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For People Who Writes Their Own Letter Of Evidence Or This May Just Help You...

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For the past couple of years my mind has been in what I am calling a "smoke cloud". I couldn't remember anything and I couldn't do much writing because I didn't have any will power because of the pain I have to deal with. Anyway I have been dealing with memory issues due to chronic pain and of course these medications I take. Finally after about 10-15 trips to the Emergency Room due to heart rates rising to 180+ some I, not my VA MD, but I found out it was caused by the Elavil/Amitriptyline. Along with the Tachycardia I had to deal with, I had dry mouth all the time and I would get severly dehydrated even if I didn't go outside. Finally, after talking with the ER MD he suggested I quit taking the Elavil and boom there has been this "smoke cloud" that has lifted off of my mind. I sent my VA PCP a secured message (BTW I ALWAYS send secured messages to get it all down on paper) and I told him about the Elavil. He comes back and says things like its prescribed to younger men like myself, blah, blah, blah. I'm 46 years old and I'm not a young man. Some of you older folks may say so but if you look at the life expectency of human beings I am approx 16 years beyond the halfway point in my life. So, I am not a young man if you look at it like I do. LOL

Anyway, I wanted to share this for people, who like me, has memory issues. For the past year I could NOT write my Letter of Evidence because I could NOT remember a legal name of something that is very important for my case. I have TWO NODs at the RO level for De Novo Review. These two NODs should actually be combined together because on one NOD I have a contention of Right Leg Radiculopathy secondary to my Lumbar spine and on the second NOD I have Left Leg Radiuclopathy secondary to my Lumbar Spine. Below is an example I found on the BVA search. Its funny how just out of the blue I remembered the name of the legal phrase I've been trying to remember for the past couple of years.

The Court has held that when a determination on one issue 
could have a significant impact on the outcome of another 
issue, such issues are considered inextricably intertwined 
and VA is required to decide those issues together. Harris v. 
Derwinski, 1 Vet. App. 180 (1991). 

As an example and to understand why inextricably intertwine is important read an excerpt I found of a case from the BVA website:

The claim of entitlement to a TDIU requires consideration of the effect on 
employability of all service-connected disabilities.  The 
determination regarding the remanded issues could impact the 
veteran's TDIU claim. The Board therefore finds these issues 
to be inextricably intertwined.  Thus, adjudication of the 
TDIU claim will be held in abeyance pending further 
development of the veteran's claims.

Of anybody has multiple claims or current NODs really read over your contentions. Inextricably intertwined can be helpful if you do have multiple NODs and the contentions in those NODs can affect each other on a decision. For me, as part of my letter of evidence I am respectfullly requestion that both NODs with all contentions be inextricably intertwined per Harris v. Derwinski.

I just felt on writing this to maybe help others so I am now going back to writing up my Letter of Evidence. I can tell you the St Pete RO raters are something else. Example: I filed a claim for BILATERAL Sciatica. The RO changed this claim to Right Leg only. This is ILLEGAL, period. They are NOT and cannot changed any claims that are legally written. Anyway they come back and say something to the affect of "There is no new evidence from the Tampa VA to reopen this claim" blah, blah, blah. Now this is how bad they are. The original claims were decided in 2012 and around June 2013. I had an EMG in October 2013 which reported BILATERAL L5-S1 Radiculopathy in my legs. Then in November 2013 Tampa VA Pain Management Neurologist also diagnosed the same thing after he did a FULL exam. The exam was more detailed than any C&P exam I have ever had with the VA which is another debate for another time. Anyway, these raters are really, really bad.

Anyway I hope this helps other people in their writings and NODs.

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