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tk3000

Obesity and Sleep Apnea Concurrently

Question


 

Over the years, I gained weight which I attribute at large to my physical disabilities (left leg with hardware) and ongoing pain which makes exercising more difficult, currently my BMI is of 32.6 which is classified as obese. There has been cases within the VA whereby mental healhty issues have been grounds for a successful obesity claim, and one also have mental healty issues so this is another ground for the same claim of obesity (the rational being that depressive disorder would increase ones food intake). But it seems to me that the physical disability issues are a stronger case. Anyhow, both disabilities make for an even strong claim of obesity. I am not sure how a claim of obesity is adjudicated at the VA, but I am not morbid obesity by any means.

 

Nonethless, my claim for obesity is a door for another claim; claim for sleep apnea. Recently I was diagnosed with sleep apnea through a sleep study, I have had the same study done in 2011 whence I was more fit and the result was negative but this time around the result indicated a diagnosed of sleep apnea with need of a respirator in order to sleep.

So both the obesity claim and that of sleep apnea would have to be concurrent, and the later dependent on the second.

 

The following are some of the arguments I plan on adding to my claim:

 

Establishing service connection generally requires competent evidence of three things: (1) a current disability; (2) in-service incurrence or aggravation of a disease or injury; and (3) a causal relationship, i.e., a nexus, between the claimed in-service disease or injury and the current disability. Holton v. Shinseki, 557 F.3d 1362, 1366 (Fed. Cir. 2009); 38 C.F.R. § 3.303(a). In this particular case the third criteria applies since there is a nexus between the veterans physical disabilities (physical limitations and pain plus depressive disorder) and his obesity and henceforth the development of sleep apnea.

Therefore sleep apnea is proximately due to the veterans obesity disorder ( greatest risk factor for sleep apnea) which in different degrees of causality is a consequence to the following veterans established service connected disabilities: mainly left leg physical condition with pain which hinders physical exercise more difficult and depressive and anxiety disorder which increases one food intake (Obstructive sleep apnea and other symptoms of OSA are associated with probable major depression, regardless of factors like weight, age, sex or race, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.).

-------

Does that sounds like a sound and quick claim to through even the notoriously dynfunctional VA claiming process? 

 

Edited by tk3000

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7 minutes ago, Gastone said:

Per VA Reg, you won't automatically be made Scheduler 100% because of this "New Award." The Rater has to determine if using this New SA 50% SC, combined with one or more of your other Non-IU Issues would have a separate CSC of 60%, making you eligible for SMC S (Housebound) additional $34?.00 per mos. If that were the case, your IU Rating gives you the largest Comp amount and would continue.

But according to the VA math that would put my overall rating above 95% which would translate to 100% schedular. Besides, I am already eligible to SMC, I receive it every month.

 

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VA has diagnosed me with apnea and I forget the exact name but it means you fall asleep without warning and can't seem to wake up normally.  Now I am SC for DMII and I have sensory neuropathy in my feet and hands. I am also SC for depression and a host of other MH conditions.  Exercising can be might hard to do when I keep falling asleep and waking up not knowing what has happened.  Is there a chance of my getting service connected for OSA.  The thing that really worries me is falling asleep and not waking up at all.  I don't mean to butt in to your thread, but the obesity and the OSA claim seem to be up my alley.  I am rated 90% TDIU P&T and HB (S).  You know most doctors believe it is not exercise but your calorie intake that leads to obesity.  I wonder if there are studies that show that depression and DMII lead to intake of carbs and sugar that lead to obesity that lead to OSA.   It seems to me from what I have read that DMII, depression, and PTSD can lead to weight gain and thus to OSA. 

 

                         John

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6 hours ago, john999 said:

VA has diagnosed me with apnea and I forget the exact name but it means you fall asleep without warning and can't seem to wake up normally.  Now I am SC for DMII and I have sensory neuropathy in my feet and hands. I am also SC for depression and a host of other MH conditions.  Exercising can be might hard to do when I keep falling asleep and waking up not knowing what has happened.  Is there a chance of my getting service connected for OSA.  The thing that really worries me is falling asleep and not waking up at all.  I don't mean to butt in to your thread, but the obesity and the OSA claim seem to be up my alley.  I am rated 90% TDIU P&T and HB (S).  You know most doctors believe it is not exercise but your calorie intake that leads to obesity.  I wonder if there are studies that show that depression and DMII lead to intake of carbs and sugar that lead to obesity that lead to OSA.   It seems to me from what I have read that DMII, depression, and PTSD can lead to weight gain and thus to OSA. 

 

                         John

I also happened to have neuropathy in my left foot which is a lack of sensorial body part and I believe that is what gives me the extra SMC compensation. You should have SMC too I assume. 

Yeah, it seems that sleep apnea itself and the plethora of other conditions you have would have an impact on you gaining weight, and thus also contributing to sleep apnea  in a sort of vicious cycle since sleep apnea itself can cause fatigue  (the machine is supposed to help with the fatigue caused by sleep apnea). You have been diagnosed and are service connected for depression and PTSD which are known to cause obesity. I believe that these conditions combined could conjure up a good case of obesity causing sleep apnea, but I doubt the RO would give it to you; it is a case for BVA to decide -- likely favorably. There is an actual case that was decided at BVA level for a veteran whose claim was that depression would lead to overeating which would then lead to obesity and consequently sleep apnea. I know that the BVA is not an independent court and does create precedent of ruling per say, but it is a strong case on your side and shows the likelihood of a positive outcome.  

Sure enough, calories intake, genetic predisposition, aging all cause obesity but physical exercise is probably the main tool to combat obesity. 

Make sure you always sleep with CPAP machine, the machine should help you have a good night sleep and wake up refreshed and reinvigorated; and most importantly, it could also save our lives. 

John, thanks for reviving the thread, soon this thread will be old and abandoned and maybe someone will necro-bump it.

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I'm just saying that it's not an automatic change from IU to Scheduler. The Rater has to consider which Rating avails you of the greatest Award. In your case, I think it's the IU with SMC S.

If you're currently IU and SMC S, in order to continue the SMC S with a Scheduler 100% CSC, you have to have (1) ONE SC that is Rated as 100% by itself, with the additional SC's have a separate CSC of 60%.

Correct me if I'm wrong, you neither currently have, nor are you in line for a single New SC Rated by itself as 100%.

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12 hours ago, Gastone said:

I'm just saying that it's not an automatic change from IU to Scheduler. The Rater has to consider which Rating avails you of the greatest Award. In your case, I think it's the IU with SMC S.

If you're currently IU and SMC S, in order to continue the SMC S with a Scheduler 100% CSC, you have to have (1) ONE SC that is Rated as 100% by itself, with the additional SC's have a separate CSC of 60%.

Correct me if I'm wrong, you neither currently have, nor are you in line for a single New SC Rated by itself as 100%.

I read somewhere that ones  primary or originated condition would be the main condition, in my case it is the left leg condition from which other conditions are related. For instance my MH condtion (which is rated at 70%) is mostly attribute to my left leg condition (pain and difficult of mobility). But, then, I also read somewhere that the condition with higher rating is considered the main condition which seems to be the correct one. I understand how the VA math works, the whole body theory and how the main condition can precede the other conditions that it ties together: after 70% disability, there would 30% of a whole body which the other conditions would affect, etc. But what are the odds that any rater would give anything but schedular 100%?

Besides the MH rated at 70%, I don't have any condition above 30% so the SMC comes from the fact that I have peripheral neuropathy on my left foot rated at 20%. The neuropathy would be considered a loss of a sensorial part of the body and thus would grant me the SMC.

thanks

 

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