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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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      Your question has probably been asked before so the fastest way to find the information you need is to search for it.
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    • How to get your questions answered...


      All VA Claims questions should be posted on our forums. Read the forums without registering, to post you must register it’s free. Register for a free account.

      Tips on posting on the forums.

      Post a clear title like ‘Need help preparing PTSD claim’ or “VA med center won’t schedule my surgery” instead of ‘I have a question’.


      Knowledgable people who don’t have time to read all posts may skip yours if your need isn’t clear in the title. I don’t read all posts every login and will gravitate towards those I have more info on.


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      Post clear questions and then give background info on them.

      Examples:

      A. I was previously denied for apnea – Should I refile a claim?


      I was diagnosed with apnea in service and received a CPAP machine but claim was denied in 2008. Should I refile?



      B. I may have PTSD- how can I be sure?

      I was involved in traumatic incident on base in 1974 and have had nightmares ever since, but I did not go to mental health while enlisted. How can I get help?



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    • Exams that were being sent strictly to contractors before, due to VAMCs not being open, are starting to be routed back to VAMCs. This is going forward from last Friday- not sure if prior scheduled exams will be re-created for VAMC vs vendor.
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Jaina Bledsoe

Mst Diagnosis And Nexus

Question

I was wondering what other veteran's experiences have been with NEXUS evaluations, IMO's, and diagnosis in general. In my own case I have noticed that the NEXUS evaluation questions seemed to focus more on events and history prior to entering the service rather than the actual assault while in service. This has created a nightmare for myself, as there was some early physical abuse by a parent up to age 10. My evaluators (there have been 3 now - but only one was done in person), have latched on to a Borderline Personality Disorder diagnosis as a root cause / comorbid occurance of the PTSD and Major Depressive Disorder they have also diagnosed. this has resulted in a "less likely than not" determination.

I found factual errors, chronology errors, misquotes, disregarded information, missing records, statements lacking the context I shared, symptoms developing post assault being used to support the "pre-existing" determination etc. and so far I can't get anyone to address them properly. Each time I have attempted to do so yet another evaluator reads the first evaluation, and either simply concurs if I am lucky or adds more errors more often than not. It has felt like I'm the victim of a horrible game of "grapevine" that I can't seem to end. In the meantime, I'm 1.5 years into my claim and had 2 denials (initial and reconsideration).

I'd like to hear from other veterans if they have experienced this, what they did to combat it, and if they were successful. I am scheduling for a DRO hearing soon and I need to know how best to address these issues without feeling like the RO is going to look at me and think "This person isn't happy about anything and questions everyone's judgement. they definately have a BPD issue..... claim denied". All I want is a fair shake on this thing. If they keep denying me based on incomplete or erroneous information I'm certainly not going to let that fly. I have been more open and honest withthe VA than my own family and friends, yet I feel like I am being painted into a "malingerer / liar / exaggerator" corner. My own personal statements have only been cited when they can use a portion to substantiate the BPD diagnosis, despite one being specific to clarification and dispute of the errors in the NEXUS.

FRUSTRATING AND INVALIDATING!!

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I cant answer your question, but I can share something with you that my civilian therapist(also a Vietnam vet) shared with me.NO CHARGE!LOL!

I too was diagnosed, depending what year or provider it was, with bpd. HE nor any other civilian mh professional I have seen considers me to be this. they dont. HE said " the va always gives vets this disorder to prevent them from collecting compensation"

You need to have a civilian psychologist negate THAT dx, to undo the damage done, because they will use it against you. if youre not bpd starting it will "appear' you are when youre at your most frustrate dealing with them/wanting compensation from them, and it just suits them fine.

Thats the best advice I can give you. good luck! Mystic

Edited by mysticcherokee usn vet

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One way to combat it is not to talk about your childhood with the VA. Now once the cat is out of the bag you probably need an IMO to show that the abuse you had during the military has caused your current disability.

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Thought you might be interested in this newspaper article claiming the military gives the stigma of personality disorders to us to prevent us filing claims for benefits:

http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20120225/ARCHIVES/202251051/-1/todayspaper?Title=Stigma-seen-in-military-finding-TROOPS-Are-psychiatric-diagnoses-being-twisted-to-force-soldiers-out-

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Thanks Mystic. I will be sure to take this along to my DRO hearing. I have scoured my complete records (requested from VA), and can't seem to find the psychiatric evaluation required to be done prior to issuing my PD discharge....

Not suprising, since those records also had been sanitized of nearly all references to hospital treatment for 2 suicide attempts immediately after my assault (requests directly to providing hospitals have been submitted). You would think the DoD would find it more plausible to lose the whole damn medical file than risk being discovered someone is selectively removing info.

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You are very welcome and good luck with your hearing. You should google that topic title and see if ya get any more similar hits, jmo.

Yes, Ive got psych records missing from my smrs to, and theyr important. I was seen for depression over a period of a year after a coerced abortion. Those records are gone. tho Ive a statement from the attending shrink saying that hed seen me on a monthly babsis for depression for a wile. STILL! THAT was in my personal record collection, and if I hadnt had that and a lot of other stuff, Id be royally you know what. Sincerely, Mystic

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    • By USMC_VET
      A little background first on this specific claim to provide greater context for the readers.
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      When the CPAP arrived i spent a month trying to get it to work but every morning it would show only 45-60 minutes of time.  I have nightmares at night, some i remember some i dont but would rip off the mask or when i woke up would be so worked up i didnt put it back on.  I do cycles of trying it for awhile and stopping for awhile, giving it a chance because my wife is worried about the OSA and its health effects. 
      My claim history was this, as i stated i made my first claim in 2016 and was denied.  I reopened the claim (when that was still an option in 2018) and was denied again.  What i submitted was bascially the VA medical record showing that i had it, that i was ordered a CPAP and sworn statements by myself, my wife and buddies in the Corps that stated they saw symptoms in 2003-2006.  I had NO nexus or medical proof that it began in service
      I made a mistake in 2019 when it was denied again and NEVER filed a NOD as i kindof gave up when that and other new claims for increases were denied, but I DID make a intent to file back in July 2019.  I was out of the VA regulation changes loop and didnt know that they had gotten rid of reopening and moved to the Supplemental evidence route so in February through April i decided to really focus on making a quality claim since my 2016/2018 claims were more shot in the dark hoping that the VA would just grant it.  I went to specialists in the field for the claims i was making and got updated diagnosis of symptoms and effects, got my sworn statements (which in my opinion has more 'umph' than a buddy statement) more detailed in terms of observed symptoms, timelines and effects upon my life as well as i went out and got two IMO's. The first IMO was for PTSD from Dr. Elaine Tripi in Michigan whos IMO got the VA to drop their attempt to reduce my rating in 2015/2016 (and i suspect it was because her IMO made a case for an increased rating). In that IMO she detailed my history, current symptoms, etc as well as opined on how my PTSD affected my OSA symptoms and how it interfered with its treatment.  I also got a IMO from Dr. Anaise who wrote a lengthy (near 50 pages) on how my OSA is aggravated by Tinnitus and PTSD and interferes with my ability to go to sleep, stay asleep and interferes with my treatment.  
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      Since that supplemental claim was received on 4/24/20 (todays date is 6/18/20) I have had two psych exams and two records reviews through QTC (private company the VA contracts to do DBQ/exams).  The first pysch exam was related to my request for an increase for PTSD back in April and in May i had a NP contact me who was reviewing my med records for OSA and had follow up questions regarding my condition both current and past.  In that conversation i talked about how i never went to go get checked because i never knew what OSA was at that time, thought it was normal to snore, etc., how BAS is frowned upon in the Marines for things like that, my history with it since i got out up to now and how my nightmares make me rip off the CPAP at night.  I did ask her if she had seen my imo, other evidence and she said no JUST my medical record.  I know examiners arent raters and all but I find it weird that VA will deny IMO's as valid if they dont "review veterans entire file" but will accept something from a examiner if its negative when only their VA med file is shared.  Its great advice to always bring your evidence with you to a exam but given the current COVID situation ALL of my exams thus far have been telephone or video. I asked her what the exam was specifically for or what they asked her to examine and she said it was basically whether or not my OSA was service connected and occured in service. I do believe it was but i was making the claim as SECONDARY to PTSD and/or Tinnitus as an aggravation which she was unaware of. I fired off some angry messages via the IRIS system to the VA regarding this (no idea if they got included in my record or reached a rater since the only response i got was "thank you for contact us heres how to make a new claim").  
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      1) Do the damn research and work the claim yourself, no VSO or rep is going to care as much as you do. You care about your case, they have 15,50,100 other vets whos cases they are working and even if they are a great VSO/rep they cant possibly give a crap as much as you do.  dont hope the VA just "gives" you the rating you deserve make it so they cant NOT give it to you with the proper evidence.
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      Hey all,
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    • By ThomasGray
      First off, hello and thank you in advance for any help that can be provided. Also, I apologize if something is not clear, trying my best to keep things concise.
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    • By Wise Guy
      I have a current claim for several injuries to include PTSD. I did some research and found out the best way of getting a rating for migraines is to have a diary through the VA of the migraines. For my PTSD which I got diagnosed through the VA in February, I'm taking Doxazosin (Nightmares), Hydroxyzine (Anxiety), and Sertraline (Mental Health). All of the medication causes headaches. However, the Sertraline only causes headaches within the first 2 weeks. I was going to wait until the claim was complete before filing for Migraines because I wanted to already have the rating for PTSD first so I can claim the migraines as secondary. But is there a way to still file for it now to still say it's because of the medication for the PTSD? Which route should I go or is there a better one? And should I talk to my VA counselor/medication doctor to get him to state that my migraines are caused by my PTSD and medications? I heard every time you file for a new claim, then everything gets re evaluated so it would be ideal if there was a way to get everything done now. 
       
      Also, I did get diagnosed through the VA for Sleep Apnea back in February,. So, can I say that the migraines was also caused by the Sleep Apnea?
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    • https://community.hadit.com/searching-for-va-claims-information-on-hadit.com/

       

      Your question has probably been asked before so the fastest way to find the information you need is to search for it.
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    • How to get your questions answered...


      All VA Claims questions should be posted on our forums. Read the forums without registering, to post you must register it’s free. Register for a free account.

      Tips on posting on the forums.

      Post a clear title like ‘Need help preparing PTSD claim’ or “VA med center won’t schedule my surgery” instead of ‘I have a question’.


      Knowledgable people who don’t have time to read all posts may skip yours if your need isn’t clear in the title. I don’t read all posts every login and will gravitate towards those I have more info on.


      Use paragraphs instead of one huge, rambling introduction or story. Again – You want to make it easy for others to help. If your question is buried in a monster paragraph there are fewer who will investigate to dig it out.


      Leading to:

      Post clear questions and then give background info on them.

      Examples:

      A. I was previously denied for apnea – Should I refile a claim?


      I was diagnosed with apnea in service and received a CPAP machine but claim was denied in 2008. Should I refile?



      B. I may have PTSD- how can I be sure?

      I was involved in traumatic incident on base in 1974 and have had nightmares ever since, but I did not go to mental health while enlisted. How can I get help?



      This gives members a starting point to ask clarifying questions like “Can you post the Reasons for Denial from your claim?” etc.

      Note:

      Your firsts posts on the board may be delayed before they show up, as they are reviewed, this process does not take long and the review requirement will be removed usually by the 6th post, though we reserve the right to keep anyone on moderator preview.

      This process allows us to remove spam and other junk posts before they hit the board. We want to keep the focus on VA Claims and this helps us do that.
      • 2 replies
    • Exams that were being sent strictly to contractors before, due to VAMCs not being open, are starting to be routed back to VAMCs. This is going forward from last Friday- not sure if prior scheduled exams will be re-created for VAMC vs vendor.
      • 7 replies
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