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Decision On Claim Arrived Yesterday


Phred
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I have about a hundred questions as I'm reading through this paper work but I'd like to start with what does this mean: "The VA examiner stated that he could not assess the degree of leg pain related to your service connected injuries without meter speculation."

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This won't help, but I wonder if this was a transcription error, maybe the correct word was "mere," not "meter."

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This won't help, but I wonder if this was a transcription error, maybe the correct word was "mere," not "meter."

Agree, there is only one reference to "meter speculation" on Google and it pertains to poetry.

Ron

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That makes so much more sense, thank you. I believe you are right, “mere speculation.”

I’ll try to give a quick background. My wife asked for a reevaluation of:

  • Left ankle, shin and knee stress injury residuals
  • Right ankle, shin and knee stress injury residuals

Each had been previously assigned a 10 percent rating, so she was getting 20 percent for her legs and 10 percent for a wrist but she didn’t include the wrist in this request for re-evaluation.

She got no increase. I blame our approach. I do so for a number of reasons. I’m not ready to give up and neither is she. I am going to help her with her appeal but I don’t want to screw it up again.

I think we screwed up from the beginning by giving the VA an easy way to claim that her current condition is not service-connected. What I mean is… she got out in 1999, had been getting 30 percent, fell and hurt her legs in 2007, when she filled out the Statement in Support of Claim she stated that she fell and hurt her legs but that the injuries were made more extensive due to the pre-existing service-connected condition or something to that effect. At least that’s what I think she stated. (Note to Self: I need to get a copy of the Statement of Claim) I’m not sure if the Statement tried to claim that the fall was caused by the pre-existing service connected condition. I don’t know if that’s a direction we should have taken it or not. The bottom line is that they denied her by saying that “No link of the accident (meaning the fall) or residuals to the stress fractures in service was provided.” Previously in that paragraph they state that, “The private medical records show your accident when you fell on ice, while moderately impaired, in May of 2007, resulting in surgery.” They did get medical records directly from the hospital and surgeon, we didn’t see a copy. (Note to self: That was a big mistake.) I need to get a copy of those records as we work on the appeal because I want to see how they determined that she was moderately impaired, I don’t remember a breathalyzer test having been administered, maybe they performed some blood test, either way I want to see what reference there is to this moderately impaired business. I’m also wondering why they would bother to put that in their findings. Is that statement an attempt to disprove her service connected pre existing condition had nothing to do with the fall or severity of the injuries? Also, look at the date, May, we don’t live at the North Pole, what ice are they talking about? Nobody ever said anything about falling on ice, there was no ice. That’s another reason I need to see these records, I want to see if the VA is just blatantly making shit up or if someone at the hospital got their facts wrong.

I'm thinking we shouldn't have mentioned the fall at all and just asked for a reevaluation based on the state of her legs currently.

Anyway, I appreciate any comments or suggestions; I’ll type up plenty more after I cool off a bit. Certain aspects of this has really got my blood a boilin'.

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That makes so much more sense, thank you. I believe you are right, “mere speculation.”

I’ll try to give a quick background. My wife asked for a reevaluation of:

  • Left ankle, shin and knee stress injury residuals
  • Right ankle, shin and knee stress injury residuals

Each had been previously assigned a 10 percent rating, so she was getting 20 percent for her legs and 10 percent for a wrist but she didn’t include the wrist in this request for re-evaluation.

She got no increase. I blame our approach. I do so for a number of reasons. I’m not ready to give up and neither is she. I am going to help her with her appeal but I don’t want to screw it up again.

I think we screwed up from the beginning by giving the VA an easy way to claim that her current condition is not service-connected. What I mean is… she got out in 1999, had been getting 30 percent, fell and hurt her legs in 2007, when she filled out the Statement in Support of Claim she stated that she fell and hurt her legs but that the injuries were made more extensive due to the pre-existing service-connected condition or something to that effect. At least that’s what I think she stated. (Note to Self: I need to get a copy of the Statement of Claim) I’m not sure if the Statement tried to claim that the fall was caused by the pre-existing service connected condition. I don’t know if that’s a direction we should have taken it or not. The bottom line is that they denied her by saying that “No link of the accident (meaning the fall) or residuals to the stress fractures in service was provided.” Previously in that paragraph they state that, “The private medical records show your accident when you fell on ice, while moderately impaired, in May of 2007, resulting in surgery.” They did get medical records directly from the hospital and surgeon, we didn’t see a copy. (Note to self: That was a big mistake.) I need to get a copy of those records as we work on the appeal because I want to see how they determined that she was moderately impaired, I don’t remember a breathalyzer test having been administered, maybe they performed some blood test, either way I want to see what reference there is to this moderately impaired business. I’m also wondering why they would bother to put that in their findings. Is that statement an attempt to disprove her service connected pre existing condition had nothing to do with the fall or severity of the injuries? Also, look at the date, May, we don’t live at the North Pole, what ice are they talking about? Nobody ever said anything about falling on ice, there was no ice. That’s another reason I need to see these records, I want to see if the VA is just blatantly making shit up or if someone at the hospital got their facts wrong.

I'm thinking we shouldn't have mentioned the fall at all and just asked for a reevaluation based on the state of her legs currently.

Anyway, I appreciate any comments or suggestions; I’ll type up plenty more after I cool off a bit. Certain aspects of this has really got my blood a boilin'.

I also would also question their term "whie moderately impaired" what are they talking about. Where did that come from? There is where I think you will find the reason for the denial.

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Also…

I need to figure out what exactly she was originally rated 10 percent for for each leg because I’ve seen her condition referred to on various VA documents as Left ankle, shin and knee injury residuals, I’ve seen it referred to as lower leg stress injuries and I’ve seen it referred to as stress fractures. If she had for example, Left ankle, shin and knee injury residuals then couldn’t it be argued that that should be getting 10 percent for the left ankle, 10 percent for the left shin and 10 percent for the left knee totaling 30 percent, not 10 percent. How does one go about getting the official document that states exactly medically what the VA is paying her for?

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So if by "The VA examiner stated that he could not assess the degree of leg pain related to your service connected injuries without meter speculation," they meant that the doctor’s position was that he can’t determine the degree of leg pain and any attempt to try would be mere speculation on his part. I’m looking at the schedule of ratings and notice that the following is mentioned, “Limitation of motion must be objectively confirmed by findings such as swelling, muscle spasm, or satisfactory evidence of painful motion." So how does one go about providing objectively confirmed evidence of painful motion if the doctor’s position is that any attempt to do so is mere speculation!

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