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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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  • 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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Katie

New To Va Procedures, Dic Filed For Ihd

Question

My husband died suddenly in 1996 from a sudden heart attack at the age of 49. He was in Vietnam from 1968 to 1969. He had never used the VAMC for any reason, but I called the VA approx. 2 months after he died to ask if his heart attack could be related to Agent Orange, and was told no, so I never filed a claim. He was never sick and so it was a shock to lose him so suddenly and I blamed myself for not paying closer attention to him, and thought I should have seen signs that he wasn't well. I never asked for anything from the VA, not for the funeral, burial or headstone. Infact I didn't get his footstone until I filed for the DIC in August of 2010. It was delivered to the cemetary and it's beautiful and I'm so grateful to the VA for giving it to us.

Getting back to the DIC, my husband had an autopsy done because he died suddenly and was so young. The cause of the death was stated as "severe atherosclerotic heart disease". I sent all the needed documents when the VSO filed (which I might add was not the most supportive person I have met ) but I didn't have a copy of his autopsy report until a couple of weeks ago. My question is...........should i send the autopsy report to be added to my claim? Basically is says exactly what the death certificate says with a little more detail. My fear is that the death certificate doesn't say "Ischemic Heart Disease" so I'm afraid I'm going to be denied. I also would like to know if it would help if I write to the doctor that did the autopsy and ask for her professional opinion as to whether or not his heart disease could have been accelerated due to Agent Orange exposure.

Any thoughts?

Thank you,

Kate

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2 answers to this question

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"My question is...........should i send the autopsy report to be added to my claim"

Yes but send a Copy -no originals- they loose stuff.

"My husband died suddenly in 1996 from a sudden heart attack at the age of 49"

Mine died in 1994 in the barn in seconds after he collapsed. He was 47.We thought he was getting better as he was recovering from a stroke and had participated in the stressful 21 day inhouse PTSD program weeks before he died.

"when the VSO filed (which I might add was not the most supportive person I have met )" some of them treat widows terribly. I assume it is because they don't really understand the widow's benefits.(maybe not even veterans benefits as well. I met some incompetent reps.

"I also would like to know if it would help if I write to the doctor that did the autopsy and ask for her professional opinion as to whether or not his heart disease could have been accelerated due to Agent Orange exposure."

I sure dont think you would need a statement like that for your claim.Your claim is solid as it is.

And this is well out of the range of what a ME could opine on.

In my case I proven the VA caused his death (FTCA/1151) in 1997.

When my daughter insisted I re open (she is a vet and raised some issues I had not considered)

I then proved he died of undiagnosed and untreated DMII which caused his CVA and IHD.

My biggest regret is that I believed (and the President at the time made this point too)that VA health care was the best Gov run health care in the world and every time I did question his care the VA would appease me in some way.A nurse had hollered at him once when he opened his med rec file so we didn't even know he had a right to see his med recs.

Still the VA certainly does save lives every day and there are some fabulous medical professionals at every VA.

Atherosclerotic heart disease is ischemic heart disease.

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Welcome to Hadit. Berta is a good place to start.

My condolences for the loss of your husband. DIC benefits were earned by your husbands service.

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