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Degenerative Joint Disease


Baghdaddy

Question

Hello Everyone,

New to the forum and curious to see if anyone can help me. Back in 2004 I was rated a 10% overall rating for DJD of right shoulder, cervical spine, thoracic spine, lumbar spine, bilateral hips, and bilateral knees. Since then I had MRI's of spine and found ruptured discs in each spine section. I have seen people rated with percentages like these for example: right knee-20%, left knee-20%, cervical spine 30%, lumbar spine,30% etc. Just curious to see if anyone can explain why I only have a combined rating or 10% for all of it? Thanks in advance.

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I encourage you to carefully reread your rating decision from 2004. If the issues need a different rating, more specific and are service connected, then you have choices to make. For instance if these issues were service connected 'individually', haven't improved or require medical care, then like anything, compensatiion may be possible. If you got a discharge physical and or SMRs that show these very individual conditions, that really helps.

Keep us in the loop,

Best to ya,

Cg'up2009!

p.s. er, maybe someone else will pipe up, any which way, I'll keep ya on the radar.

p.s.s. Have you got a copy of your Service Medical Records? C-file? read and reread 'em.

Hello Everyone,

New to the forum and curious to see if anyone can help me. Back in 2004 I was rated a 10% overall rating for DJD of right shoulder, cervical spine, thoracic spine, lumbar spine, bilateral hips, and bilateral knees. Since then I had MRI's of spine and found ruptured discs in each spine section. I have seen people rated with percentages like these for example: right knee-20%, left knee-20%, cervical spine 30%, lumbar spine,30% etc. Just curious to see if anyone can explain why I only have a combined rating or 10% for all of it? Thanks in advance.

Edited by cowgirl (see edit history)
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TITLE 38--PENSIONS, BONUSES, AND VETERANS' RELIEF

CHAPTER I--DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

PART 4--SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES--Table of Contents

Subpart B--Disability Ratings

Sec. 4.71a Schedule of ratings--musculoskeletal system.

Acute, Subacute, or Chronic Diseases

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rating

------------------------------------------------------------------------

5000 Osteomyelitis, acute, subacute, or chronic:

Of the pelvis, vertebrae, or extending into major joints, or

with multiple localization or with long history of

intractability and debility, anemia, amyloid liver changes,

or other continuous constitutional symptoms.................. 100

Frequent episodes, with constitutional symptoms............... 60

With definite involucrum or sequestrum, with or without

discharging sinus............................................ 30

With discharging sinus or other evidence of active infection

within the past 5 years...................................... 20

Inactive, following repeated episodes, without evidence of

active infection in past 5 years............................. 10

Note (1): A rating of 10 percent, as an exception to the

amputation rule, is to be assigned in any case of active

osteomyelitis where the amputation rating for the affected

part is no percent. This 10 percent rating and the other

partial ratings of 30 percent or less are to be combined with

ratings for ankylosis, limited motion, nonunion or malunion,

shortening, etc., subject, of course, to the amputation rule.

The 60 percent rating, as it is based on constitutional

symptoms, is not subject to the amputation rule. A rating for

osteomyelitis will not be applied following cure by removal

or radical resection of the affected bone.

[[Page 354]]

Note (2): The 20 percent rating on the basis of activity

within the past 5 years is not assignable following the

initial infection of active osteomyelitis with no subsequent

reactivation. The prerequisite for this historical rating is

an established recurrent osteomyelitis. To qualify for the 10

percent rating, 2 or more episodes following the initial

infection are required. This 20 percent rating or the 10

percent rating, when applicable, will be assigned once only

to cover disability at all sites of previously active

infection with a future ending date in the case of the 20

percent rating.

5001 Bones and joints, tuberculosis of, active or inactive:

Active........................................................ 100

Inactive: See Secs. 4.88b and 4.89...........................

5002 Arthritis rheumatoid (atrophic) As an active process:

With constitutional manifestations associated with active

joint involvement, totally incapacitating.................... 100

Less than criteria for 100% but with weight loss and anemia

productive of severe impairment of health or severely

incapacitating exacerbations occurring 4 or more times a year

or a lesser number over prolonged periods.................... 60

Symptom combinations productive of definite impairment of

health objectively supported by examination findings or

incapacitating exacerbations occurring 3 or more times a year 40

One or two exacerbations a year in a well-established

diagnosis.................................................... 20

For chronic residuals:

For residuals such as limitation of motion or ankylosis,

favorable or unfavorable, rate under the appropriate

diagnostic codes for the specific joints involved. Where,

however, the limitation of motion of the specific joint or

joints involved is noncompensable under the codes a rating of

10 percent 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 5002. Limitation of

motion must be objectively confirmed by findings such as

swelling, muscle spasm, or satisfactory evidence of painful

motion.

Note: The ratings for the active process will not be combined

with the residual ratings for limitation of motion or

ankylosis. Assign the higher evaluation.

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.

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