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Cervical Arthritis



Greetings (not to be confused with the army in the 60's),

I have a 40% combined disability rating with the VA for ptsd, shoulder and right knee from an explosion in Vietnam in 1969. I just had a piece of shrapnel removed from my heel from the ambush and was wondering if I should claim it. It probably won't do anything for the % disability and it is healing.

My other question is that I have cervical spondylosis "pretty bad" from an x-ray in 2009 with an ossific fragment posterior to something. I haven't seen the latest x-ray report from this week (it isn't posted yet on myhealthevet, yet) but my NP said it has progressed. I was in jump school and was picked first to demonstrate a PLF off the 4 foot platform and my heel hit the edge and did a front cannonball and landed on my head with two distinct pops in my neck. Being 19 at the time and considering myself bulletproof, I didn't report it. In the ambush, myself and my squad leader were launched about 15 feet from where we were walking. Is there enough evidence from my previous disability rating to apply it to my neck? I was a distance runner in HS and never played contact sports and have never been in an auto accident.

Will probably file with the DAV but would like some input from anyone.

Thank you.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

"I just had a piece of shrapnel removed from my heel from the ambush and was wondering if I should claim it."

You might have a ratable scar. See Scar ratings in the VA SRD (VA Schedule of Disability Ratings here.

"Is there enough evidence from my previous disability rating to apply it to my neck? "

Do you mean is there enough to claim it as secondary to the SC shoulder and right knee??

Hard to say..... but possible if a doctor agrees.

I wouldn't claim "neck injury" if I were you, use the medical term for it.

Not enough info here to really help yet....

Do you mean you are seeking results of a C & P exam at ebenefits?

Did you claim cervical spondylosis ?

I am surprised ,with the explosion and the PLF incident that you dont have residuals of TBI.

Has the PTSD gotten worse since the last rating for it??

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I'm going to say happy Memorial Day. If you're like me, most of my memories concerning Memorial Day aren't happy. But I do remember some of the good times with the guys not here now.


Finally figured out how to paste this. Will try and get my 2009 xray pasted her also.


Three views of the cervical spine


Lateral, frontal, odontoid views. Comparison made to CR cervical
spine dated August 25, 2009

Her findings consistent with droopy shoulder syndrome. There are
multilevel degenerative changes and disc height loss, which is
most severe at the C6-C7 level. There is straightening of the
normal cervical lordosis. There is mild grade 1 anterolisthesis
of C3 on C4. There is multilevel facet arthrosis which is most
severe at the C2-C4 level. There is probable grade 1
anterolisthesis of C7 on T1. The dens is not well visualized on
the odontoid view.


Multilevel degenerative disease as noted above, with progression
since the prior exam in 2009.

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This is from 2009. Ossific fragment isn't mentioned in the May 2014 xray.


A.P., lateral and odontoid views of the cervical spine and
multiple views of the left shoulder were presented for

On the lateral view, the cervical vertebra can be visualized past
the cervicothoracic junction. There is disc space narrowing at
the C3/4 and C6/7 levels. There is an ossific fragment posterior
to the spinous process of T1, possibly from old trauma. There is
diffuse facet hypertrophy and sclerosis, which is more prominent
on the left. There are no acute displaced fractures or
dislocations. No lytic or blastic lesions are seen. The
prevertebral soft tissues are within normal limits. The C-1 -- 2
relationship is preserved.

There is minimal osteophyte formation on the glenoid and there is
mild glenohumeral joint space narrowing. There is no evidence of
acute displaced fracture. The visualized portions of the lung
and soft tissue is grossly unremarkable.


1. Degenerative changes throughout the cervical spine as above.
If this patient has a history of trauma , CT scan would be better
for evaluation. 2. Mild degenerative change of the left
shoulder as above

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