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DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
#169061 03/11/10 12:00 AM
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I SERVED IN THE ARMY FOR EIGHT YEARS. I CURRENTLY HAVE A 10 PERCENT RATING FOR ARRYTHMIA AND 0 PERCENT FOR GASTRITIS. I HAVE RECENTLY BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH AS AND SINCE I HAD BACK, KNEE, FEET AND SHIN PROBLEMS IN THE ARMY THAT SHOULD BE DOCUMENTED, I WAS WONDERING IF ANYONE KNOWS OF A CASE THAT HAS BEEN AWARDED A RATING EVEN IF THE DIAGNOSIS WAS MADE 9 YEARS AFTER DISCHARGE. I WAS POS FOR HLA B27 AND IF THEY WOULD HAVE INVESTIGATED MY COMPLAINTS FURTHER IN THE SERVICE INSTEAD OF GIVING ME MOTRIN AND SENDING ME ON MY WAY THEN I WOULDNT BE SUFFERING NOW. PLEASE HELP WITH ANY INFO YOU CAN. I AM MISERABLE AND I THINK ENBROL IS THE ONLY THING THAT WOULD HELP BUT I WONT BE ABLE T AFFORD IT. ON INDOCIN AND METHOTREXATE NOW BUT IT IS NOT WORKING. I F I COULD GET A RATING FOR THIS AND GET MY RX COVERED I WOULD BE REBORN AGAIN. THEY CAN KEEP THE MONEY JUST WANT THE RX. ANYONE THAT CAN STEER ME IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION WOULD BE APPRECIATED. EVEN IF YOU TELL ME I AM SOL THAT WOULD BE FINE. THANKS RANDY

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
tarandy24 #171495 04/11/10 12:48 PM
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I got it for reactive arthritis and they specifically gave it to me cause the records showed where I went in complaining of my sacroiliac joints and one knee. It's best to look back over your own records...I had completely forgotten about that one visit and it was over 20 yrs ago.


\:\) Susie \:\)
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
mohair3 #175354 05/25/10 01:19 AM
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Hello, I am a 100% Disabled Vietnam Vet with A/S, I was treated in Nam for sever back pain and taken off my job (I was a Weapons Spec.)the last 3 mo. I was there, before they just fed and I do mean fed me Daravon all they wanted was just get the weapons loaded. When I got home in 1970, I was called to have a phys. with the VA but had just gone to work and was married and was afraid I would loose my job if they found out I had back problems. I didn't know they couldn't do that. So I didn't go, fast forward 26 yrs and a hell of a lot of pain later. To make a long story shorter, I went to the DAV, they were no help at all (I'm a Life Member) I was told it had been too long and would take forever. I got on the phone called the state VA center and within 1 hr. I had found out what the DAV said would take forever. I got an appointment on my own for a phys. they did fill out the paper work, finally but I went through my Senators office and they did everything that I had not done. Had my physical was rated 40% right off. Four yrs later my private Rheum. wanted me to come out of work (Machinist, Toolmaker) went back on the VA the DAV filled out the paper work again. Was told since I was still working I was turned down (I been off work for a Month) the nso did not even realize I had been disabled by SS and my employer even though it was in the papers I had filled out. I got the Senators office on it again I was rated 100% that was in 1992. The Diagnoses was not for Ankylosing Spondylitis but SPINE,BONY FIXATION, don't know where that came from but it worked. But you can or could go back a long time if you have the documation, I didn't but I knew the time frame and the Doc's name that treated me, that was it.
Good Luck
Woody


Woody
Vietnam Vet
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Woody #175382 05/25/10 10:42 AM
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The only way you win the fight is to start the fight. Being misdiagnosed when you actually have AS is normal even for DECADES.

Last edited by Free10; 05/25/10 10:43 AM.
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Free10 #180664 07/27/10 01:29 AM
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My husband is retired navy since 2001, today he was told by his doctor he has AS. He has suffered for years. can he go back and try to get disability from VA? And when you get disability from VA do you also get SS, or can you get one but not the other? We are lost as what to do, he can't work anymore. He has had 3 back surgeries 1 just before he retired and 2 right after he got out. Thanks for the help

Last edited by Rose; 07/27/10 01:33 AM.
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Rose #180669 07/27/10 03:19 AM
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SS and VA compensation are blind to each other if you are talking regular SS disability and not SSI and each one operates separately. Start your case and file with both immediately. I seriously doubt he just got AS but he probably has had it since at least his early 20s and the doctors always thought his problems were caused by something else and misdiagnosed him. This happens a lot along with having to wait many decades before they finally get the diagnosis right.

Legally you are owed both and should get it, but VA is not very honest and trying to get justice from them can take many years and many die still waiting for it as they deny deny deny. Even if granted, it is common for them to give out greatly under rated disability levels so the pay out is meager. For example a 90% disability rating only pays half as much as the 100% rating so they give out stupidly low ratings to keep from paying out what they owe to the damaged veterans and basically this is very well known.

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Rose #180953 07/31/10 01:29 AM
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Rose, Yes he can get his VA disability and SS. It may take a while to get it but as Free 10 said file as soon as you can and don't give up, if you have the proof you can get them.
Hang in there!!!
Woody


Woody
Vietnam Vet
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Woody #181096 08/02/10 03:45 PM
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Hi,
New to the board. I have been reading with interest all the stories.I was involved in a jeep accident in 1983 while in the Army, I spent almost a year in treatment with no relief from the back and hip pains. One of the Docs finally tested me for AS and his results were "You have AS and you will be in a wheelchair within 5 years" (still not there). I spent the next year on restricted duty and took a Honorable discharge in 1985 after 9 years of service. I was an MP and wanted to continue in Law Enforcement, I was afraid that a Medical discharge would impact my employment chances.
After about 5 years I went back to the VA because the AS had gotten worse. After the exam I was given a 10% rating, that started the next 15 years of exams, Lost records and fights with the VA. In 2003 I was examined by a Doc that knew what AS is, he reviewed my file and resubmitted prior findings, I was rated 170% and back rated a year. 100% for spine, 20% for loss of range of motion in my shoulders, 20% limited range of motion in my hips and 10% for my knee involving another injury while serving. Once I was awarded that rating I filed and recieved SSI disability payments, note: that when going for SSI take your VA records with you.
The most important thing is to find a doctor that understands AS. It is not a common problem and some docs have never dealt with it. I have also found that even if you are having a good day, and everyone that has AS knows what I mean, talk about your bad days. Don't be embarrassed when talking to the Doc, explain how the AS effects you. Bathing, bathroom use, sex, dressing everything that effects your life.
Also I noticed a huge amount of meds being used. I went thru the use of meds and found the side effects out weighed the benefits. I have weened myself off of all meds but ibprophen. I have stiffness and pain but no stomach problems, no sleep issues, sure the neck is bent the arms don't go up and the hips lockup but I feel better.
The biggest thing is exercise. The best advise a Doc ever gave me was do what I can until it hurts and then stop. I cut the lawn and do gardening, if I can only do it for 15 minutes that's all I do, if I can go 30 minutes I do. I also go to the golf course with my wife and walk as far as I can and swing the clubs I don't do very well but it is the exercise that counts. Get out walk, play with the grandkids and the dog do everything you can. When I am sore I use ice packs and heat rather than meds. The biggest issue I have with meds is the longer they are used the more it takes to get the same relief. I don't want to be 70 and taking 50 pills a day.

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
k9erec #181105 08/02/10 07:39 PM
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WOW your story sounds allot like mine!

I was hurt in 1981 at WSMR NM in an M880 accident. MP too. Went on to be a MWD Handler. My back, hips etc never stopped hurting after the accident and in 1988 they finally figured out I had AS. I was then medically discharged after 10+ years at 20%. VA gave me 40% off the bat. That was in 1990. In 2004 they moved me up to 70% and I am now full and permanent.

Wonder if we knew each other?
I was at WSMR in 80-81
Pusan Korea 81-82
Fort Bliss 82-86
Heidelberg(OPM-USAEUR) 86-90
Dog schools were 81,83,86
BNCOC was Jan-Mar 88.


AS/PsA DX in 1988

Retired on disability
in 2005 at age 44
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Ken Delano #182088 08/14/10 02:39 AM
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Hello, I got out of the Navy in 1998 and I just got a 10% rating in the mail two days ago. 12 years after service for me. Early signs of AS were all over my medical records. It has been a 2 year process just to get in the VA system and I am not done yet as AS affects my life in so many ways. So, if it can be traced back to the military, go for it. You deserve it.

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
mcl29 #183939 09/05/10 03:43 PM
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I was in service from 1988-1992. The whole time I was in, I had knee problems, back problems, gi stuff too. I was on profile for the majority of the time. I think I took one pt test, to graduate basic for the run, and after that I was in too much pain, I did the walk from then on. Like i said, it was pretty much constant, the entire time, that my knees were in pain and I was not allowed to run. When I was discharged I was given a 10% rating for arthritis to knees. I was diagnosed w/AS 2 years ago, been suffering the whole time since I joined the army, 22 years now. I can barely walk, work or even do much of anything. I have MST, PTSD, depression, knee pain, the AS, osteoarthritis in knees, and fibromyalgia. I have not been evaluated for the depression for increase in money due to an 'incident' in basic. (I didnt report this until that big scandal in the early 90's.)

I guess I should phrase this in a question.. (jeopardy style). Do you think I have a claim? I have been trying to get a copy of my records, but recieved a letter stating that the VA had my chart so I couldnt get a copy. Maybe because I had spoken to the DAV about applying for an increase.

I am so tired of all this. I never had any problems until I joined the army... now? I am a mess frown .

thanks in advance for your help
cs


The most important thing in a conversation is what isnt said.
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Ken Delano #196306 01/31/11 01:33 AM
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Ken,

Did you reapply for 70% and Full and permanent?

And what did you do?

This is what we are dealing with now...

Thanks

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
bigadams65 #196326 01/31/11 01:55 PM
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In 2003 the AS really started getting bad (pre Enbrel). By August of 2004 I was at the point that movement was very limited and my bone density had gotten to the Osteoporosis stage. So In November of 2004 the Rhum at the VA wrote a letter to my employer (Worked in the Federal Prisons as a CO) telling them that I could no longer perform my job. I then applied for a Disability retirement.
In April of 2005 OPM granted my application for Disability retirement. That happened on April 7th and I had the DAV in Minneapolis submit a new claim. Less than two months later the VA declared me Unemployable. I could very easily prove that I should be at the 100% rate, but that would not have any effect on the end line in my case.
Somewhere in the process the SSA lost my claim. So I ended up getting my Social Security back dated for 22 months.
The hardest part of the entire process was the fact that I was only 44 years old when I walked off the job for the last day.But looking back I now ask myself why I worked so hard at hiding how bad i was for so long at work. Truth be known I could have left 2-3 years prior to when I did.
So, to answer your question. I started out with 30% when I got out of the Army in 1990. Nine months later the VA raised it to 40%. I did not go to the VA for anything until things got real bad in 2003. Early 2004 I submitted a new claim and was raised to 70%. Think it was April of 04. August of 04 is when the Rhuem told me to leave the Law Enforcement field.


AS/PsA DX in 1988

Retired on disability
in 2005 at age 44
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
Ken Delano #199072 02/24/11 08:53 PM
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I understand. I am only 48.
My poor wife went out 3 years ago.
Was a tenured professor -- all that education for
nothing.
She has 9 rare disorders and is very very ill.
She worked through some horrific symptoms most
of us could never have done it.
She still misses teaching.
We both got sick after the Gulf War.
Also interesting that the army in 92 put me out
with 30% and VA gave me 40%.
Thanks

Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
mcl29 #231852 04/22/12 02:02 PM
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Ok, here it goes, I just had a c&p done. My case started in 2003 when I was ADSEP'd from the Navy, been fighting the VA since. Here is the modified copy of my latest C&P.

I got copies of my complete C-file from the VA. The c&p exam I had in 2004, the doctor stated that my back pain was more likely than not related to my service in the Navy. But I was denied service connection because there was not an official diagnosis, just stated back pain.

I also had a C&P exam on 16 Mar 2012, where the Dr. states that my Ankylosing Spondylitis is more likely than not related to my service. The following is a breakdown of the dr notes from the recent C&P:

Bilateral Hip Condition:

R hip flexion : 20
R hip extension: 5
L hip flexion : 20
L hip extension : 5

Painful motion begins at 5 on both
Abduction lost beyond 10 degrees yes (Both)
Adduction limited - can not cross legs yes (Both)

Rotation limited - Veteran cant toe-out more than 15 degrees yes (Both)

Patient in severe pain, repetitive use ROM not completed

Functional loss of hip and thigh - yes (Both)

Less movement than normal, Weakened movement, Excess fatigability, pain on movement, instability of station, disturbance of locomotion, interference with sitting, standing, and or weight-bearing these are all marked for both Hips.

localized tenderness or pain to palpitation for joints/soft tissue of either hip (yes - Both)

Muscle strength test -
Hip Flexion 4/5 on both
Hip abduction and hip extension 3/5 on both

Images were taken, degenerative arthritis is documented in both hips, and Ankylosing Spondylitis seen on x-ray results.

Cervical spine condition:

ROM:
forward flexion ends: 20
painful motion: 15

extension ends : 5
painful : 5

right and left lateral flexion ends : 5
painful motion : 5

right and left lateral rotation ends: 10
painful : 10

did not do repetitive ROM test, too much pain

Functional loss:

less movement than normal, weakened movement, excess fatigability, pain on movement, interference with sitting, standing, weight bearing

localized tenderness - yes



reflex exams:
biceps : 1+ (both)
triceps : 0 (both)
brachioradials : 1+ (both)

sensory all normal

x-rays show Ankylosing Spondylitis


Thoracolumbar spine condition:

forward flexion : 10 - ends with pain
extension - 10 - ends with pain

right lateral / left lateral flexion : 5 - ends with pain

right / left lateral rotation : 10 - with pain

did not complete repetitions

Functional loss: yes
less movement than normal, excess fatigability, instability of station, disturbance of locomotion, interference with sitting, standing, and/or weight bearing

Localized tenderness ; yes

guarding / muscle spasm of thoraculumbar spine (
yes, abnormal gait

Muscle strength : Hip flexion; knee extension;ankle plantar flexion; ankle dorsiflexion ; great toe extension - all 4/5 on both

reflexes : knee and ankle ; 0 - both sides

all sensory normal

Radiculopathy yes: l/r lower extremity ; moderate (both) paresthesias and or dysesthesias ; moderate (both)

nerve roots involved: L2/L3/L4 (both)(femoral nerve) ; L4/L5/S1/S2/S3 (sciatic nerve) (both)

severity of radiculopathy and side affected : Moderate - Both

Intervertebral disc syndrome and incapacitating episodes, yes to both

Images: Ankylosing Spondylitis and Scoliosis noted on thoracic and lumbar spine x-ray results

Pain and decreased ROM affect the veterans ability to work

Medical opinion of VA Examiner:

patient was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis in April 2011, However, symptoms began in 2001, during his enlistment. This is clearly supported when reviewing his medical records. The veteran was seen on multiple occasions for his ongoing back pain, but never officially diagnosed until recently.

The veteran's condition (back, bilateral hip) is at least as likely as not incurred in or caused by his military service.



Sorry this is so long, but I wanted to get an accurate opinion, and to do so, I have to give the full picture.

Do you have an opinion on what I may get as far as service connection goes? A best case scenario will be fine.


Losing is NOT an OPTION! Never give up hope, because A.S. never gives up! Always remember, stand as tall and proud as you can, no matter who you are, you are SOMEONE!
Re: DIAGNOSED AFTER SERVICE FOR AS DO I HAVE A CLAIM
tarandy24 #235417 06/23/12 01:06 AM
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You will do definitely be service connected. What percentage is a little more difficult to call but at least 60%.

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