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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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Sp4Ret

I need a "sympathetic" Orthopedic Dr. for a claim appeal

Question

I was wounded in "Nam, and lost all the toes on my left foot. I have a 40% SC disability, and because of 48 years of walking with an altered gait due to the foot injury, I have developed an arthritic hip. My claim was denied because the VA said there is no service connection with the hip. I can't get a Dr. to sign the D&B form stating that the hip issue is related to the foot. Can anyone help me with an orthopedic Dr. who is willing to fill out the VA form. Several have said that it "probably is related, but none are wiling to state it on the form.

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You have 3 choices:

1.  Keep searching until you find (a sympathetic VA doc) who will give you the opinion you need (at no cost to you).    You could try focusing on the doctors who said its "probably" related to service.  Unfortunately "probably", "might be" "may be" are considered speculative.  You need to ask the "probably" doctor if he would restate that in the format VA wants to hear:  "The VEterans arthritic condition is "at least as likely as not" due to the toe issues in service.   If you ask the doctor, then he may restate this in a format VA will accept.  

2.  Hire an IMO/IME doc to do the same.  This option will cost you money, but it will likely be worth it.

3.  Do nothing and you wont get your benefits.    

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Dont fight the DBQ. You need a podiatrist or an orthopadic specialist to state that the gait alteration puts stress on your knee and hip joints. This will get your secondary connection. As long as they put it into your medical record and you claim its your gait, the RO should roll over for you. Alternatively, the IMO is the best shot. Let the VA do their DBQ's. I think if I got one filled out, they probably would have another one done, so its the hind tit on the boar so to speak. The real jist of the issue is that opinion like broncovet stated above.

 

If you have resources, research the effects of altered gait on hip and knee joints. Present several papers stating as a matter of scientific study that altered gait increases stress on knee and hip joint. Your own statement behind that is also a powerful weight, describe how the problem developed and why you think it is related. Lay statements must be considered, just dont talk like a Doctor :-).

https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C10&q=+effects+of+altered+gait+on+hip+and+knee+joints&btnG=

 

Edited by pwrslm

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On 10/13/2018 at 12:45 AM, pwrslm said:

Dont fight the DBQ. You need a podiatrist or an orthopadic specialist to state that the gait alteration puts stress on your knee and hip joints. This will get your secondary connection. As long as they put it into your medical record and you claim its your gait, the RO should roll over for you. Alternatively, the IMO is the best shot. Let the VA do their DBQ's. I think if I got one filled out, they probably would have another one done, so its the hind tit on the boar so to speak. The real jist of the issue is that opinion like broncovet stated above.

 

If you have resources, research the effects of altered gait on hip and knee joints. Present several papers stating as a matter of scientific study that altered gait increases stress on knee and hip joint. Your own statement behind that is also a powerful weight, describe how the problem developed and why you think it is related. Lay statements must be considered, just dont talk like a Doctor :-).

https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C10&q=+effects+of+altered+gait+on+hip+and+knee+joints&btnG=

 

 

On 10/12/2018 at 9:02 PM, broncovet said:

You have 3 choices:

1.  Keep searching until you find (a sympathetic VA doc) who will give you the opinion you need (at no cost to you).    You could try focusing on the doctors who said its "probably" related to service.  Unfortunately "probably", "might be" "may be" are considered speculative.  You need to ask the "probably" doctor if he would restate that in the format VA wants to hear:  "The VEterans arthritic condition is "at least as likely as not" due to the toe issues in service.   If you ask the doctor, then he may restate this in a format VA will accept.  

2.  Hire an IMO/IME doc to do the same.  This option will cost you money, but it will likely be worth it.

3.  Do nothing and you wont get your benefits.    

Thanks for the input, broncovet,  but I need some clarification What is IMO/IME doc? Also, I've had several VA docs examine me, and none will step up and admit there is a service connection

Also, pwrslm I downloaded some good info from a few websites. thanks for the input.

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An "IMO" is when you pay for a private doctors "Independent medical opininon".  

An IME is when you pay a private doc for an Independent Medical Examination.   

The former need not be in person, while an IME doc would need to examine you.  

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