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danang_1969

Tinnitus And Hearing Loss Claim

Question

Getting things ready to reopen a new tinnitus and hearing loss claim. Need info.

Here is what I have now.

1.Claimant or Veterna's statement of hours of extreme noise with no ear protection provided.

2.Two buddy letters stating I was exposed as to extreme noise numerous hours with no ear protection.

3.Private audiologist hearing test chart and results saying hearing loss from acoustical trauma.

4.Example chart of high frequency loss test chart that matches my test chart almost exactly.

4.NEW EVIDENT: VA Ear Nose and Throat Specialist records saying hearing loss and tinnitus from acoustical trauma that happened many many years ago. Need hearing aids or surgery to correct both. Scheduled for hearing aid setup.

Been denied 3 times on this condition. Two different C&P's exams from same VA doctor saying hearing loss and tinnitus is from old age and SSOC said no connection to military service.

What else do I need?

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Hearing aids and most surgeries will NOT correct Tinnitus.

For Tinnitus it has to be Subjective Tinnitus (only heard by you)

and it must state RECURRENT.

Hope this helps a vet.

carlie

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you can also show how your mos was subject to long exposure to loud noise.engines,firearms,explosions,grinding.

when you have the exam they will try to match the ring.real tinitus can not be matched and it's usually worse in one ear.

as for hearing,you have to show the same,that hearing was good prior to service and got worse in.it doesn't pay a fartin thing but then if you get 0% sc,you can get hearing aids.

but i thought if you were sc for any condition ,you could get free hearing aids anyways..someone correct me if i'm wrong.

good luck with your claim.

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you can also show how your mos was subject to long exposure to loud noise.engines,firearms,explosions,grinding.

when you have the exam they will try to match the ring.real tinitus can not be matched and it's usually worse in one ear.

as for hearing,you have to show the same,that hearing was good prior to service and got worse in.it doesn't pay a fartin thing but then if you get 0% sc,you can get hearing aids.

but i thought if you were sc for any condition ,you could get free hearing aids anyways..someone correct me if i'm wrong.

good luck with your claim.

That is what I understand, if you are SC'd for anything you can get hearing aids. I did submit my MOS's and extreme noise information with each in great detail in the intial claims. I had multiple MOS's and they all had extreme noises, some worse than others. You are right on about tinnitis being in worse in one ear. I hear it big time in my right ear, my bad or worst ear. The ENT said the hearing aid would help but not silence it or cure it. Thanks for all the advice. Thanks to you as well Carol and it definetely is reoccurent. I'll make sure I get that in when I reopen because you have to draw then a picture and color all inside the lines. I was only 17 years old upon entry have records of perfect hearing.

danang_69

Edited by danang_1969

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I have been approved for SC to hearing loss. Of course, the regional office denied it. The BVA, however, approved it upon appeal. When I appealed, I did my homework. I showed that San Diego California NTSC was right at the base of the airport, where planes land and take off constantly. To do this, I used google maps, and printed a map of the SSC and noted its close proximity to the end of the runway and my barracks.

Next, I pointed out that my audiologist stated, "the most likely cause of the Veterans hearing loss was military service".

If your VA audiologist didnt/wont do that, then get a more "Veteran friendly" audiologist who will. Explain to the audioligist that you were exposed to excessive noise in the military, and were not offered hearing protection if that is the case. You can also mention that you do not work in a particulary noisy environment (if that is the case) and that you dont listen to loud music. Be 100% truthfull, as I was, and offer "evidence" to your audiologist. Remember, that the average hearing impaired person simply lives with their hearing loss for about ten years before doing anything about it, such as getting hearing aids. Your hearing loss will be measured by the audiologist, and will offer indusputable proof of hearing loss. Service connection will be the issue..that is, if you have documented hearing loss as measured by your audiologist. The Regional Office regurarly fails to consider ALL evidence(as required by regulations)..that is, in my case the evidence that the audiologist opined that my hearing loss was most likely due to military service. The regulations state that a layperson, such as a rating service rep can NOT overide this audiology opinion WITHOUT compelling medical evidence to the contrary. That is, they cant just say, I think you hear fine, I dont care what the audiologist says, even tho that has happened to me. Even a medical doctor cannot dispute the audiologist findings, unless, that doctor is also qualified in audiology. In other words a degree in Psychology does not mean that a doctor can dispute a qualified audiologists opinion.

If you look at your old audio reports, and the audiologist offered the opinion that the Veterans hearing loss was most likely due to exposure in the military, then you could have a "CUE (clear unmistakable error) claim". That is, if the regional office failed to consider that pertinent information in evaluating your claim, then that is CUE, as they are required to consider all evidence. If they have conflicting evidence that "trumps" the audiologist report, then they must state what it is in "reasons for decision". For example, if you had 3 audiologists, and one of them said it was military service but the other two said it was because you played drums in a rock band, then they have effectively "refuted" what the first audioligist said. However, if ONE audiologist says military related and the other says no, then it is a tie, and the regulations require a "favor the Veteran" attitude. That is the doctrine of "equipose". A Veteran is not required to prove his claim beyond a reasonable doubt, but only has to meet a lesser standard "at least as likely as not". We do not have to have 4 witnesses that were there when a bomb went off in a bunker that trashed our hearing to prove it. An opinion, from a qualified audiologist, that the hearing loss was "at least 50% likely due to military service will work", at least upon appeal even tho the regional office will probably turn it down. The BVA is much more thorough. Hope this helps.

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I have been approved for SC to hearing loss. Of course, the regional office denied it. The BVA, however, approved it upon appeal. When I appealed, I did my homework. I showed that San Diego California NTSC was right at the base of the airport, where planes land and take off constantly. To do this, I used google maps, and printed a map of the SSC and noted its close proximity to the end of the runway and my barracks.

Next, I pointed out that my audiologist stated, "the most likely cause of the Veterans hearing loss was military service".

If your VA audiologist didnt/wont do that, then get a more "Veteran friendly" audiologist who will. Explain to the audiologist that you were exposed to excessive noise in the military, and were not offered hearing protection if that is the case. You can also mention that you do not work in a particularly noisy environment (if that is the case) and that you dint listen to loud music. Be 100% truthfully, as I was, and offer "evidence" to your audiologist. Remember, that the average hearing impaired person simply lives with their hearing loss for about ten years before doing anything about it, such as getting hearing aids. Your hearing loss will be measured by the audiologist, and will offer indisputable proof of hearing loss. Service connection will be the issue..that is, if you have documented hearing loss as measured by your audiologist. The Regional Office regularly fails to consider ALL evidence(as required by regulations)..that is, in my case the evidence that the audiologist opined that my hearing loss was most likely due to military service. The regulations state that a layperson, such as a rating service rep can NOT override this audiology opinion WITHOUT compelling medical evidence to the contrary. That is, they cant just say, I think you hear fine, I dint care what the audiologist says, even tho that has happened to me. Even a medical doctor cannot dispute the audiologist findings, unless, that doctor is also qualified in audiology. In other words a degree in Psychology does not mean that a doctor can dispute a qualified audiologists opinion.

If you look at your old audio reports, and the audiologist offered the opinion that the Veterans hearing loss was most likely due to exposure in the military, then you could have a "CUE (clear unmistakable error) claim". That is, if the regional office failed to consider that pertinent information in evaluating your claim, then that is CUE, as they are required to consider all evidence. If they have conflicting evidence that "trumps" the audiologist report, then they must state what it is in "reasons for decision". For example, if you had 3 audiologists, and one of them said it was military service but the other two said it was because you played drums in a rock band, then they have effectively "refuted" what the first audiologist said. However, if ONE audiologist says military related and the other says no, then it is a tie, and the regulations require a "favor the Veteran" attitude. That is the doctrine of "equipose". A Veteran is not required to prove his claim beyond a reasonable doubt, but only has to meet a lesser standard "at least as likely as not". We do not have to have 4 witnesses that were there when a bomb went off in a bunker that trashed our hearing to prove it. An opinion, from a qualified audiologist, that the hearing loss was "at least 50% likely due to military service will work", at least upon appeal even tho the regional office will probably turn it down. The BVA is much more thorough. Hope this helps.

Thanks, you gave me some good info and good angles angles in which to present my claim. I am waiting until the VA makes a ruling on the claims I already have in the hanger before presenting this hearing loss and tinnitus claim. I don't won't to hold anything up. The VA might rate me 0% on the hearing loss and 10% on the tinnitus but with the evidence that I have, I don't see how they could consider all the evidence and come up with another denial. I'm sure it will be long and drug out, all have been so far. What I really have going for me on the hearing loss and tinnitus claim is the Va's own ear, nose and throat specialist making the statement in writing that the audiologist C&P examiner was full of it rendering her opinion that my hearing loss and tinnitus was form old age and not acoustical trauma. I'm sure all the C&P examiners are instructed to lean the denial direction and may even get bonuses for such. I have 4 pieces of compelling evidence against one C&P examiners incorrect opinion and the smoking gun is the a VA doctor ENT specialist saying her report is incorrect about the condition stemming from old age. He said anyone with any audiologist knowledge can look at your hearing test chart and know it is definitely from acoustical trauma and not old age and after looking at your scared ear drum, any doctor can see that it happened many years ago. Thanks. Merry Christmas and God Bless

danang_69

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