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Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney Cancer) Moderates Thoughts




I need advice and help. While in the military I had Kidney stones and was admitted to a hospital. Fast forward to 2012 and developed Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney Cancer) and had to have the same kidney removed.

Do you think this is/could be service connected ? Should I file a claim ?

One of the MOS's I had in the military was as an X-Ray Technician.

Is there any former X-Ray technicans out there that have developed Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney Cancer ) ?


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There are many abstractys and studies on the internet showing a possioble link between kidney stones and renal cancer.



Then again there are some studies that do not suggest a link.

It is possible if you claim the renal cancer as due to the inservice kidney stones, VA will use any negative medical evidence they can to deny you, bnut if you get an IMO doctor, who can use strong abstracts and make a full medical rationale , then their opinion would have weight with the VA specifically if they are a urologist.

That first link above does have some info regarding ionizing X ray exposures.

Also you might want to search the BVA wev site to see how other similar claims like yours were handled.

This is an unusual one.
Unusual because renal disease is the only cause for HBP that VA usually recognises without problems for the vet trying to prove SC HBP.

"The Board finds that the requirements for a grant of secondary service connection have been met with respect to his right renal cell carcinoma claim. As to Wallin element (1), the medical evidence of record demonstrates that the Veteran is currently diagnosed with right renal cell carcinoma, and underwent a laparoscopic hand-assisted right radical nephrectomy in May 2006. With respect to Wallin element (2), it is undisputed that the Veteran is currently service-connected for hypertension. There is also evidence that the Veteran's hypertension preexisted his renal cell carcinoma by over a decade. In this regard, and turning to crucial Wallin element (3), the most recent July 2012 VHA examiner, the Chief of Hematology and Oncology at the Durham VA Medical Center, reflected that it was at least as likely as not that the Veteran's service-connected hypertension contributed to the development of his renal cell carcinoma. While the Board recognizes that rationale for this opinion was not provided, there are no contradictory opinions of record.

The Board finds that the July 2012 VHA examiner's opinion, persuasively reflects that the Veteran's right renal cell carcinoma is proximately due to or the result of his service-connected hypertension. Resolving reasonable doubt in the Veteran's favor, the Board finds that the criteria for secondary service connection for right renal cell carcinoma are met. 38 U.S.C.A. § 5107(b).


Service connection for right renal cell carcinoma, status-post laparoscopic hand-assisted right radical nephrectomy is granted."


What is the 20% SC for?

What other Mos's did you have?

Edited by Berta (see edit history)
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Dear Berta,

Thank you for your quick response and information.

The 20% is for a fall that resulted in two compression fractures in my lower spine. I fell 15 - 18 feet and landed on my tailbone with pack and helmet on and carry a rifle. The impact caused me to blackout for a split second. Over the years, I have developed arthritis and have chronic constant pain in my left lower back and hip, so much I cannot sleep on my left side or stand or sit for longer than 15 - 20 minutes. The area of the compression fractures have developed into bulging and herniated disks. A civilian doctor who read the lastest MRI also stated signs of Radiography (spelling).

I had my C & P exam preformed by a P.A. who did not have my records and failed to even read my civilian doctors reports.

I would like to appeal but I am not for sure of how and what to do.

Thanks Berta, could you e-mail me at my personal e-mail at gthompsonjr1962@gmail.com ?

Thank you,


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HI KySoldier

I was exposed to 21 years of hazardous chemicals on aircraft and even Hydrazine H-70 which is a known bad carcinagen. Even our technical guidence had lots of cautions and warnings about it being a cancer causing agent. We even had to rope off the area if there was a spill from an aircraft that the sign even had the cancer warning on it. I was doused several times all of this was in my records the VA still denied my SC for Renal Clear Cell Carcinoma (RCC). Even the surgeons when they fille dout thier IMO's said I had the RCC while in service. The VA found my RCC 1 month after I retired. Duh and they still denied it, the darn RCC was there for many months. I have a NOD/DRO review in for it now going on 1 1/2 years and don't expect an answer for a few more years since they are so backed up. I'd still get it in so you get the clock started. Get good IMO's if you have an outside the VA system urologist and have them also due the DBQ for Renal issues. Ifd you have any private DR records get copies don't let the VA request them or it will hold up your claim for a while while they request them under thier duty to assist BS. If you have all your ducks in a row do a FDC with all your required paperwork and objective evidence and submit. Have a strong case and if they deny get your NOD in quick so you can get in line for the long wait. Doing a FDC is the way to go I did two and both were done in less than 110 days from start to finsh here at the Phoenix VARO with 80% awarded.

Edited by manning01 (see edit history)
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"I had my C & P exam preformed by a P.A. who did not have my records and failed to even read my civilian doctors reports."

That is a good argument for the appeal

I would like to appeal but I am not for sure of how and what to do.

I assume you mean you are appealing the 20% rating as well as filing the new claim.

If you can scan (cover name, address, C file number) and attach the reasons and bases part of the decision and the Evidence list, we can help more.

"A civilian doctor who read the lastest MRI also stated signs of Radiography (spelling). "

Does VA have these private records?

Would this doctor be willing to prepare an IMO for you? The IMO crirteria is in our IMO forum here.

I am sorry but I don't do emails on claims.

The wonderful benefit of a public web site is that even one question and one or two replies can often help MANY vets out there who might not be members and read as guests.

It amazes me how many times lurkers (guest readers) here formally join hadit to thank us for the advise we gave them,when they finally succeed..

What is the date of the decision that denied? I hope you have time left to file the NOD.

Lots of NOD info here and if we can read the VA's Reasons and Bases we can help more.

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Thanks Manning01 for the information and advice. Glad you won yours !

I forgot to add to my post about when I had my C&P for the renal cancer that the VA found in a CT scan within a month of my retirement. First of all the Dr was like 75years old and a retired internal medicine Dr that the VA contracted not a urologist. He said that my RCC was from smoking, drinking and being too fat and was not present while I was in the service even though it was found within a month of my retirement. RCC doesn't grow overnight or in a few weeks it take many months to grow. Anyways I was always under my max weight in the military 170lbs at 5'9", rarely drank and never smoked. It's in my SMR physicals etc to back up all that about me and he still wouldn't listen. So beware I noticed from other RCC denials they all tried that same angle of a accepted etiogy of smoking, obesity and alcohol to deny SC of the RCC. I guess that is how they look at us all as a bunch of fat drunks that smoke and trying to game the system to live off the gov't really sad to be profiled like that. That is why if you can afford to be be seen by an outside urologist to fill out the the DBQ do it and get an IMO from him or her if they will do one for you. Am I jaded against the VA C&P Docs sure I'am. I'll be the first to admit it since they have given me great cause to doubt thier qualifications and intentions to helps us vets.

Edited by manning01 (see edit history)
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"Am I jaded against the VA C&P Docs sure I'am. I'll be the first to admit it since they have given me great cause to doubt thier qualifications and intentions to helps us vets."

Me too. Jaded, fed up and angry when I pull out all of my old VA crapola and read many lousy C & Ps that I had to overcome.

These lousy C & P exams we get (some are too speculative and deficit from the git go or they involve a VA opiner who doesn't have any experience at all in the field of the disability they are opiningg on) are one of the biggest problems of the backlog ,as they keep claims in the appeals system ,ad finitum, knowing full well that most veterans cannot afford an IMO from a real doctor.

With VA's new idea of private care appointments, why cant they extend the C & P process to really independent C & P examiners...QTC isnt independent at all.

oh I know why.....vets might get a fair shake on their claims that way.

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Hello Berta and Manning01,

Here is what I received from the VA:

Your compensation claim was processed under the Fully Developed Claim Program.

What We Decided.

We determined that the following condition was related to your military service, so service connection has been granted:

DECISION : DDD lumbar spine (previously rated as compression fracture residuals, L1 and T12) Percent Assigned: 20% Effective Date : June 12, 2013.


+ Previous Rating Decisions, and all evidence contained therein

+ VA Form 21-0820 Report of General Information, dated June 12, 2013

+ Private treatment records, Rockcastle Regional, from June 30, 2008 through June 18, 2013

+ VA Form 21-526EZ Application for Disability Compensation and Related Compensation Benefits, dated June 28, 2013

+ VA Form 21-4138, Statement in Support of Claim, received June 28, 2013

+ Veterans Claims Assistance Act (VCAA) Letter, dated July 15, 2013

+ VCAA Notice Response, received August 21, 2013

+ VA Examination, Lexington, dated February 13, 2014


Service connection for DDD lumbar spine (previously rated as compression fracture residuals, L1 and T12).

We have assigned a 20 percent evaluation for your thoracolumbar spine based on:

+ Forward flexion of the thoracolumbar spine greater than 30 degrees but not greater than 60 degrees. (I can't even tie my shoes, they stay laced)

+ Localized Tenderness not resulting in abnormal gait or abnormal spinal contour. (I walk with a limp from the pain on my left back and hip)

+ Combined range of motion of the thoracolumbar spine greater than 120 degrees but not greater than 235 degrees

+ Intervertebral disc syndrome with no incapacitating episodes during the past 12 months (I have missed over 23 days this year because of my back)

ADDITIONAL Symptom(s) include:

+ Painful motion upon examination

+ X-ray evidence of arthritis

Here are the Radiology/Doctor's Reports -

EXAM DATE: 6/18/13

EXAMINATION: LUMBAR SPINE, 5V (Does anyone know what 5V means?)




There is progressive disc space narrowing at L3 - L4 where there was a disc herniation in MR lumbar spine 6/30/08.

Mild facet degenerative changes at L4 - L5 and L5 - S1. Probably chronic minimal loss of height at the upper end of plate of L1.


Moderately severe disc space narrowing at L3 - L4. This is where there was a disc herniation in MR lumbar spine 5 years ago.

EXAM DATE: 7/03/13




The current evaluation was correlated with recent lumbar spine x-rays 6/18/13, lumbar spine x-rays, MR 6/30/08.

As noted recently, the primary locus of disc degenerative changes is at L3 - L4. At that level, there was a herniation in June 2008.

As a result of developing facet arthropathy, from the posterior direction within the foramen on the right at L3 - L4, exacerbated by the

presence of the chronic broad-based disc protrusion, there is now right neuroforaminal stenoisis looking at sagittal image 10, compared with previous sagittal image 10. Another bulging disc at L4 - L5 is stable.

Additionally, seen at the upper margin of the image, there is a new disc protrusion at T10 - T11. This is seen in sagittal T2 weighted image 5.


No new findings within the lumbar spine. As a result of the chronic bilateral broad-based disc protrusion at L3 - L4 and the evolving facet arthropathy at that level, there is right sided foraminal stenosis of a greater degree than in the 6/30/08 MR of the lumbar spine. This is a matter of degree.

In the lower thoracic spine however, incompletely visualized in the current examination, new since 6/30/08, there is what appears to be a broad-based disc protrusion near the midline at T10 - T11.

EXAM DATE: 6/30/08




There are bilateral large herniations within the neural foramina at L3 - L4, right greater than left, associated with superior extrusions across the midline within the canal. The rest of the examination is normal.


Significant herniations with mass effect on the neural foramina, bilateral, right greater than left, at L3 - L4, in addition to left mechanically significant superior midline and bilateral paracentral extrusion at the same level with the canal. neurosurgical consulation may be beneficial.

The current evaluation is correlated with lumbar spine x-rays.

When I had my C & P exam, the first thing the P.A. said to me was, " Do you have your medical records and reports with you" ! She didn't take into consideration the chronic constant pain (7 - 8) I am in. Nor the inability to sit or stand for longer than 15 minutes at a time. I can no longer lift weights over 15 - 20 pounds. I have already missed 23 days this year.

I am lost on what I should do or what my next step is. Do I have a case In appeal ?

Edited by KySoldier (see edit history)
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You can appeal any decision, even an award letter.

Go to the VA Schedule of Ratings here and compare your current symptoms from this with the rating schedule.

Did the VA mention the DeLuca factor regarding pain in the decision?

Hadit site was not working for a few days so there was delayed responses here and a few posts were lost.

I need to remind all that we are unpaid volunteers here and most of us have a lot of additional time constraints so sometimes replies dont come fast.

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Kidney cancer is not an AO presumptive but there are a few claims at the BVA on that basis that were awared due to a very strong IMO, giving no other etiology but for AO exposure to cause the kidney cancer.

However Kidney cancer is presumptive to any Marine who was exposed to contaminated water at Camp LeJeune within the criteria below as to the dates:

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - Tuesday is the day Camp Lejeune Marines sickened by tainted water at the base for decades can begin filing claims with the Department of Veterans Affairs for compensation.


"The VA says it will pay out $2.2 billion over the next five years to people who served at Camp Lejeune for 30 consecutive days between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987. The diseases the VA says they will compensate for include:
(1) Kidney cancer
(2) Liver cancer
(3) Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
(4) Adult leukemia
(5) Multiple myeloma
(6) Parkinson's disease
(7) Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
(8) Bladder cancer

Chemicals from a dry cleaner leaked into the water people used for cooking, cleaning and all household purposes for decades, and they have been linked to these illnesses."


Edited by Berta (see edit history)
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heres the question , yes you had HBP for years before they DISCOVERED you had kidney cancer, but how are they sure a cancered kidney was not a contributing factor to your HBP.

Also you should be getting much more than 20 percent for your spinal injury.

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