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Need Guidance On Reopening Claim

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Up until Oct 08 I was drawing 40% disability. 10%of the 40% was for lubarsacral strain. I reopened my claim and was awarded 90% 4 months later. During the claim process I had back surgery which gave me temporary relief. Now 2 years post-op my back condition is worse than when I had the surgery. My rating breakdown was

40% right lower extremity radiculopathy

20% left lower extremity radiculopathy

40 % residuals phlebitus right leg

40% lumbosacral strain with spondylosis and DDD

I have reopened my case 3 weeks ago. When I saw my VSO 3 weeks ago he reopened my case for the lumbosacral strain and left and right radiculopathy.

After reading many posts about vets with spinal problems on these boards I feel that now I am short changing myself by not filing for other problems i.e. foot drop,

sciatica, poplteal nerve problems and perpheral neuropathy etc. Is it my reponsibility to put these codes on my new application or if I have these should I make sure that my doctor states these problems in his report that will be going to the 'va? I currently am seeing both neurologist and orthopedic surgeon. Both are private practice.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I am just a layperson but I would like to respond....


to both questions!

I feel if you don't file a claim for something, that disability will be overlooked/ignored more often than not.

By bringing it to their attention, then they have to address it.

If you can get your doctor(s) to mention the various problems and relationship to your service connection either direct or via secondary, that cannot hurt your claiming. NEXUS is always important.

Use my site if you wish. It might offer additional help on researching and organizing, etc.


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Thankyou so much for the advice. I just visited your website and was quite impressed. I always have copies made of any visit I make to doctors. I guess I'm using a combination of all 3 of your options you list. I am forever doing research on the internet about different conditions and your site definitely provides enough links to get that info as well forum sites for vets......Jeff

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Are you able to work? If you are trying to get 100% schedular you need another 50% since you are 90% now. If you can get total plus 60% you can get SMC "S".

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Are you able to work? If you are trying to get 100% schedular you need another 50% since you are 90% now. If you can get total plus 60% you can get SMC "S".

Yes I am still working but for how much longer I don't know . Weakness in legs plus pain is making it difficult. I don't know if I should file with my asking for a upgrade in disability the form that asks me to be considered unemployable too. I'm not familiar with SMC"S". What is that

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Make sure you VSO go for the K awards too. File for everything. If you do not file for it the VA will not look at it.

Are you able to work? If you are trying to get 100% schedular you need another 50% since you are 90% now. If you can get total plus 60% you can get SMC "S".

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