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Why'd I Wait? Help With Dcs/words/expectations



Newbie to forum, but appreciate all the posts and info!

I've never claimed VA before now (dumb!), but let's pretend that the injuries and SC nexus are easy to show, and the only question is what DCs to claim for. Previous posts were very helpful, so I've taken a stab that I think covers it and what the ratings might be, and hopefully isn't pyramiding. I'm sure getting these approved won't be easy as just creating a list, but did want to get started in the right direction.

Would sure be grateful for anything that jumps out to you as a wrong direction to go, or surprises to expect. Thanks for the help!

  • 5055______30%:__Right knee total replacement (prosthesis)
  • 5055______30%:__Left knee total replacement (prosthesis)
  • 5055_____100%:__100 pct rating for 1 year following implantation of prosthesis
  • §4.26____+10%:__Bilateral factor for left and right knee TKRs
  • 5243______20%:__Thorocolumbar intervertebral disc syndrome (IVDS) with abnormal spinal contour (scoliosis); also stenosis; spondylolisthesis; DDD
  • 5243-8250_10%:__Incomplete paralysis of the sciatic nerve
  • 5243______10%:__Cervical intervertebral disc syndrome (IVDS) with spondylolisthesis; DDD; with combined range of motion greater than 170 but not greater than 335 degrees
  • 5203______10%:__Right clavicle/scapula impairment (malunion of acromioclavicular joint)

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If you are not employed and any of these conditions render you unemployable-have you formally applied for TDIU yet?

TDIU is paid at the 100% rate- Total Disability Due to Individual Unemployability

I would imagine the IVDS would impact on the knee replacements or vice versa-but hard to say-

It is a good idea to try to determine both DCs and proper ratings based on your evidence- but it all depends on how the VA codes and rates your disabilities when you get a C & P exam.

Also claims at the BVA wqeb site that are similiar might give more ideas on how the VA will rate this.

You seem sure that your nexus can be established so that is a big bridge you have crossed.

Do you have copy of your actual SMRs and discharge certificate that show the inservice nexus?

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Thanks for the quick reply, Berta. See you're in the beautiful hills of NY (I had tough duty for 3 years just north of Albany), but now am near the beautiful hills of Colorado Springs.

Yeah, Dad (WWII vet) told me to copy all my SMRs just before retirement, and they show over those 24 years the osteoarthritis progressing and the first two knee surgeries and the back issues starting. I also see some VA claim decisions that say that's almost to be expected from parachuting duties. I'm also getting the post-retirement medical rex of continuity and surgeries from local military and civilian GP and ortho. I was surprised to recently see much more severe degeneration, and the TKRs were what finally made a doctor (service vet) ask why I hadn't gone to VA yet.

I thought TDIU would be unlikely -- post-retirement work is desk work which I'm still handling at 90%-100% of full-time, so pain/limitations don't seem to be disabling me from employment.

About the VA exam -- I imagine it would be hard for that doc to cover that many bases in so short a time, but I'll at least try to be prepared and know what I'd like them to see.

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