Jump to content

  • veteranscrisisline-badge-chat-1.gif

  • Fund HadIt.com

    $2,203.00 of $1,500.00 Donate Now
  • Advertisemnt

  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims


    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 ...
    Continue Reading
  • Most Common VA Disabilities Claimed for Compensation:   


  • Advertisemnt

  • VA Watchdog

  • Advertisemnt

  • Ads

  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

    employment 2.jpeg

    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

  • 0

Gulf War Burn Pit Rheumatoid Arthritis


  • Patron

I tired to research this here but I did not find this question so here goes.  I retired in 2011, i was diagnosed with Rheumatoid arthritis in 2019.  GW and burn pits 2006 and 2008.  On the Burn Pit registry.    I'll file a disability claim but will they just boot it since i'm filing almost 10 years after retirement? .  I've read a lot of material, some on VA.gov websites, and I'm not clear if RA/autoimmune diseases have an established presumptive cause with GW service/burn put exposure.  One article would make it sound like it was in the works, another like it was a done deal.  I can think back and recall joint pain over and above as far back as 2007 (my 50th birthday) but I chalked up to aging, wear and tear and an active lifestyle.  it started as occasional pain and stiffness in my hands, then progressed to my feet,  continued to progress to shoulders, knees and hips and the episodes of pain became more severe, lasted longer and happened more often.  By 2019 I complained to my civilian doctor saying this is not normal, referred t a Rheumatologist and diagnosed late 2019.  Unfortunately blew a lumbar disk, fusion in April 2020, so i just got back to the rheumatologist,  I've also read about the correlation of RA with PTSD and I've got a 70% rating for PTSD.

Do i file for RA as a new claim with the nexus as burn pit exposure or as RA secondary to PTS.  Multiple joints are affected but hands and feet without a doubt the worst.  I can't write a sentence longhand that someone could read and I can't pull the tabbed metal lid off a can of soup or walk down the stairs without two handrails because the achilles area of my heels are so tight.  IT loosens up with activity , but sit in a chair for 20 minutes and get up and its like i never loosened up. 

by the way, i mentioned to the Doc that I might be asking for a letter and shared that an important statement from a doctor might be something like it as more likely than not likely that my RA was caused buy my service/burn pit exposure and she was like, sure, no problem.  


Sorry for running on, 



Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Answers 18
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters For This Question

Top Posters For This Question

Popular Posts

Broken soldier shared a link about "presumptive".  But, that is just one of at least 4 ways to get sc.  The other's are: 1.  Direct.  You need a diagnosis, nexus, and in service event.   2. 

Absolutely. It literally breaks my heart when I get a claim across my screen and the claimant tried to claim specifically the most recent diagnosis only, or tried to "Web MD" it- shutting the door on

Recommended Posts

  • 0
  • HadIt.com Elder



Dont get super specific and try to be a doctor, trying to link X with Y. LIke, if you have sleep problems and you claim OSA but your sleep issues are tied to MH? You'll probably get denied because OSA is a specific diagnosis. KISS.

You were in SW asia, you were there during a presumed period, and its before DEC31, 2021 (unless the time line gets extended). Just claiming that you have rheumatoid and you were in SW Asia is enough. Its a presumed SC, already. 

Edited by brokensoldier244th
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
  • Moderator

Broken soldier shared a link about "presumptive".  But, that is just one of at least 4 ways to get sc.  The other's are:

1.  Direct.  You need a diagnosis, nexus, and in service event.  

2.  Presumptive.  Link above.

3.  Secondary to another SC condition.  This means you need a diagnosis and a doc opinion that your arthritis is at least as likely as not related to (a SC condition).  

4.  1151 claim 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
  • HadIt.com Elder

True, but 1151 is an allegation of maltreatment from VA care

Direct- ok, but irrelevant. His RA is already covered under 3.317

Secondary- secondary to what? If he doesn't have another condition that can cause rheumatoid arthritis it isn't secondary. 

Presumed is the hardest but easiest way to get it claimed. Hardest because presumed involves things like being in combat in places, having certain awards, being stationed only in certain places like Camp Lejeune, or, in his case, SW Asia during the GW. So, the easiest path for him is presumed since that means it doesn't really matter all that much what his STRs might or might not say- its irrelevant. Congress already said "hey, if you were there, guess what Pvt Snuffy? You probably done messed up". 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
  • Patron

thanks soldier


besides the 10 year gap between retirement and the claim I'm about to make, this is the part that threw me - right off a VA.gov site


Eligibility requirements related to time of diagnosis

If your illness or condition was diagnosed while you were on active duty or before December 31, 2021 

You can get benefits for your illness or condition if both of these descriptions are true for you and you have one of the presumptive diseases listed below.

Both of these must be true. Your illness or condition:

  • Caused you to be ill for at least 6 months, and
  • Resulted in a disability rating of 10% or more  


Its that last bullet that seems backward to me.  I dont already HAVE a 10% or more disability rating for RA, that's what I'm trying to claim?  So how can I meet the requirements for both those two conditions to be true.  I'm probably overthinking it.

As for the other point, I  will KIS.  In the 8 year break between active duty and ANG  i became an RN.  I stayed in civil engineering in the guard but i'm a nurse.  my wife's a nurse.  Her sister is a nurse and my sister is a physical therapist.  My default is to talk "Medical" .  I have to leave that all at the door,


You've given me what I need to know and its much appreciated.  My overall disability rating is 90% (91) now, i part because of HADIT.COM, and i plan on asking for re-eval for my back (arthritis 10%) since i had the lumbar fusion in April along with this RA claim.  Who knows, this may be my last claim.  thanks again


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Answer this question...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Ads

  • Ads

  • Similar Content

    • By SPO
      I have had hand tremors for a few years now (i don't remember exactly when they started).  I was recently told by a doctor to see a neurologist, which I did last month.  I was told that she believes they are physiologic tremor.  With no known history tremors in my family and no abnormalities in my blood work, I am curious if this is a condition that I could apply for as presumptive to service in the gulf war? I did 3 deployments to Iraq (2005,2006, 2007), I am also already presumptively service for IBS from gulf war service.  Has anyone had experience with this?
    • By nacole
      Hi, Berta (everyone), I am curious if there’s any instructions on how to go about:
      DIC is granted & accrued / death pension benefits are denied. My VA rep (Colorado VA office), recently explained to me that my mom was awarded DIC benefits ( I filed on her behalf ), effective the day of his death (my dad died Dec.30, 2017) of...
      but, we (she) was denied accrued because the Army / VA did not owe him any money, since he never filed for benefits while alive. While that part is true, he never filed because he was told he did not have agent orange, he was told he “wasn’t in the right theater”, course that “theater” explanation is false. Vietnam establishes theater now, period. My dad was on ground (in air) for a year. Further my dad’s records I received from archives (medals included) do not have a lot of information in them. I have a hard time understanding what they do say. My dad was 191st Military Intellegence, not sure if that is why I have trouble making sense of the records they gave me or if that has anything to do with why I had such a trouble free approval on DIC portion of our claim (approved first time & expedited approval within 3 months)..to which we are grateful. However, I have an original document from 1989 that reads, “ In regards to YOU’RE request to be tested for agent orange...Donald L. Welch...” (my dad)..you’re appointment is scheduled for ...1989 at ... etc. then written in red pen on the top of the document is written “6-8 weeks”. I prusume his “testing” (set for an entire day 8am-6pm) did not inform my dad he had exposure, because he then would have filed! Yet, clearly he did (death certificate reads CAD) & DIC awarded for presumptive CAD! Throughout his lengthy medical history of:  Arteries blocked (multiple), Surgical stents, cardiac-arrest, COPD,  bronchitis-chronic, lung problems, etc. He believed he did not qualify for benefits. Months before his death he went to VA medical at his brothers insistence & on the way home from getting RX (for the first time ever from the VA) he told his brother he was told he wasn’t in the “theater” for agent orange benefits. By the time he got his first RX delivered through the mail...he was dead....of CAD. How do I prove establish that he would have filed for benefits (as far back as 1989, document attached), if they had not told him he didn’t qualify & wasn’t exposed? How do I get addditional records when he was military intelligence? I can’t even find out what battles, his medal citations are even from. I also know his helicopter crashed while he was in Vietnam and his back had either whipping marks or shrapnel scarred all over it...I want to know why. No records if him being a POW. Can anyone link me in the right direction? I’ll have to figure out how to attach documents to post- will follow through.
    • By AFgal
      In March I filed a presumptive claim for GWI for fibromyalgia.  I know that C&P exams are not always required and so was wondering if anyone knows if they are usually required or not for a presumptive claim. I also wondered if it matters to the VA that my diagnosis was given by a military doctor at a major military hospital versus a civilian doctor. 
      I included a letter in my documentation clearly stating this was a presumptive claim quoting the 38 CFR § 3.317 reg for fibromyalgia.
    • By glashutte
      Can someone please clarify these concerns?
      1. During the presumptive period after my ETS, do I file everything under one claim? Is it better to file everything under one claim or separately under multiple claims? I'm afraid of the doctors and staff looking over my claim and think I am 'malingering' even though they are all true. 
      2. I do not have my actual medical record packet but do have a generalized medical data (still quite detailed) from Tricare Patient Portal via downloading from the Blue Button. Has anyoe had experience with this?
      3. When do I submit my nexus? 
      4. Do I need a nexus if I was seen during service by doctors and diagnosed for the condition I am claiming?
      5. Do I submit proof (being seen by doctors during service, diagnosis during service) a long with my claim? Do you just send them the entire medical record or do you organize it so they can easily match up your medical history and each claim? It would be a pain for them to search through your whole medical history and at that point they may not even want to bother anymore...I assume.
    • By JustGettingStarted
      I have been retired for 7 years now and was rated at 60% for various disabilities after I retired.  
      One month after I retired, I had a colonoscopy; benign polyps (i.e. benign neoplasms), a type that could turn to cancer, were found and removed.  I have had polyps removed twice since then.  Now I would like to get my polyps service connected at 0% in case something more serious were to develop in the future.  
      My question:  Since my polyps diagnosis was only a month after I retired, do I need a NEXUS letter to say the polyps were "more than likely" to have developed while on active duty, or would it be presumed the polyps developed while I was still on active duty?
      I looked at the presumptives in Title 38, and I don't think this fell under any of the automatics.
      Thanks for any help.
  • Ads

  • Our picks

    • I already get compensation for bladder cancer for Camp Lejeune Water issue, now that it is added to Agent Orange does it mean that the VA should pay me the difference between Camp Lejeune and 1992 when I retired from the Marine Corps or do I have to re-apply for it for Agent Orange, or will the VA look at at current cases already receiving bladder cancer compensation. I’m considered 100% Disabled Permanently 
      • 10 replies
    • 5,10, 20 Rule
      The 5, 10, 20 year rules...

      Five Year Rule) If you have had the same rating for five or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless your condition has improved on a sustained basis. All the medical evidence, not just the reexamination report, must support the conclusion that your improvement is more than temporary.

      Ten Year Rule) The 10 year rule is after 10 years, the service connection is protected from being dropped.

      Twenty Year Rule) If your disability has been continuously rated at or above a certain rating level for 20 or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless it finds the rating was based on fraud. This is a very high standard and it's unlikely the rating would get reduced.

      If you are 100% for 20 years (Either 100% schedular or 100% TDIU - Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability or IU), you are automatically Permanent & Total (P&T). And, that after 20 years the total disability (100% or IU) is protected from reduction for the remainder of the person's life. "M-21-1-IX.ii.2.1.j. When a P&T Disability Exists"

      At 55, P&T (Permanent & Total) or a few other reasons the VBA will not initiate a review. Here is the graphic below for that. However if the Veteran files a new compensation claim or files for an increase, then it is YOU that initiated to possible review.

      NOTE: Until a percentage is in place for 10 years, the service connection can be removed. After that, the service connection is protected.


      Example for 2020 using the same disability rating

      1998 - Initially Service Connected @ 10%

      RESULT: Service Connection Protected in 2008

      RESULT: 10% Protected from reduction in 2018 (20 years)

      2020 - Service Connection Increased @ 30%

      RESULT: 30% is Protected from reduction in 2040 (20 years)
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 53 replies
    • Post in New BVA Grants
      While the BVA has some discretion here, often they "chop up claims".  For example, BVA will order SERVICE CONNECTION, and leave it up to the VARO the disability percent and effective date.  

      I hate that its that way.  The board should "render a decision", to include service connection, disability percentage AND effective date, so we dont have to appeal "each" of those issues over then next 15 years on a hamster wheel.  
    • Finally heard back that I received my 100% Overall rating and a 100% PTSD rating Following my long appeal process!

      My question is this, given the fact that my appeal was on the advanced docket and is an “Expedited” appeal, what happens now and how long(ish) is the process from here on out with retro and so forth? I’ve read a million things but nothing with an expedited appeal status.

      Anyone deal with this situation before? My jump is from 50 to 100 over the course of 2 years if that helps some. I only am asking because as happy as I am, I would be much happier to pay some of these bills off!
        • Like
      • 13 replies
    • I told reviewer that I had a bad C&P, and that all I wanted was a fair shake, and she even said, that was what she was all ready viewed for herself. The first C&P don't even  reflect my Treatment in the VA PTSD clinic. In my new C&P I was only asked about symptoms, seeing shit, rituals, nightmares, paying bills and about childhood, but didn't ask about details of it. Just about twenty question, and  nothing about stressor,
  • Ads

  • Popular Contributors

  • Ad

  • Latest News
  • Create New...

Important Information

{terms] and Guidelines