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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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  • Most Common VA Disabilities Claimed for Compensation:   

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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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ironsoldier77

Going For Tdiu , Again!

Question

I have been seeing the TBI clinic at my va hospital for a few years now. I had previously put in a claim for mild TBI. I had multiple contact with blasts in Iraq. 2 Combat tours with 1st AD Infantry. I also have a PTSD rating of 50% and Tinnitus at 10%, total 60%. I have been unemployed since 2008 and I went through voc rehab and they found me infeasable for work,untrainable,not expected to get gainful employment. I have gone through Neuropsych testing and here is the diagnosis from that testing. I am hoping this will help me get atleast 10% so I can get TDIU. I have already put in a claim for increase on my PTSD rating,mild TBI and TDIU all at the same time. Just did this on wednesday.

CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATDIONS: Mr. Anderson is a 32 year old,White,married and unemployed when the last testing session was completed. His work ihistory does not reflect stable emplyment. He was referred for a cognitive evaluation by his primary care provider after complaining of difficulty in concentrating and meory problems. He has an unremarkable academic history with a high school graduation and one semester of college. HIs family of origin was stable:however his father died just before he left for Iraq. H has a stable relationship history in his only marriage of eight years. He has three years of credible service in the the army with two combat tours to Iraq. He reports being stunned from multiple blast in juries while serving in Iraq. He has no history of substance abuse , or legal problems. His social life is limited to family due to anxiety associated with being in crowds and other symptoms of PTSD. He generally functions idependently and attends to his activities of daily living.His premorbid level of verbal intellectual functioning was estimated to be high average. Current intellectual functioning was in the average reage. All IQ scores were in the average range except for working memory which was low average. He has mild impairment in concentration and focusing on information in the auditory channel. Mild impairment in concentrating and focusing could contribute to the mild loss of intellectual functioning reflected in the drop from high average to average intelligence. Memory functioning was avearage to low average. Auditory memory, visual working memory and immediate memory were lower than expected for his intellectual functioning. Visual memory was intact despite mild difficulty in focusing and concentrating on visual channel information. He has had significant losses of memory abilities. His observed behavior, history and the test data are consistent with the following diagnoses:

Axis I-Mild Cognitive Impairment likely associated with Blast Injuries

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Depression (ICD-9-CM 311./300.4)

Insomnia (ICD-9-CM 780.52)

Tobacco use disorder

Axis II-NONE

Axis III-Brain diseases due to trauma (ICD-9-CM 3)

Acute pharyngitis

Low back pain

Knee: arthralgia

Tobacco use disorder

Axis IV-Exposure to combat and loss of job

Axis V- GAF=55, mild to moderate impairment

Medical problems that could contribute to cognitive impairment include brain disease and pain. PTSD, depression and insomnia could also contribute to impaired concentration. Hearing impairment could contribute to auditory memory problems and a hearing examination may be warranted. HIs past history of having tubes in his ears as a child could have contributed to a failure to develop auditory memory abilities. Medications that could contribute to cognitive impairment include clonazepam, but this is usually seen in much older patients. Mr. Anderson may benefit from medications that target concentration like those used in the treatment to attention deficit disorder,and an evaluation for a trial of one of these medications is recommended. Unfortunately the prognosis for PTSD with mild traumatic brain injury is worse than the prognosis for PTSD without brain injury. Most of the treatments for PTSD involve learning new strategies for managing the symptoms of PTSD, and when learning is impaired, progress in treatment may be slowed. Continued treatment for depression, insomnia and PTSD is recommended. He is also being seen in the speech pathology for cognitive rehabilitation and this should be continued until maximum benefit is achieved. With the recent loss of his employment, a vocational rehabilitation referral may be warranted, depending upon his progress in the PTSD outpatient treatment program.

So, thats the report from the doctor that did the psych testing. When I read this it almost sounds like a "slam dunk" and that I might get awarded a SC for mild TBI. I really hope it does, because it would make me eligable for TDIU, which is what I really need. I was also wondering if its possible that the VA could go ahead and award 100% P & T instead of just TDIU?

I am on full SSD benefits as well and that along with my VA benefits at 60% is all i have to live by. We barely have enough to keep our house. I am almost at the point to where my life just seems meaningless and I really hope I get the TDIU, mild TBI and increase for my PTSD. Im having a hard time gettng an increase for my PTSD. It seems that i have to be some deranged lunatic, murder someone or get locked up. to be even considered for an increase. I dont know what to say when I go to the C&P exams for PTSD increases.

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ironsoldier77,

Voc Rehab denied you " I have been unemployed since 2008 and I went through voc rehab and they found me infeasable for work,untrainable,not expected to get gainful employment"........Did you push this issue with your claim, The VA would have a hard time explaining this in a IU denial.

I think the TBI claim will get you some more %, but it would seem you are already eligible for IU regardless of the TBI award. I also see mention about a Back, and knee condition......are these possible SC injuries?....If so, file for them NOW while your prior claims are fresh.

If you do not already have one, get a copy of your SMR's.....

Don't give up, all of us here have been there done that.......you will learn patients, but things will go smoother if you dot your i's and cross your T's for each condition you claim.

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I would agree your TBI should and could be SC this go around if not a % then at least zero which will make it SC and eligible for treatment and rating if it gets worse.

If I were you on your PTSD % I would go to the tables for mental health ratings and give that a read and see were you fit in the 50% or in the 70% category. Quite a few vets that have gotten 70% for PTSD I have seen getting 100% IU but 100% schedular is very hard to get. As it should be.

Not to preach to you but If I were you I would think long and hard on the retiring at such a young age. If you can't work then sure you are going to have to live with it, but working makes living a purpose and in reading your post a see some depression popping in it and that alone can be a biatch. I know.

Please do yourself and your family a favor and go get some help from the vet center we Vietnam vets do not want our proud Iraq vets to end up with what we had to go through!

One other thing on your post, it hit a trigger with me on my PTSD. You see I also buried my dad 3 weeks before I left for Vietnam and war! I understand how hard that was for you and what you have had to go though and wanted you to know..

Welcome home and you young men and women are doing and have done a bang up job!

Thank you, Stillhere

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What is SMR??

ironsoldier77,

Voc Rehab denied you " I have been unemployed since 2008 and I went through voc rehab and they found me infeasable for work,untrainable,not expected to get gainful employment"........Did you push this issue with your claim, The VA would have a hard time explaining this in a IU denial.

I think the TBI claim will get you some more %, but it would seem you are already eligible for IU regardless of the TBI award. I also see mention about a Back, and knee condition......are these possible SC injuries?....If so, file for them NOW while your prior claims are fresh.

If you do not already have one, get a copy of your SMR's.....

Don't give up, all of us here have been there done that.......you will learn patients, but things will go smoother if you dot your i's and cross your T's for each condition you claim.

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How do I get the SMR? I really dont think there would be anything in there of use. I never went to sick call. The only time I went was when I came back from my last combat tour. I was starting to show symptoms of PTSD and was put on prozac by the army docs. Other than that, there probably isnt anything in there. Would be interesting to see though.

SMR = Service Medical Records

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