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Irritable Bowel Syndrome (Ibs) As A Presumptive Condition Denied

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scubasteveo0

Question

My claim for ervice connection for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) as a presumptive service connected disability due to my service in the Gulf War per 38 C.F.R §3.317 was denied. Wondering how I can succesfully appeal.

VA DENIAL LETTER

“ Service connection is not permitted if there is affirmative evidence that the disability was unrelated to military service in the Gulf War. Service connection for unexplained chronic multi symptom illness to include irritable bowel syndrome is denied because evidence established that this disability result from poor diet and fitness.

Your service treatment records do not contain complaints, treatment, or diagnosis for this condition. We did not find a link between your medical condition and military service. On examination, the examiner indicated that your stated symptoms do not meet the criteria for a diagnosis for irritable bowel syndrome and are most likely the result of poor dietary and fitness habits.”

SERVICE INFORMATION & MEDICAL DIAGNOSIS:
I served in Southwest Asia during Operation Iraq Freedom. My unit did participate in ground combat in Iraq.

I have been diagnosed with IBS from VA medical doctor. I currently take both RX & non-RX medication for IBS. This information was submitted in my claim but not listed as evidence considered

C&P EXAM

Examined at VA Loma Linda. Examiner is a physican assistant. Examiner did not ask about fitness or diet patterns. Blue Button says I am unable to view the exam notes.

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You need to file a NOD

VETERAN- NAME AND SSN I am filing this notice of disagreement for the claim issue IBS, which was denied on _________.

You need to address the issue that the reviewer is in error when providing an opinion your IBS is due to poor diet and fitness.

Filing IBS as a presumptive illness

Veterans discharged under conditions other than dishonorable who served in the Southwest Asia theater of military operations, which includes the areas specified in 38 CFR 3.317(e)(2), or in Afghanistan on or after September 19, 2001, may be entitled to disability compensation for certain diagnosed and undiagnosed disorders or for certain presumptive disorders, despite the fact that these disorders did not become manifest during qualifying service.

SO even if you do not have SMR's indicating you have IBS during service you can file it as a presumptive condition. Not Burn Pits. There have been none to very little success filing IBS as results of Burn Pits.

Once you identify to the VA you think is a direct result of something they find a way to shoot it down by asking you to provide a direct relationship to it.

Here is a letter BlastDaddy provided requesting service connection for IBS.

Dear Sir / Madame December 11, 2014

I am writing you to request: Entitlement to service connection for (IBS) irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea, to include as a qualifying chronic disability pursuant 38 C.F.R. 3.17

I am requesting the examiner to take into account the fact that IBS is a presumptive illness for this veteran under U.S.C. title 38 Section 1117 as passed by congress in 2001.

I am a Gulf War veteran. I have a diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I am being treated for this condition by the VA Medical Center.

The following test and treatment were perform by the VA:

Lab test (blood work): VA/ Aug 2014

Colonoscopy: VA/ Oct 2014

Lab test (blood work): VA/ Mar 2014

Stool sample: VA/ July 2014

Colonoscopy with Biopsy: Mar 2011

Surgical Pathology Report (Biopsy) Mar 2011

I am taking the following medications for IBS:

1. Psyllium Mucilloid once daily

2. Loperamide 1 tablet 4 times a day and after loose stool

3. Simethicone 1 tablet 4 times a day for gas

4.Pramoxine (for hemorrhoids caused by IBS)

The medical records reflect that I have a diagnosis of IBS. I served in Southwest Asia during the Persian Gulf War Era, and I am entitled to the application of the presumptive provisions of 38 U.S.C.A. 1117. All the legal requirements for establishing service connection for IBS are met; service connection for such disease is warranted.

Presumptive disorders will be considered to have been incurred in or aggravated by service even if there is no evidence of such disease during active service.

History of Condition:

Before and during military service up until the Gulf War I never had any problems with diarrhea. After returning from the Gulf War, I started having bouts of diarrhea that would last 1 to 3 days. I would have 12 to 15 episodes a year. I would take over the counter medicines (Imodium A-D) and the diarrhea would clear up.

In July, 2001 it was found by the VA during an exam for Gulf War that I had Irritable Bowel Syndrome w/ occasional loose stool. And that the problem existed for at least the last 8 years prior to the exam. The IBS continued to progressively get worse causing bleeding. Bloody stools have been noted in medical records July 2001, Jan 2006, June, 2009 again 2011-2014.

Request for colonoscopys has been made due to Hematochezia. Each colonoscopy results were negative except for hemorrhoids. After the last colonoscopy conducted October 16, 2014 the recommendation of surgical hemorrhoidectomy be done.

Over the past years since July 2001, the symptoms of diarrhea have become chronic. The chronic diarrhea (IBS) has impact the performance of my daily activities and interaction with my family. I am having 5 to 8 bowel movement per day. The bowel movements are predominantly diarrhea and loose (mushy) to watery stool movement with urgency after eating has cause me to loses bowel control several times in the last 6 months, when I was not able to get to the restroom in time. Due to the stomach pain and frequent trips to the restroom because of IBS, I am unable to travel or visit others due to the need to have a restroom close at hand.

Thank you for your kind consideration of my request.

Respectfully submitted

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What a douchebag PA! He basically said he thought you looked fat and lazy! Sorry for your hassles, freedomisntfree has some good advice above. You shouldn't have too much trouble refuting a PA, essentially a clerk who can give some meds. An IMO would probably be something to look into as well. Good luck!

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Did your Service Records have any entries showing IBS issues while in service?  This is sometimes annotated as gastroenteritis, acute gastroenteritis, or abbreviated as "AGE".  If you can show that you had even 1 instance of AGE while in service, that would negate what that examiner attributes to "poor diet and exercise".

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I just saw this, I had illness form chemicals and was also hospitalized with gastritis on active duty. I was also too sick to work with any chemicals any longer, jet fuel, gasoline, etc.. These and other hospitalizations and medical issues are on my active duty medical records. I spent many years begging the doctors for help telling them I was extremely sick, and was told I was mentally ill and had IBS. I developed a large mass in my intestinal area under my ribs. The doctors told me there was nothing there, After 20 years more pass by, They found a large mass on my pancreas. I went in for surgery and spent the next 6 months fighting for my life with a dying pancreas. inoperable, as they pissed away and time and hope that anything good could be done with my health and life. I was constantly denied as the years went by. I am at 60%, and have a bunch or problems including necrotizing pancreatitis, thrombosis, neurological disease, depression, and more. I finally got a BVA hearing for an 1151, and asked the judge to combine al my other claims which are in never, never land for many years. I even filed telling them that my disease is terminal and inoperable and to please speed up this long wait. They never answer to speeding that up. I even paid for an IMO for toxic chemicals to a doctor who specializes in toxic chemicals, but I have boxes of medical records and she charged $800, plus $600 per 1/2 inch or papers. it would cost a million dollars if I brought in my boxes of medical records.

 

So, as far as IBS, it's B.S./ term used to say it could be nothing or it could be the worst, IBS only means you are very sick and the doctors either can't find or are not looking properly. I gave them the exact symptoms, and they turned out to be the exact symptoms the medical community sees in pancreas disease, yet they said I was mentally ill and sent me to head doctors telling me to take mind altering drugs, because I was a drug seeker and mentally ill according to their tests. Just saying, 35 years after the first symptoms on active duty and am still waiting for a decision. 2008, 6 months in VA hospital with failed pancreas operations. Records on active duty showing illness and hospitalizations, and they still fight me. Although the BVA hearting decision maybe near. Best bet is to show medical record and show more than IBS, as IBS doesn't mean anything to them except that your suffering and the doctors are clueless. Sorry to take a dig at the VA claims people, but they don't know anything, They just rubber stamp. until proven otherwise. Wish I could take my pancreas disease put it in a needle and give it to the morons who caused me al this grief. Then they could see what it's like to wait for incompetent people to deny, deny until you die, to the same people whop do the denying.

 

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The crazy one here, all I can add is like most I was denied IBS and I filed within one year of my discharge. VA screwed my claim up to the point where I had to appeal. The real crazy thing is for about eight months while I was on active duty, I was between quarters and being hospitalized.  That is totally unheard of but yet VA in their wisdom denied my claim. I was finally service connected for IBS but we all get frustrated and say that VA does not know what they are doing and that their (VA) employees are inept and incompetent but I am beginning to realized that VA has been doing this for years and even though they (VA) get new personnel in, I think they are trained to deny claims. There is no other way that veterans can be denied on such a high rate. There is no other way to explain it but VA is not veterans friendly. Sorry that you guys are going through this but never give up.

Keep on fighting.

Edited by pete992
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