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Secondary claim connectivity


Kevin Viola
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Question

I have a service connected disability (total left knee replacement 30%), this disability dates back several decades. The condition caused lateral instability in my left leg all of my post injury life.  I am presently diagnosed with severe foraminal stenosis of several lumbar discs on one side (right) causing severe pain in lower back and radiating down my right leg. There is also a degenerative scoliosis of the lumbar spin (convex toward the left side).  I will be seeking orthopedic and neurologist advice on how to treat this.  The orthopedic surgeon that performed my knee replacement suggested that the knee instability was the cause of my spine deformation (which was not as pronounced at that time).

My question is: how difficult is it to establish connectivity of a secondary claim (the spine problems) to the already service connected knee disability?? 

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On 3/5/2020 at 9:29 AM, Kevin Viola said:

I have a service connected disability (total left knee replacement 30%), this disability dates back several decades. The condition caused lateral instability in my left leg all of my post injury life.  I am presently diagnosed with severe foraminal stenosis of several lumbar discs on one side (right) causing severe pain in lower back and radiating down my right leg. There is also a degenerative scoliosis of the lumbar spin (convex toward the left side).  I will be seeking orthopedic and neurologist advice on how to treat this.  The orthopedic surgeon that performed my knee replacement suggested that the knee instability was the cause of my spine deformation (which was not as pronounced at that time).

My question is: how difficult is it to establish connectivity of a secondary claim (the spine problems) to the already service connected knee disability?? 

You will need a nexus ( Medical Opinion) with a good medical rationale that connects your already service connected disability to any claim you choose to file. As any claim, no one knows how VA will rate them but a good medical opinion will win even if you have to file an appeal.

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@Kevin Viola

Getting the appropriate DBQ's ( Knee and Lower Leg Conditions & Neck (cervical) or Back (lumbar) conditions - I believe that those include/cover Sciatica issues as well ) completed by your doctors may help save some time by potentially preventing the need for a C&P - which you can request (the DBQ) it be done by the ortho or potentially your PCP.

As a fellow Spiney, I know how much Sciatica sucks. I hope you get the help you need. Like @pete992 said, you'll need their opinion, in the form of a Nexus that clearly spells out that your conditions are cause by your SC'd knee issue.

Edited by awgv001
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