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Secondary SA to PTSD- Approved but...



I have been diagnosed with PTSD and rated at 70%.  Recently Sleep Apnea was approved as a secondary condition.  BUT there was no rating increase.

The decision states -"We have assigned a 50 percent evaluation for SA" . I do use a CPAP machine.  But then it states - "An aggravated evaluation of 0 percent is assigned.  When added with the pre-exisiting  50 percent, this disability meets the criteria for the 50 percent evaluation".

Can anyone decode this?  What is the pre-exisiting 50 percent? My PTSD is rated at 70 percent two years ago.






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Good question.  I think I will take a guess.  Its about the word "aggravation".  

If I get this correctly, here is the way it works.  

Lets say you have "condition A" before entering service.  

When you exit service, lets say condition A got worse (was aggravated by service) by a factor of 2.  In other words, your conditions got TWICE as bad after service as they were prior to service.  


The VA then evaluates your condition at 60%.  Only half of that 60 percent is attributed to service, you already had condition A prior to service, so the VA would accept responsibility for half of it.  

My advice is to file a NOD disputing this.  

First, check your entrance into service records.  Did your entrance exam show you had sleep apnea (or PTSD)?  If not then its not "aggravation", but FULLY related to service.  

Next, if you were diagnosed with PTSD or sleep apnea prior to service, then argue that it increased MORE due to service.  

VA is saying, "Yea we acknowledge its service connected, but all of your symptoms are from prior to service..and none of this was after service."   You want to show how that is inaccurate, with medical evidence.  

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I  appreciate you translating the government lingo.  I had no prior conditions prior to service.  I will file a NOD.



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