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I did not see my most recent decision denial letter in the mail. Anyone know where I can get ALL of my past denial letters and their reasonings for denying me? Also, is there a way to see all of my service connections and their wording on why they were able to service connect me? One reason I also want to know the reasons I am service connected to things is because I was recently approved for Hypertension. They denied me Sleep apnea in the past because of my weight. But I believe in this recent decision, I leveraged the fact that I gained weight due to my mental health service connection. And I was able to use that as a nexus for hypertension. I am now wanting to point toward that service connection approval and use it as an "It was recognized in my Hypertension claim that I gained weight from Anxiety/depression service connection. I am wanting to transfer that recognition to my reasoning for my service connection to sleep apnea. Since the VA had prior listed the reason that I have sleep apnea is due to my weight." Anyone know where I can get past approval and denial letters with details of connections?
While this isn't particularly new news, there is a large story in USA Today 07/23/2014 page 6B by reporter Nanci Helmich mentioning solid medical research that links sleep deprivation to weight gain: "Losing sleep doesn't just leave you tired--- it can make you fat." This is due to how sleep deprivation affects certain hormones namely increasing ghrelin and decreasing leptin. Therefore, the connection of sleep apnea causing weight gain and even diabetes should be a no brainer and service-connecting weight gain/obesity or perhaps diabetes and hypertension as secondary conditions to a sleep disorder could be claimed. I realize that this is sort of a what came first issue: the chicken or the egg? However, if you started out thin/normal weight and then developed sleep apnea which led to weight gain, it would seem that there may be the basis for a well-grounded claim in the absence of other weight causing factors. Remember, not all sleep apnea is OSA / obstructive...there are also central or complex/mixed types as well. More info on this issue at: http://health.howstuffworks.com/mental-health/sleep/disorders/sleep-apnea.htm Also see slide #19: http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&ved=0CCMQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fweb.stanford.edu%2F~davesv%2FWeight%2520%26%2520OSA.ppt&ei=-krQU9ydIs6iyATHiIHwCg&usg=AFQjCNFnDNcnaMb34bJh1yZoccIA9kQB7Q&bvm=bv.71667212,d.aWw