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Va Clinic Diagnoses Ptsd On It's Own

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Mountain Vet

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So.. I am new to posting here but a long time reader of this site - awesome work moderators and subject matter experts .. your efforts are much appreciated.

I had a routine VA medical appointment for a general health check up in early April of this year and during that exam the doctor and I got to talking about my prior service. I mentioned to him a few things (I don't talk about my military history much with anyone) about my middle east service including intrusive dreams for years about a bomb attacks including a bomb (IED-timer) that destroyed my vehicle (unoccupied) and came pretty close to taking me out. He probed further and after answering his questions openly and honestly he referred me to the VA mental health team for evaluation.

Now I have a VA medical diagnosis of PTSD secondary to my military service and a diagnosis of depressive disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder on top of that. I am prescribed anti depressants from the VA and am taking them. I am participating in group and individual therapy with a goal of diminishing my symptoms which quite honestly I have lived with seemingly forever. The VA psycologist and pychiatrist have both documented the diagnosis and nexus to my military service in my VA medical records and file. Both encouraged me to go see my VSO. I feel a bit like a dumb ass for living with these syptoms for many years and not considering my options. It surprises me that the doctors did all of this without any encouragement from me - Frankly I wasn't even looking for an increase in my disability (20%) benefits.

I gathered up some buddy letters from veterans who were there and had personal knowlege and put together a binder of news articles and related military service records along with the medical stuff I have so far. I consulted with my VSO who copied my entire binder and immediately filed a claim (fast track).

Some of the issues I have suffered with for many years include; sleep deprivation (nightmares, night sweats, insomnia); social isolation (few trusted friends, estrangement from family, avoidance of middle eastern people; hyper vigilance (chair/back against the wall always, forever alert, suspicious of damn near everything and everyone); little to no outside activities increasing over the years; anger outbursts,

agitation and impatience among others.

I am a work-a-holic often burying myself in my work and was a high achiever until my memory started to fail (mostly short term - forgetting names, dates, appointments etc).

Having given that background does anyone think I can get rated for the issues I didn't ask for to begin with? Any other similar experiences having the VA push a PTSD diagnosis on a patient during a routine exam? Any help is much appreciated.

MV

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The real question is do you want to start a PTSD claim, and if it's awarded, deal with the possible ramifications.

Fiduciary appointment by the VA

Brady Law gun ownership problem.

Possible employment problems in certain professions.

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The real question is do you want to start a PTSD claim, and if it's awarded, deal with the possible ramifications.

Fiduciary appointment by the VA

Brady Law gun ownership problem.

Possible employment problems in certain professions.

Is this your guidance seriously..?

What I want is to get better.. plan and simple. The rest of your concerns, while appreciated if your not being facetious, are of no consequence to me. No one is going to assume fiduciary responsibilty for me (I'm not that far gone), I don't care about the gun thing (Brady Law et al) and I am getting close to social security age in a federal appointment so I'm not concerned about employment problems.

I have to say that this is the first time I think I've seen a subject matter expert try to disuade a fellow veteran from getting help.. interesting perspective.

Thanx,

MV

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So.. I am new to posting here but a long time reader of this site - awesome work moderators and subject matter experts .. your efforts are much appreciated.

I had a routine VA medical appointment for a general health check up in early April of this year and during that exam the doctor and I got to talking about my prior service. I mentioned to him a few things (I don't talk about my military history much with anyone) about my middle east service including intrusive dreams for years about a bomb attacks including a bomb (IED-timer) that destroyed my vehicle (unoccupied) and came pretty close to taking me out. He probed further and after answering his questions openly and honestly he referred me to the VA mental health team for evaluation.

Now I have a VA medical diagnosis of PTSD secondary to my military service and a diagnosis of depressive disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder on top of that. I am prescribed anti depressants from the VA and am taking them. I am participating in group and individual therapy with a goal of diminishing my symptoms which quite honestly I have lived with seemingly forever. The VA psycologist and pychiatrist have both documented the diagnosis and nexus to my military service in my VA medical records and file. Both encouraged me to go see my VSO. I feel a bit like a dumb ass for living with these syptoms for many years and not considering my options. It surprises me that the doctors did all of this without any encouragement from me - Frankly I wasn't even looking for an increase in my disability (20%) benefits.

I gathered up some buddy letters from veterans who were there and had personal knowlege and put together a binder of news articles and related military service records along with the medical stuff I have so far. I consulted with my VSO who copied my entire binder and immediately filed a claim (fast track).

Some of the issues I have suffered with for many years include; sleep deprivation (nightmares, night sweats, insomnia); social isolation (few trusted friends, estrangement from family, avoidance of middle eastern people; hyper vigilance (chair/back against the wall always, forever alert, suspicious of damn near everything and everyone); little to no outside activities increasing over the years; anger outbursts,

agitation and impatience among others.

I am a work-a-holic often burying myself in my work and was a high achiever until my memory started to fail (mostly short term - forgetting names, dates, appointments etc).

Having given that background does anyone think I can get rated for the issues I didn't ask for to begin with? Any other similar experiences having the VA push a PTSD diagnosis on a patient during a routine exam? Any help is much appreciated.

MV

I say go for broke. I only just begun my MH healing/treatment journey, as I've had my initial MH eval/consult just last week. I have many markers and byproducts of ptsd/and or MDD. As far as gunownership is concerned, that more so goes with being a danger to society, if you are deemed mentally unstable, or something of that nature. I don't believe it's an automatic thing. At my eval, the doc told me that they only have to report(mandatory) if they feel you are in immediate danger of suicide or homicide.

I would think that you should go through your SMR for records coinsiding with your incident and put together a claim package for the PTSD. I'm sure you are a solid 50% rating easy. And maybe 70%. At the bare minimum you will end up right where you are...20%.

Semper Fi.

Andy

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The real question is do you want to start a PTSD claim, and if it's awarded, deal with the possible ramifications.

Fiduciary appointment by the VA

Brady Law gun ownership problem.

Possible employment problems in certain professions.

It does happen but i havent seen that many cases except when violence is common and has resulted in LE intervention that gun ownership is lost. That being said, it doesnt mean that it cant happen in the future that some incident results in anyone with any history of mental illness is barred from ownership and seems to be a "common sense" measure that is being pushed by those who support it. i feel that MH is a tricky subject, one can have PTSD without being a danger to anyone, same goes for depression, etc. and should be taken on a case by case basis. But as Mountain Vet has stated he doesnt care about it.

Some of the issues I have suffered with for many years include; sleep deprivation (nightmares, night sweats, insomnia); social isolation (few trusted friends, estrangement from family, avoidance of middle eastern people; hyper vigilance (chair/back against the wall always, forever alert, suspicious of damn near everything and everyone); little to no outside activities increasing over the years; anger outbursts,

agitation and impatience among others.

I am a work-a-holic often burying myself in my work and was a high achiever until my memory started to fail (mostly short term - forgetting names, dates, appointments etc).

Having given that background does anyone think I can get rated for the issues I didn't ask for to begin with? Any other similar experiences having the VA push a PTSD diagnosis on a patient during a routine exam? Any help is much appreciated.

MV

It doesnt matter whether you have asked a rating in the past on this or not. if you have the diagnosis and you have the evidence and have the issue you can file a claim for it now regardless if you got out a year ago of 50.

Sounds like you have ample evidence to file a claim since the VA has done good work in diagnosing and treating you so far.

If you want to get rated do it right. Sounds like you have insurance. So start going to a private psych as well, get that documented. go and get a Independent medical opinion/exam and get that (Pm me for a name if you want it).

Get all of that as well as copies of your VA treatment records and get it all together. upload it to your claim on ebenefits, mail it certified/return receipt, etc.

Submit the claim as Fully Developed and get rated for it.

Its better to be rated than not be rated.

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Go for it. Do you have any combat medals? If not don't forget to submit your 0781. Any campaign specific medals? Those will get you a ptsd initial. Having a dx PTSD thru VAMC will help But the criteria is a little different in a CnP you can't still walk out of the ptsd initial w/o a dx.

You dont automatically get assigned a fiduciary bc you are connected for PTSD. There's a box regarding handling your finances on the exam if it's checked yes than the VA can start the pre determination process in declaring you incompetent

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I will chime in if only to advise to be careful. Im in a similar situation myself. Key points to consider, the main one is to get help, personally, i don't trust VA docs but I am 0 for 4 in that respect. Secondly you only get rated for the predominant mental ailment no matter if there one, two, or two dozen. However, they are supposed to rate as close as possible to the main cause if not discernible then they are to code and rate to a similar or as close as possible to the rendered diagnosis'

With the fiduciary business, I can't advise to go along with that. JMO. From my experience so far the VA is not out to help the Vet in its entirety, hence the appeals, and all the bad press of VA's shenanigans. For the credit I do give the VA for what positive they can do the earlier will not change. Those are just facts. Look at their track record and I'll rest my case on the numbers.

I'll advise to stand your ground on getting treated, that by far is the most important. But please consider all the ramifications of the course you take regarding claims. If you are deemed a danger to yourself or the general public I am not sure that would be in your best interest. The VA has been known to do this, and they will if the opportunity presents itself.

JMO, even if twisted a bit.

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