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Denied Ptsd~Have A Diagnosis From A Vet Center Psychologist!

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jereljenkins

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Hi

I am new to this forum and would like your opinion. I am the spouse of an Army Veteran. Jerel, was honorably discharged in 2005. He spent 19 months in Iraq. He dealt with several stressors including a vehicle in front of him running over a live bomb and 17 of 19 were killed, having to pick up bodies after the UN Bombing, being fearful every single time he had to travel while there, and while traveling an iraqi girl and her father were standing on side of road while Jerel's unit was traveling. The little girl waved at Jerel and he waved back. The little girl then threw something and in a flash, he thought his life was over. It turned out to be a fish, but when she threw it he had no idea what it was. Jerel's job was a fueler.

In April 2012, I helped him file a claim for PTSD, Back Pain, Tinnititus, Bilateral Foot Rash(both) and Bilateral Hand Rash(both). He had began seeing a VA therapist at a Vet Center near our home. He was diagnosed with PTSD. He did not get his treatment summary until January 2014. His therapist felt he needed more appointments before she wrote the diagnosis down. Because the VA didn't receive the diagnosis, they sent him to several contracted appointments. They were for Back, hands, feet and PTSD.

Let me tell you, the PTSD appointment was horrible. We filled out all the paperwork and answered all the questions before he got there. The appointment lasted less than 10 minutes. The psychiatrist response to Jerel was always this statement "that doesn't mean you have PTSD". In the denial letter, it seems as if she twisted everything we answered on the forms and turned it into her own answers. Jerel, at one point in time, smoked marijuana to deal with his PTSD issues. He quit smoking in June 2009. This contracted appointment was in August 2013. She diagnosed him with "cannabis abuse in early remission" on 2/20/2015. I did my research. For a patient to be diagnosed with "abuse in early remission" the patient had to have quit the abuse within the last 12 months. Jerel had been sober for 4 years at the time of the appointment. I think she read the question on the forms we filled out that asked if he ever smoked marijuana and then came to her own conclusions. I appealed the decision this past week. Has anyone ever dealt with this type of behavior from a VA Contracted therapist and if so, what was done to fix it?

Jerel now has no trust at all in the system and he quit going to therapy. He has a hard time. Horrible dreams about things he saw in Iraq, lashing out at me and the kids, paranoid, feelings of fear, punching holes in walls and an unhealthy obsession of viewing Iraqi streets on GoogleMaps.

Also, he was given 10% rating for hearing. 0% for bilateral foot rash but denied for the hand rash. This denial confuses me as well. The hand and foot rash came from the same source. So how can they say "okay your rash on your foot is service related but we are denying the hand rash claim"

I am no professional, so please have patience with me. I wrote a notice of disagreement and would like your opinion without anyone making me feel bad. If anyone would like to see it, please let me know.

What do you think of the PTSD claim? Do you think we can get the diagnosis of cannabis abuse in early remission thrown out being that he is clearly pass the 12 month in remission stage? Do you think the fact that the therapist was not professional can play a role in the VA approving his request? The fact that he has a diagnosis dated AFTER the Contracted diagnosis should be considered.

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Can you possibly scan and attach here ( cover C file #,name, address, )the part of the denial he received that has the Reasons and Bases for the PTSD denial (and the Evidence List)

Many many combat vets from all of our past wars have had alcohol and drug abuse problems, that were manifestations of their PTSD. I am surprised the examiner made an issue of that.

Can you also do the same with the NOD you wrote and attach here?

This statement concerns me:

"The psychiatrist response to Jerel was always this statement "that doesn't mean you have PTSD". In the denial letter, it seems as if she twisted everything we answered on the forms and turned it into her own answers."

"Jerel now has no trust at all in the system and he quit going to therapy."

In my opinion that will NOT help his claim ,but worse yet it will not help him.

I am the surviving spouse of a PTSD vet and I know it will not help you either ,unless he continues therapy.

We are not here to make anyone feel bad at all by reviewing NODs or responses to VA BS,

The whole claims process is overwhelming for any vet just getting into it. There are templates to NODs here but if we can read it, we can help to word it, if we feel it needs change.

Does he have the CAR or CIB on his DD 214?

Has VA questioned his stressor at all?

Can he obtain proof of the stressor via buddy statements or unit morning reports if he needs to?


"His therapist felt he needed more appointments before she wrote the diagnosis down. Because the VA didn't receive the diagnosis, they sent him to several contracted appointments. They were for Back, hands, feet and PTSD. "

" He had began seeing a VA therapist at a Vet Center near our home. He was diagnosed with PTSD. He did not get his treatment summary until January 2014. His therapist felt he needed more appointments before she wrote the diagnosis down."
I was a vet center volunteer in the PTSD Combat group. How many sessions did he have with the therapist one to one so far?
Was this therapist a MSW or a psychologist? Are you sure of their credentials

I assume he is not on any PTSD medication,

It can take time ,in my opinion, in some cases for any MH provider to be able to fully assess a MH disability...however the VA can give combat vets the MMPI=2, and many other tests that rule in or out PTSD. Has he had any testing at all such as the MMPI-2 (Combat related)?

There is a link in this post to the new PTSD regulations ( as of 2010) and also to stressors , as defined by the VA,



Your husband is not the only combat vet who has had his PTSD claim denied. It is always possible VA would grant a different type of MH disability ,if he claims MDD or generalized anxiety disorder because that would open the door for an independent medical opinion, if that type of claim is denied.

You husband needs to obtain a copy of the actual QTC C & P exam as well, as we need to read it here.

Please cover his C file number, name, address etc prior to scanning anything you attach.






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Hello, first and foremost, thanking your husband for his service, and you for your service to a veterans (spouse) , it commendable. I read your post and I agree with Berta's respond, (Ms. Berta was extremely helpful and critical to my favorable decision with PTSD and other Gulf War contingencies). As I read on, this also does not make to much sense to me either. If I may add, have you requested your husbands C-file and official deck logs or documented (official) military records of his whereabouts and his connections to the incidents. When I first submitted a claim, it was denied several times, even though I was in combat both in land and sea in the Gulf War. I also received 10% SC for a residual scar that was obtained by smashing my head on duty to a call for general quarters. So, even though there was an injury, either physical or mental, it seems that the burden of obtaining records, and a solid stressor letter is on the veteran, in my opinion. Once I received all of my medical records and finally wrote a solid stressor letter, with copies of buddy letters, my claim took a major turn around. Of course, I cant say that will happen to your husbands claim but I learned several things. One, is not to rely on the rater to gather all the informant. Secondly, the more compelling evidence you have with dates of the incident, the whereabouts of your husband connecting him to the incident, and the results of the incident, is critical in my opinion. I also added CFR's to alert the rater that it meet some type of regulation, even though they might know, it is nice to have them (VA) know, that you are also knowledgable of the contingencies and the laws around the what your husband is claiming. Another thing that I was learned because of this wonderful forum, was that I emailed (fax, mailed) the SECVA and other politicians, and even the director of the Waco Regional Office explaining the issues. I am not to familiar with medicinal cannibus, but I hope that this helps. I was told year ago that I was in good hand in Hadit, even though I was not promised miracles, it was still refreshing to lightly and respectfully vent and ask for opinions. Keep posing..... and good luck, God bless and God speed.

josef7070

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I do not have access to my scanner right now but I have the files in my hand. I will take pics of portions of it and attach it here.(if that works)

Also, thanks for your replies. I made him an appointment with a civilian psychiatrist. His Va therapist at the Vet Center is a Ph.D., LMFT

I do have his C&P exam notes and its several inconsistencies from that and the decision letter.

He began going to the Vet center in 2012. He had over 10 appointments. Going weekly, then monthly, then our son had to have emergency brain surgery so he had to stop going for a while. From June thru dec he didn't go. He resumed treatment in January 2013. I also had meningitist in September 2012 so that is also a reason he took such a long break. His therapist was concerned of suicidal thoughts so she wanted him to continue before she released info to VA.

He only say the QTC examiner once for less than 10 minutes. Im going to take the pics of the treatment summary from the QTC exam, the decision letter and the letter from his vet center therapist now

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Josef7070, that was GREAT advice!

This is so true:

"So, even though there was an injury, either physical or mental, it seems that the burden of obtaining records, and a solid stressor letter is on the veteran, in my opinion. Once I received all of my medical records and finally wrote a solid stressor letter, with copies of buddy letters, my claim took a major turn around."

And with physical inservice injuries, there is nothing better then highlighting copies of the SMRs entries, and even the discharge certificate,in some cases, and sending that to the VA to prove the inservice nexus.

I know the neither the raters nor the C & P docs take the time to really search SMRs and I also know that they often say they will get JSRRC to verify stressors, but often (per BVA remands) never even attempt to do that.

Something is definitely lacking in this veteran's situation above....

It might well be that the C & P can be challenged as being too speculative and maybe by then the vet center psychologist will be able to make a formal PTSD diagnosis.

I was surprised that the vet center even had an inhouse psychologist because where I worked, we called our team leader Doc, but he was a former Corpsman and also a MSW but not a shrink. All of the shrinks were at the Lyons NJ , that we were under the auspices of.

The C & P might even contain an alternative diagnosis that could be SCed.

EVen it was done by QWTC and not at a VAMC, since they denied, the veteran can obtain a copy of it.

jereljenkins wife....is your husband registered at ebenefits?

Question to all....do QTC exams show up as downloadable on ebenefits or does this vet have to request a copy of that from the RO?

Actual copies of C & P exams are invaluable to have.

That way you can tell if the VA manipulated the actual wording of the exam.

They pulled that BS on my long ago ( that got fixed years ago and then recently about a month ago my RO did it again and I raised so much hell they completely reversed their bogus C & P opinion.and the denial turned into an award.

But this is a different situation......

That is why we need to see the VA's actual lingo to actually help your husband fight their War of the Words.

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Just set him up to get back into therapy. His appointment is the 23rd of this month. He did have ptsd testing. The first test was Iraq/Afghan Post-Deployment Screening which he tested positive for.

a PHQ-2 Screening was positive for depression. Alcohol screening test was negative. But a PCL-C test says he tested negative for ptsd.

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