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Hello all, haven't been on here in a while; have been in the "hurry up and wait" mode of filing a claim with the VA. It's been four months since I filed my latest claim. I have a rep at my local state Senators office assisting with the claim and feel like it's going in a positive direction this time. In the claims I've filed in the past, I'd have already gotten my denial letter for an increase in my SCD. I got the needed medical evidence outside the VA to submit with this claim, per instructions from the rep, that includes an MRI of my lumbar spine showing 5 ruptured discs. Another MRI of my neck, done with the VA, shows two ruptured discs with stenosis present in both the neck and lumbar spine. I also submitted my medical records from the Navy with the claim to show that "scoliosis of the spine" was spotted during my enlistment physical. I got a bit anxious to hear something about the status of my claim and contacted my rep for an update. She said the status was in "medical aspect of development". Could somebody define that phrase for me? I've never heard that one in previous claims and wondered what it meant. Thanks for any help anyone can offer.
Have you had a C & P exam yet? Was the MRI done by the VA for the C & P exam?
In one sense all claims have a 'medical aspect of development', as the VA gathers and assesses medical evidence, but it sure is an odd term to me too, coming from a vet rep.
You said this claim was denied....is the rep suggesting to file for Reconsideration based on 38 CFR 3.156 (newly discovered medical inservice records) as to the enlistment physical?
Hello Berta, the MRI was ordered by my own doctor. The VA absolutely refused to relate any of the problems I had in the Navy to a neurological problem. They did do an MRI of my neck because of so called arthritis but they won't relate that to the problems with my lumbar spine. I would usually have received an appointment notice for a C&P exam by now but have not received an appointment so far; it's been over four months since I filed the latest claim. The rep filed this as a brand new claim instead of re-opening my last claim. She did that to claim the actual diagnosis from the IMO instead of re-opening one that had no diagnosis as the VA won't come up with one. The last C&P exam I went to, there wasn't even an exam done. The doctor claimed I was there just to update my records and had some more x-rays done of my knees and hips. There's nothing wrong with them, you'd think after four years they might decide to look somewhere else to find the cause. My personal doctor tried out Gabapentin to find out if the problem was neurological and the stuff worked wonders. That's why we went ahead with the MRI of my lumbar spine since I knew the VA already has an MRI of my neck. My biggest objections with everything the VA has done is that a problem with my spine was spotted in my enlistment physical, when I had problems with my lower extremities. That wasn't taken into consideration and I ended up having to get out of the Navy because they couldn't find the problem. In four years of seeing several different doctors within the VA medical system they have done little to nothing to find the source of the problem. They will give me all kinds of drugs to treat something they can't diagnose. None of the pills helped and I finally gave up on them and decided to go my own route with an IMO. Thanks for your response Berta.
That is the best route to go at this point. We have the IMO criteria here in our IMO forum .
A good doctor with expertise in the field of your disability should also consider any secondarys as well, with a full medical rationale, that stem from the disability.
What is the actual diagnosis of the lumbar spine problems?
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