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Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101660
03/24/06 05:17 PM
03/24/06 05:17 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 1,530
Minnesota
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Ken Delano Offline
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Minnesota
John,

Are you being treated just for Spondylolisthesis, or is that in addition to another issue such as AS?

Grade 1 Spondylolisthesis means that the vertibrate are 25% or less out of line. Since 24% is Grade 1, one can become totally disabled due to it I assume.


AS/PsA DX in 1988

Retired on disability
in 2005 at age 44
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101661
03/25/06 04:44 PM
03/25/06 04:44 PM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 36
New York
J
jb49 Offline
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Posts: 36
New York
Ken,

My decision on the last VA exam in 2000 said "chronic lumbosacral strain, with spondylolisthsis and bilateral spondylolysis which is 40% disabling under diagnostic code 5292 because there is evidence showing severe limitation of motion of the lumbar spine. The VA examination showed that the veteran has restriction of the lumbar spine limited to 10 to 12 degrees."

It also said "Consideration was given to possible entitlement to an extraschedular evaluation for this condition. This is not warranted as there is no evidence that the current case presents such an exceptional or unusual disability picture as to render impractical the application of the regular schedular standards." I really don't understand what all that means.

This was at the 2000 c&p exam and I was so thrilled to get it upped to 40% I didn't really absorb the whole three page report.

I'm trying to get my percentage above that because it has become so disabling for me. I have worked for myself for the past 30 years building furniture and I could take the time off whenever I needed to. If I had to hold a job, my boss would have never been able to put up with my time away from the job. So I'm waiting for my appointment with the DAV rep and see what he thinks of all this. I have not recovered from the rough handling at the c&p exam in February and that has set me way back. I am so discouraged that a PA at the Veterans Hospital would do that. Thanks for all your help, John


John
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101662
03/28/06 09:15 AM
03/28/06 09:15 AM
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SW missouri
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nitrohead Offline
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SW missouri
I too have been diagnosed with spondylolysis, herniated discs, osteoarthritis, osteophytes, lordosis, DJD,and DDD all by the VA...for 10 years now and I have tried to get 100% unemployability twice and have been denied twice....I cant even put my own shoes on......My recent VA turn down was 7 days ago after almost two yrs of waiting......I am going to appeal as I am severley debilitated and had to leave my job which was at the VA in Denver and I cannot even walk some days or much do anything else 20 days a month or more..I am currently rated at 40%, and I feel 150% disabled.
Does anyone have any advice for me?
Please help. I live in Branson Missouri
feel free to email me @ nitrorodz1@aol.com


Nitrohead the Navy Airdale
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101663
03/28/06 12:15 PM
03/28/06 12:15 PM
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Minnesota
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Ken Delano Offline
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Welcome to the Group Nitro.

I suggest you contact the DAV ASAP and have them handle your appeal from here on out.


AS/PsA DX in 1988

Retired on disability
in 2005 at age 44
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101664
03/29/06 01:06 AM
03/29/06 01:06 AM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 36
New York
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jb49 Offline
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New York
Ken,

A couple of posts ago, you asked me some specific questions about my VA diagnosis - I wrote back but was wondering if that answered your questions and if there was something significant about my VA report. It was the post before Nitrohead. I see the DAV rep tomorrow morning - and get fitted for a back brace. Anyone have any experience with those? I have a corset the VA issued which helps too but my orthopedic surgeon suggested I wear whatever makes me feel good that day. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks, John


John
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101665
03/29/06 02:15 AM
03/29/06 02:15 AM
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Posts: 1,530
Minnesota
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Ken Delano Offline
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Can't say as I do...........


AS/PsA DX in 1988

Retired on disability
in 2005 at age 44
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101666
03/29/06 04:32 AM
03/29/06 04:32 AM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 36
New York
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jb49 Offline
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New York
Thanks


John
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101667
03/30/06 02:40 PM
03/30/06 02:40 PM
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New York
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jb49 Offline
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New York
Hello,

I am John's wife and have been following this post with great interest. I am writing for John because at this point in his contacts with the VA, he is completely worn out. He did meet with the DAV rep yesterday and that was the best meeting that he has had with anyone connected with this c & p evaluation. The DAV rep was very knowledgeable and most importantly, very supportive. He remarked that a person would not be given a 40% disability if he wasn't really hurt. My husband said he was the first person that he had spoke with in the whole process that had said that and it really meant a lot to him. We walked out of that office with renewed hope.

Until we went down to records and got the last two visit notes from the VA Clinic. We went there mainly to get established to get prescriptions because we no longer can afford to keep the prescription coverage on our medical insurance. What we found was that the first visit which was only a routine physical included notes from the doctor that my husband was exaggerating his symptoms because the doctor could see he was sitting comfortably in a chair. If he had asked him if he were comfortable, he would have gotten a long sad answer. My husband has lived with this injury every day since 1969 - he is used to being in pain - to complain about each and every day would only be depressing. He tries to live and push the pain in the background.

Then he was treated at the Clinic for his back and on the notes the only part that couldn't be transcribed because of "phone or computer problems" was the part about how the doctor found numbness in his feet and diagnosed him with a pinched nerve in his back. According to the notes, she has no recollection of that part of the exam. So that really put him in a very depressed state of mind. I am not so naive that I believe that the VA is going to make this process easy. But when you are really hurt and even the doctors are misrepresenting the record, you lose faith in the whole system.

If we had not talked with the DAV rep yesterday, the despair around here could not be coped with. But we both appreciate all your help and information in this process and your referral to the DAV. Diane


John
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101668
03/30/06 02:50 PM
03/30/06 02:50 PM
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Montana
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mont974x4 Offline
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It's important to be honest in these appointments. It takes a lot of pride swallowing, I admit it and it's hard. I make it a point to comment on how comfortable I am, even if it is contrary to how I look at the moment. I'm also in the habit of constantly shifting around so people can see that I'm trying to ease pan and get more comfy. I also freely admit that I push through the pain just so things get done. I have a house and family to run, they can't wait for me to have a "good day". I also commented at my last exam that I consider a good day as 4 on the 1-10 pain scale.


Jay

NOTE: If you aint here to help row the boat then you are welcome to walk the plank.
Re: VA Ankylosing Spondylitis Ruling #101669
03/30/06 03:11 PM
03/30/06 03:11 PM
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Posts: 36
New York
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jb49 Offline
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New York
I hear what you're saying, Jay. When we went for the first visit just trying to get meds we thought we should just stick to that subject not realizing that the VA Clinic doctor was also "examining" him for his back. It has been a real eye opening experience. My husband has been on numerous VA exams over the years since he was first officially disabled by the VA and never in all those years was he treated like he has been over the past three months. I have a feeling that they are on a campaign to just get information favorable to their argument and deny the claim. But for the VA Clinic doctor to be dragging her feet to prescribe him pain medication is so surprisingly. Thanks for your reply, Diane


John
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