2013. I fall a lot due to ankle instability. I walk with a cane. I have been diagnosed with painful and severe osteoarthritis in both feet, knees and ankle and bone spurs by the VA. I have been in bilateral AFO`s since May 2019 prescribed by the VA. I tried to go down stairs without the braces one morning last year and fell breaking my arm and spraining my other wrist. I have had 4 C&P exams for my legs and foot issues. #1 was service connected bilaterally for metarsalgia by the VA. #2 was by the VA and found all of the issues were service connected since 2013. # 3 was with VES and she service connected the same issues. #4 was with the VA and again service connected the same issues. I have submitted claims and higher level reviews and been denied. I do have a supplemental claim from Jan 2020 which shows as currently under review. I would at least like to be able to see what has gone on with my claims and try to figure out a path forward. Sorry for the long post, it`s complicated. Thanks, Bob
  3. Well today, I get a "do over" C/P exam for arthritis of my left knee. I discredited the previous c/p examiners medical report. Ironically, she was the same examiner who did a c/p exam for my right knee and I got a raise on the arthritis. She claimed my left knee was worse than my right knee when we spoke, in the end I was awarded service conection for the left knee arthritis, but the way it was done was weird. The rater combined it with my service connected rating of 2016 under 5260, limited flexion w/torn meniscus It should have been rated separately under 5257 even if it was rated at 0%. which apparently is what they did when combining it to a previous rating and not awarding an increase. I know in the grand sceme of things even a 20% rating will not move the needle for compensation, but I believe the VA should rate veterans for all service connected issues regardless of the rating or if it will increase compensation or not. For me its also about the recognition or acknowledgement that my service to the country caused me great hard to my body. I get anxiety when it comes to C/P exams, I never sleep well the night before, and I get the dry heaves when ever I have one of these exams. I know what to expect, but I still have adverse reactions before the exam. I hope it goes well.
  4. Hello, I'm trying to figure out if there's enough wrong with my rt hip to file a claim. Background: ETS'd '95 L hip: service connected Fall 2021: 40, 10, 0 for osteoarthritis nexus = jump status impacts (will be replaced in June) Lower back: service connected Fall 2021: 20 percent for osteoarthritis/DDD, nexus = jump status impacts Rt knee: service connected Fall '96 10%, increased Fall 2021 to 20, 10 percents osteoarthritis Age = 53 The rt hip has moderate osteoarthritis, some loss of joint space, and spurring. There are some twinges in the buttocks, but noting more than "huh, that ain't right" and I should keep an eye on it. Not reproducible other than it seems to be later in the day/week and in the relatively same spot as the other hip. Groin feels tighter, not so much painful - it's what lead me to the doc for the left hip thinking it was just a chronicaly tight muscle, but this rt hip is nowhere near as severe. Range of motion is good, except unable to rotate internally (does internal rotation count? I see only toe-out and leg crossing). Dr. notes state that I do have pain in the hip. The issue is that I'm bumping up against the age factor, and the hip is 95% OK. It's what the bad hip was like 4 years ago. With that, is there enough to file a claim? File now looking for a 0%? Intent to File and see what happens? Wait until there is consistent pain upon movement and more limited range of motion? Thanks for any input
  5. Greetings, I have been battling with the VA since early 2017 with my disability claim(s). In September 2021, I filed a supplemental claim due to the presumptive condition changes for OEF/OIF/OND and burn pits / particulate matter exposures. They followed through and rated me at 100%, but I then filed for a higher level review because they put effective dates in October (the date of my LHI exam, and not the effective date of change in law or date filed for disability). It is still on-going, and they did a partial grant. I didn't ask for a CUE claim, but they found several CUE claim issues upon that higher level review. So sleep apnea, IBS, hemorrhoids, and etc are being addressed because the VA failed in their duty to assist. They sent my records to an LHI contracted physician (one I saw back in October and she had favorable findings for me then). Presently, I have a combined disability of 100% P&T. And for now (I'm 39), I have gainful employment at a decent salary. Miraculously enough, PTSD and mental health are not among my medical conditions or concerns, even after 20 years in the USAF/ANG. As I go through life, I am finding it more difficult to do tasks independently. My wife cuts my toenails because it is hard for me to reach my toes and use clippers (right hand dominant), and I usually end up cutting too much and/or getting an ingrown nail. I also have one of those as seen on TV gizmos to help put on my socks. So, needless to say, managing my feet is rather difficult for me (and balancing on 1 foot in the shower to scrub them with soap is nearly impossible). The VA has provided me with special shoes and cork inserts to help with the flat feet. I wear collared shirts for work, and it is difficult to do the buttons on the collar as well as the cuffs. I almost always have to have my wife do those for me. I have about 20 medications that the VA has prescribed to me for all of my medical conditions and issues. And my wife is quite persistent about me keeping track of my medications. She bought me one of those medication holders that has a tube with 4 spaces (breakfast, lunch, dinner, bead) for each of 30 days. Just filling those sometimes is an awful pain in the ass with my hands and fingers. I have tried several times to get the VA to consider flare ups in the rating for my cervical spine and knees. Each time it has failed. So now, I have the DBQ's printed and on file with my PCP. The next time I have a flare up, the PCP will see me that day or next day and go through the DBQ's. Then I'll file for an increase, and I may try to file for an earlier effective date as I have not run out of appeals/reviews and I'm still within a year. And my flare ups When my neck gets tweaked, it is nearly impossible to turn my head left or right, my head is pretty much frozen at a slight rightward angle and limited ROM. This usually results in my right shoulder having a flare up as well. When my right shoulder goes wonky, I have severe pain and need to wear an immobilizing brace. And my my lower back will go out with shooting pain from lower back to my feet, unable to walk long distances, and if I pick up my son or dog, I will lose feeling and fall to the floor, so I don't do that when my back is flaring up. And sometimes lifting my younger son or dog will cause this problem. For my knees, these usually go out when I'm deep in the woods walking on uneven terrain, and braces/K-Tape don't seem to prevent the knees from becoming nearly impossible to use and they are in such pain that I can't flex them. It can take me several hours to walk/limp even 3 miles back to the truck when my knees go out. So now, I don't go as far out into the woods if it is an area that has zero cellular service. I also have problems with both wrists, and I have to sleep with braces on to keep them from curling my hands inward at night. So trying to manage a CPAP or even the buttons on my pajamas to take a piss gets very irritating and frustrating at night. I am to the point where I don't drink anything after 7pm so that I don't have to get out of the bed at night to relieve myself in the bathroom. To what degree is loss of use considered for extremities? And to what degree is A&A factored into basic tasks of hygiene and grooming and medication management? At least once per day, my wife does help me with something related to personal hygiene or dressing. If I'm not quite at the point for SMC type benefits, what should I be documenting and keeping track of, and where? Do I schedule more frequent appointments with my doctor? I have a community care provider as the local VA and CBOC's are well over an hour away from me. Also, is SMC paid in addition to, or in lieu of scheduler VA disability payments? I have an upcoming appointment with my doctor to discuss ED related matters, and it appears that several of my medications for service connected issues (arthritis medications, sinus medications) have ED listed as a potential side effect. So, I will be working on an SMC-K package for that. Lastly, I have tried and failed in regards to an earlier effective date for tinnitus, hearing loss, and rhinitis (all rated back in 2017 with an adjustment in 2018 for rhinitis). When I got off of OND/OIF orders in 2011, I went to the VA in 2012 for those issues. I was told that I should go see the VA and they'll take care of you. But nowhere did anyone offer any assistance or direct me towards a formal disability claim. Could it be seen or considered an informal claim (under those old rules) by having sought a VA diagnosis and/or treatment within 1 year of release from Active Duty? Should I try a formal CUE claim on this issue, or just accept defeat? Who knows, maybe 21-432 ARELLANO V. McDONOUGH might help with this if SCOTUS affirms for the petitioner. I do have a digital and electronic copy of my C-File from 2017-2018. I haven't requested an updated copy recently. But the last copy I got was over 1800 pages of documentation. I'm also looking forward to HR 3967, if that passes, the effective date for my sinusitis and migraine headaches could be back to my initial claim in May of 2017. But with that said, if it passes, and I file a supplemental claim for sinusitis, migraine headaches, and sleep apnea (if they grant it) will they review the present rating tables, or the rating tables at the time of the application? The VA published changes to the rating tables for ears, nose, throat, sinus, sleep apnea and etc on Feb 15th in the Federal Register. Thank you, Disability Rating Decision Related To Effective Date chronic strain right thumb (previously evaluated under DC 5224) 10% Service Connected 5/7/2017 shoulder condition, right 20% Service Connected 5/7/2017 radiculopathy of the right upper extremity 20% Service Connected 10/11/2018 radiculopathy of the left upper extremity 20% Service Connected 10/11/2018 internal derangement of the left knee 10% Service Connected 2/24/2020 internal derangement of the right knee 10% Service Connected 2/24/2020 radiculopathy, right lower extremity involving the sciatic nerve 10% Service Connected 10/12/2021 radiculopathy, left lower involving the sciatic nerve 0% Service Connected 11/10/2020 internal derangement of the right ankle (claimed as ankle condition, right) 10% Service Connected 5/7/2017 left ankle strain 10% Service Connected 10/30/2017 bilateral flat feet (pes planus) 30% Service Connected 9/12/2019 lumbosacral strain 10% Service Connected 11/10/2020 cervical strain with degenerative arthritis of the spine (previously rated as musculoskeletal - neck/upper back (cervical spine) (to include neck condition)) 10% Service Connected 10/7/2019 rhinitis with eustachian tube dysfunction 10% Service Connected 10/11/2018 sinusitis 50% Service Connected Gulf War Presumptive 3.320 8/5/2021 tinnitus 10% Service Connected 5/7/2017 bilateral hearing loss 0% Service Connected 5/7/2017 migraine headaches 0% Service Connected Burn Pit Exposure 8/9/2021
  6. I have had two back surgeries (both in service) on L4/L5/S1. Rated 40% Static. I also have PN in Left Leg at 40% static and Right leg 10% Static. I now have arthritis in Hip/Knee and Ankle of Left leg more so than the right. When I injured my back in service there was a lot of damage done on the left side. Was recently diagnosed with arthritis in Hip/Knee/Ankle 7 years after getting out of the service. Has anyone ever claimed SC and was successful getting arthritis in the Hip/Ankle/Knee secondary to Back surgery/DDD? Its really my left side that is really bad. Right leg is much better than left side. My back is still bad, just hasn't completely done me in yet. Thanks in advance
  7. Hello fellow vets, I have a c&p exam next week for right hand pain and arthritis. I am currently SC for: 70% amputation of right index and middle fingers, post mortar explosion. 10% Scars right hand 10% osteo stumps with ankylosis of remaining 2 fingers. 20% right shoulder strain 10% right wrist sprain 10% tinnitus 50% ptsd. I am curious about possible pyramid issues, but would arthritis or carpal tunnel be added to my current hand conditons? Va math will have me at 100% if I get another 30%. Any information would be appreciated!
  8. I had a C&P on the 7th and today I was told I need to go get x-rays done. I'm going to assume this is because the doc returned my exam with a positive arthritis diagnosis. This arthritis seems to usually be rated analogous to rheumatoid and the early stages often don't show in x-rays. Are X-rays mandatory for all arthritis claims of any type? QTC quality department said they are required to request x-rays on arthritis, but I don't know if they are differentiating types. Is there anything I can do to remind them that their manual even says Rheumatoid (and I would assume analogous condition) may not show on X-rays? I am concerned based off some VBA decisions I've read that they jump to conclusions and deny if the X-rays come back normal.
  9. I currently have 20% for arthritis in my upper back. When I use my arms in such a manner like swinging a hammer or holding them up above my head for long periods, it causes pain in my back. Do I have to have pain in my arm or joints in my arm to have a claim? Can I get this service-connected as a secondary disability?
  10. Hello Everyone, I have a question about arthritis rating table below. Is the rating applied for "EACH" major joint (or group of minor joints) affected or is it just one rating for the existence of the arthritis? Example: If rated in both left and right knees as well as left and right ankles ... would that be one rating of 20% for all of them or would it be 20% for each major joint? Thank you in advance for spreading some light on this. 5003 Arthritis, degenerative (hypertrophic or osteoarthritis): Degenerative arthritis established by X-ray findings will be rated on the basis of limitation of motion under the appropriate diagnostic codes for the specific joint or joints involved (DC 5200 etc.). When however, the limitation of motion of the specific joint or joints involved is noncompensable under the appropriate diagnostic codes, a rating of 10 pct is for application for each such major joint or group of minor joints affected by limitation of motion, to be combined, not added under diagnostic code 5003. Limitation of motion must be objectively confirmed by findings such as swelling, muscle spasm, or satisfactory evidence of painful motion. In the absence of limitation of motion, rate as below: With X-ray evidence of involvement of 2 or more major joints or 2 or more minor joint groups, with occasional incapacitating exacerbations 20 With X-ray evidence of involvement of 2 or more major joints or 2 or more minor joint groups 10 Note (1): The 20 pct and 10 pct ratings based on X-ray findings, above, will not be combined with ratings based on limitation of motion. Note (2): The 20 pct and 10 pct ratings based on X-ray findings, above, will not be utilized in rating conditions listed under diagnostic codes 5013 to 5024, inclusive.
  11. Hello all, I'm currently rated for osteoarthritis and djd with loss of ROM in multiple joints from spine to feet. My pain management Dr. recommend to be tested for RHUMATOID arthritis/ Psoriatic arthrits. Blood work neg for RA, PSA still possible. X-rays show positive for arthritis. I've developed psoriasis after service so I was never treated while active for it. Is it possible to have been misdiagnosed all these years? If PSA is confirmed would it be wise to file for it, and would it be considered pyramiding? Could it be considered new diagnosis? I've read that they don't base RA/PSA on ROM just immune criteria. All this new information has my head spinning. Any input would be greatfull.
  12. My question is about rheumatoid arthritis spreading to new joints and how the VA views these new claims. I am going to add new claims for left hand, right wrist, both knees, both ankles, and right shoulder. Ask for an increase for the right foot as there is painful motion. I am service connected for psoriatic arthritis(VA rates this as rheumatoid arthritis according to explanation by them in my claim) of the right hand 10%, right foot 0%, left wrist 10%, left foot 10%. Assuming that these new claims are for rheumatoid arthritis individual joints, does the VA usually assume the progression of the disease to other joints. I am already service connected for psoriatic arthritis(rheumatoid for VA rating) in the joints listed above ? My understanding is that degenerative arthritis which I am not referring to needs in service treatment or in service injury for specific joints that cause current disability. I am not finding much information on rheumatoid arthritis being service connected and spreading to new joints. I might not be looking in the right places. The new joints I am claiming do not have in service treatment records, but is rheumatoid arthritis treated differently if I already have service connected rheumatoid arthritis in other joints currently?
  13. I have been using "Voltaren GEL" for about a month. Its a presctiption NSAID that you rub onto sore joints especially for arthritis and other joint pain. Its awesome. I got it at the VA, after my wife's doc recommended it for her and gave her physician samples of a similar brand. IT RELEIVES THE PAIN INSTANTLY. No waiting an hour or so for pills to work. You rub it on. I had to ask my VA PCP for it, and he gladly wrote me a prescription for it. Its better than Vicodin as it works faster. I highly recommend it, I realize not everyone can take it (if you have heart trouble, etc.) I suggest you ask your doc, I love the pain relief.
  14. I've been wanting to put a claim in for arthritis that I've developed after my discharge, however, I was told I should wait after my appeal was completed or it could hold up the process. I have two remanded items left which my RO estimates will be completed in 6-9 months. What I'm wondering is, is it too late to file? I EASd back in September 2012. In my medical records from service I had complaints of knee and ankle instability. After a couple of years I started having a lot of pain in my feet, ankles, and knees. When I went to the doctor they said I had degenerative arthritis in my feet and ankles, and the beginning signs of arthritis in my knees. I've already been service connected for arthritis in my left shoulder and right thumb. I'm currently 28 years old. I've also started having the same pain in my right shoulder as my left. Is it too late to put in a claim for these? Would they even relate it to military service since I've been out for 5 years? I feel like I'd be too young to develop arthritis based on my age. Could I use the instability from my time in service as a link to my current arthritis? For my right shoulder, could I claim it secondary to my left shoulder (overuse due to compensating for left shoulder pain and weakness)? I realize it would be based on current medical evidence, medical evidence in service, and and nexus relating it, just wondering of likelihood of being approved.
  15. Rated 10% (SC) painful joints/Arthritis. When filed for increase unaware, but last week! diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Explains why my pain is severe. I need information. A condition caused or worsened by a SC condition is rated secondary to the SC condition. I don't know how to address acquiring after service a condition that aggravates existing SC condition. Am I stuck at 10% rating for painful joints or can I get compensation for the disabling pain either for effects on arthritis or as a secondary diagnosis? BTW I have SC conditions (IBD,PTSD,Migraines) which are common with fibromyalgia,... still getting Fibromyalgia SC is unlikely. Fibromyalgia alone is painful, but co-existing with arthritis is unbearable. Is there precedent to allow increase above 10% or allow secondary diagnosis? ANY SUGGESTIONS!!!!! I'm in constant pain. My claim is in reviewing evidence and will be decided soon. Any good advice is appreciated. Thank You
  16. Im curios if anyone has gotten comp for arthritis secondary to a knee injury? Here is the deal: Im at 100 percent and am seeking the "easiest" route to SMC S. I have at least 4 possibilities to SMC S. 1. TDIU..since I applied in 2002, and have not been employed (SGE) since then. My TDIU claim was dismissed by RO as moot: the BVA appeal said it was "not moot" and remanded it to RO for an SOC. This is crazy and assumes the RO is going to deny the remand..predjudicing the RO. (The VA has a duty to maximize the benefits due to Veteran). However, when the RO "implemented" the BVA remand they "forgot" to even mention TDIU, even tho it was required by the Board. I appealed the RO decision but am interested in getting "on with my life" and not spend my last days fighting VA!!! 2. Arthritis of the KNEE(s). I have it in both knees, as it often happens with one knee injury, the other flares up also. I had a fracture in military and have developed arthritis in BOTH knees and its documented by xrays and several docs and physical therapists. My question is if I did get arthritis for the knees, it wont even qualify me for SMC-S unless its "About" 50%. I have 100% for depression 10 percent hearing loss 10 percent tinnitus. Not sure if SMC is added or combined (above 100 percent) but I need "at least" 40 percent for arthritis to make to to SMC S. Maybe somebody has gotten SC for arthritis of the knees and can share their percentage and symptoms. One doc says I have a "leg length discrepency". I dont have a firm "nexus" for arthritis but I may be able to persue it. Its somewhat compelling when you have a fracture that broken bone often gets arthritis. 3. Sleep apnea. Im not SC for OSA but definately have sleep apnea. Since they did not even know what OSA is in the 1970's this is a tough one to get SC'd on. No, I do not have a docs nexus linking OSA to service. Possibly or even probably my nexus has to be something secondary to depression..after all they make me take pills, at least some of which has led to weight gain (and sleep apnea). My doc did say if I could lose 50 pounds it would not guarntee getting rid of sleep apnea but it would likely reduce it. 4. Crazily, Im already "housebound" but its SMP housebound. The VA says Im housebound..but that its not service connected HOUSEBOUND. However, VA did not say in reasons and bases how I can be housebound NOT due to sc conditions. Thanks for the help. Id like to know your opinions on the best or easiest route to househound (SMC S). On ASKnod, he explained to be "housebound in fact" you dont need to NEVER leave the house..but never leave the house "for work". The VA was denying vets housebound if they showed up for a housebound c and p, reasoning if they made it to the docs for c and p, then they were not housebound. Buie struck that one down. Typical VA.
  17. I have an L5-S1 disc bulge with facet arthritis, I am currently rated 10% for "middle back strain", but I did an appeal because they didn't include the bulged disc in their findings. so, I am essentially asking them include the "buldged disc" to my rating, i included that evidence in my original claim when they gave me my "middle back strain" rating, but they just overlooked the lower back L5-S1 bulge and only gave me the "middle back strain" determination. I did an appeal and asked for a C&P exam this time, they didn't do one before. so, i have been reading the C&P spine exam paperwork and i have some questions on the ROM "exercises", for example...what exactly is an extension? does anyone have a pictoral guide or video to describe the things they will have me doing? maybe a picture of what a normal ROM is for a given "exercise"? also, I don't have any cervical spine issues but for the Thorocolumbar rom test I notice the individual degrees for each exercise...and they will be combined to a maximum of 240. does anyone know what the minimum combined number for (thorocolumbar rom) to be considered disabled? be it...10%, 20%, etc? Let me know if am being unclear in any of this.... I just want to be really informed before tomorrow.
  18. I do not know if I have any right to a CUE, or any sort of review, so forgive me if I have posted in the wrong forum in error. I will give a history and wait for comment: April 1992 - Enlist. May 1993 - x-ray for ankle spain. No damage to the foot or ankle is observed. Tendon calcification is noted. 23 Jan 1994 - In Service accident: Dislocation of ankle (set) Broken tibia (plate and screws) Crushed/fractured 4th and 5th metatarsal (5th was open facture) Closed head injury (staples, stitches and scars) Scars 18 Feb 1994 - Hospital discharge paperwork only mentions the above. While in-service recovering I had multiple operations, casting, x-rays, and Physical Therapy. 31 Mar 1994 - X-Ray states that a healed fracture of the calcaneus (heal bone) is noted. This is only one of two times it is mentioned in my medical records. 17 May 1994 - Xray mentions healed calcaneus. Missed or closed reductoin that is never mentioned in medial records. Aug 1995 - Discharge and rated 10% disabled for arthritis. This was verified today with my VA DSO. 2013 - Spent 18 years thinking that getting 10% for my ankle was good. Then looked through medical paperwork in preparation of seeing a private doctor to consult on the possible realignment of Stevens Type III calcaneus malunion and realised that my deformed ankle was never taken into account in my rating. Nor was my range of motion in 4 angles (poor), Poor weight bearing position, malunion, and other moderate foot injuries. I will try to describe the state of my heel and ankle. The rest of the damage is as imagined: My heel is at an angle all the time. Trying to use my leg muscles I can put my heel in a straight up an down possition, but this is as far as I can go, and it is not the relaxed possition. Doing this also raises my toes into an unnatural possition. the heel and the pad are off-set from center by about 10 degrees. This causes me to partially stand on the side of my heel. The joint and heel are very wide and make wearing some shoes difficult. There is a scar on the bottom of my heel that can be painful after a long time on my feet. I know we are not medical experts, but if the radiologists stated I had a broken calcaneus/heel why would the doctor not mention it? Could this be a reason to open a claim? lastly, if I get private work done would that destroy my chances of getting a higher percentage? finally Is chasing this even worth it?
  19. 1. Diagnosis: Does the Veteran now have or has he/she ever been diagnosed with a thoracolumbar spine (back) condition? YES If yes, provide only diagnoses that pertain to thoracolumbar spine (back) conditions: Diagnosis #1: Low back strain and degenerative disc disease Date of Diagnosis: UNKNOWN 2. Medical history: The veteran stated during his military service in the Army, he was playing football when he injured his head, low back, and his left shoulder. He was tackled and he was knocked out for about 30 min. He was transferred to the hospital. He said that his first memory was woke up in the field. He had x-rays on his back and his shoulder. Since then, he has been complaining recurrent low back pain due to suspected pinch nerve and osteoarthritis. He has been seen or ER at VAMC because of his back. He also recalled that he had Physical Therapy during his Army time. He also recalled that during his Desert Storm, he was hit in the head but had no LOC. He denies any other accident or trauma, he still having cognitive problem and memory issues. From his left shoulder, he is having pop all the time, some weakness and LOM. He is having a constant 4/10 on pain intensity but its depend on activities. Sometimes is a zero but sometimes is an 8/10. From his lower back, he is having a constant back pain about 4/10 on pain intensity. His worse pain is a 10/10 on pain intensity once a year. He is on Naproxen with fair response. 4. Initial range of motion (ROM) measurement: a. forward flexion ends: 60 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: 40 b. Select where extension ends: 15 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: 10 c. Select here right lateral flexion ends: 20 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: 20 d. Select where left lateral flexion ends: 20 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: 20 e. Select where right lateral rotation ends: 20 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: 20 f. Select where left lateral rotation ends: 30 Select where objective evidence of painful motion begins: <X) No objective evidence of painful motion 5. ROM measurment after repetitive use testing a. Is the Veteran able to perform repetitive-use testing with 3 repetitions? YES b. post test forward flexion ends: 60 c. post test extension ends: 15 d. post test right lateral flexion ends: 20 e. post test left lateral flexion ends: 20 f. post test right latereral rotation ends: 20 g. post test left lateral rotation ends: 30 or greater 6. Functional loss and additional limitation in ROM b. Does the Veteran h ave any funtional loss and/or functional impairment of the thoracolumbar spine (back)? YES c. If the Veteran has a functional loss, functional impairment and/or additional limitations of ROM of the thoracolumbar spine (back) after repetitive use, indicate the contributing factors of disability below: <X> Pain on movement 7. Pain and muscle spasm (pain on palpation, effect of muscle spasm on gait) a. Does the Veteran have localized tenderness or pain to palpation for joints and/or soft tissue of teh thoracolumbar spine (back)? YES If yes, describe: thoracolumbar paraspinal muscle b. Does the Veteran have guarding ofr muscle spasm of the thoracolumbar spine (back)? YES If yes, is it severe enough to result in: <X> Guarding and/or muscle spasm is present, but do not result in abnormal gait or spinal countour 10. Sensory exam Foot/toes (L5): Right and left Decreased 14. Intervertebral disc syndrome (IVDS) and incapacitating episodes a. Does the Veteran have IVDS of the thoracolumbar spine? YES b. If yes, has the veteran had any incapacitating episodes over past 12 months? NO 18. Diagnostic testing a. Have imaging studies of the thoracolumbar spine been performed and are the results available? YES If yes, is arthritis documented? YES c. Are there any other significant diagnostic test findings and/or results? YES If yes, provide type of test or procedure, date and results (brief summary): Report status: Verified Date Reported: Nov 10, 2011 Date Verified: Nov10, 2011 Impression: Frontal and Lateral Lumbar Spine 11/9/2011: No comparison lumbar spine. Preserved lumbar column alignment, vertebral body heights and disc spaces. Multilevel anterior osteophytic lipping. Normal sacroiliac joints. Posterior fusion anomaly at lumbosacral transition. Nonobstructive bowel gas pattern. Indeterminate renal outlines. No opacities to suggest biliary, pancreatic, or urinary tract stones. 19. Function Impact YES, He is on SSDI due to Mental and Physical condition. 20. Remarks, if any: C-File was reviewed. No evidence of back injury during service.
  20. So in my remand, the VLJ wanted a more recent C&P for arthritis. He also stated that this should be during a flare-up of the condition to see the full extent of the claimed disability. My question for my brothers and sisters out there is this: has anyone STOPPED taking medication for a condition so the C&P shows the extent of the condition? If not or if so, why?
  21. Greetings to All, In 2010 I injured my lower back from lifting. I am currently SC 30%, 10% of that is for lumbar degenerative disc disease with intermittent radicular symptoms, I was awarded the service connection about 2 yrs ago. In the past 4 months my leg/nerve pain has gotten significantly worse. It has started bothering in more and more places, not just my legs. The location of the bulging disc has become more painful, with sensitivity in other areas of the spine. With all that said, I got a civilian referral for a Spine Dr. During the visit he looked at my new MRI and said that I had arthritis in my spine, "beefy joints"-his words. He said the combination of the bulging disc and the arthritis was causing all my issues. It explains a lot about how I feel, in the morning, etc.. I am only 33 years old and still work full time, but I can easily imagine how my medical issues could put me out. I am trying to figure out if I should file and what to file for, it looks like there are a ton of codes out there associated with the back? Arthritis? DDD? Hip issues? Depression? They could all be applicable in my mind. The only nexus would be from the original claim or IMO if needed. I know I need to have me ducks in a row before starting this process again. Not sure if it should be filed separately from the initial injury or as a condition that has gotten worse? Any input would be greatly appreciated. -moose-
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