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» American Gulfwar Veterans Association » Veterans Issues » Veteran Compensation Issues » Service-Connected for Parkinson's!!!

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Author Topic: Service-Connected for Parkinson's!!!
dortchs
Sgt.
Member # 489

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I just got my rating letter in the mail today. I received an SC of 30% for
Parkinson's. Obviously, I feel that it should be higher (100%), but at least
I got the SC part.

In my opinion, my Parkinson's was caused by my exposure to environmental toxins
while I was stationed at Kelly AFB in San Antonio, TX during the first Desert
Storm. The areas I worked in were either built on an old landfill or located
next to one.

My first claim was denied (obviously) stating that my symptoms had not surfaced
within one year of my separation. As we all know, symptoms take an average of
"2 to 21 years" to surface. My symptoms first appeared 8 years after my
separation.

After the denial, I started a more thorough search for "material information".
I was able to locate detailed soil and groundwater contamination reports.
After finding out that Carl was approved, I asked him and he provided me a copy
of his own report. It was invaluable. It took four years, but I finally
completed my research. I then filed a new claim in Mar 08.

I looked for a doctor to evaluate my case. I found Dr. Dennis Barson.
His qualifications in Neurology, Toxicology, and past experience as an RO were
key to my claim.

I have a few questions that I hope you can help me with.
1. What should my next step be? Should I file an appeal or a request for
reconsideration?
2. There were a few critical(?) errors/assumptions made by the rater. How
should I address these?
3. Unfortunately, during my C&P exam, I was in an "on" state. So even though
I informed him of this and explained how I was at other times, his C&P report
was not favorable with this information. He only stated "what he saw". How
should I approach this? Should I videotape different parts of my day, both
"on" and "off"? Would written statements from others that see me be enough?
I think that a picture/video is worth a thousand words.

I know that I have left out a few other obvious questions and would appreciate
your opinions.

If anyone has any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.

--------------------
100% SC Parkinson's Disease
Aid and Attendance

Posts: 20 | From: Missouri | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Gale
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CONGRATULATIONS, DORTCHS! This is good news, indeed for GW/PDVets in that you were awarded your claim more than the 1 or 2 year (of exposure and discharge) requirement. Now, it would be great to know if there were any common toxic exposures in what you found at Kelly AFB and the toxic exposures in the theatre of operations during the war.

I did a little searching in the va.gov website to find info on PD and I did find an example of a PD claim (below) showing the diagnostic codes used in that claim and the ratings given for the CFRs for Neurological and Convulsive Disorders. Most of the Diagnostic Codes I found for PD were 8004, 8515, and 8520. There may be more, but I'm not familiar with the PD codes.

If you know the diagnostic code(s) identified in your claim, you can look it up in the CFR 4.124A here:
http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/regs/38CFR/BOOKC/PART4/S4_124a.DOC

If you have any other neuro conditions other than what was identified in your claim, you can look them up in the link above to see the value of their ratings. Then, if you didn't file for one of the conditions listed, you may want to talk with your VSO about filing for an increase or an additional claim.

This info was taken from the VA claims files and is an example of how this particular vet's PD claim was rated:

http://www.va.gov/vetapp09/files1/0903196.txt
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW

1. The criteria for an initial 10 percent rating for
manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's disease as it
affected his right (major) upper extremity were met for the
period prior to July 4, 2006. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1155, 5107
(West 2002); 38 C.F.R. § 4.124a, Diagnostic Codes 8004, 8515
(2008).

2. The criteria for an initial 20 percent rating for
manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's disease as it
affected his left (minor) upper extremity were met for the
period prior to July 4, 2006. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1155, 5107
(West 2002); 38 C.F.R. § 4.124a, Diagnostic Codes 8004, 8515
(2008).

3. The criteria for an initial 20 percent rating for
manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's disease as it
affected his left lower extremity were met for the period
prior to July 4, 2006. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1155, 5107 (West
2002); 38 C.F.R. § 4.124a, Diagnostic Codes 8004, 8520
(2008).

4. The criteria for an initial 50 percent rating for
manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's disease as it has
affected his right (major) upper extremity have been met from
December 2, 2006. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1155, 5107 (West 2002);
38 C.F.R. § 4.124a, Diagnostic Codes 8004, 8515 (2008).

5. The criteria for an initial rating in excess
of 20 percent for manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's
disease as it has affected his left (minor) upper extremity
from December 2, 2006, have not been met. 38 U.S.C.A.
§§ 1155, 5107 (West 2002); 38 C.F.R. § 4.124a, Diagnostic
Codes 8004, 8515 (2008).

6. The criteria for an initial 40 percent rating for
manifestations of the veteran's Parkinson's disease as it has
affected his left lower extremity have been meta from
December 2, 2006. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1155, 5107 (West 2002);
38 C.F.R. §§ 4.7, 4.7, 4.124a, Diagnostic Codes 8004, 8520
(2008).



Again... CONGRATULATIONS! And please keep us posted on any further increases and awards.

I'm sure our PDVets here would like to know what the toxins were that you identified at Kelly AFB. Please expand on those toxins and exposures for us and let me know if this information I've given helps you.

--------------------
HONOR OUR VETERANS WITH BETTER CARE AND BENEFITS

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dortchs
Sgt.
Member # 489

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Thank you for your help Gale.

I went to my DAV rep and we filed a new claim for residuals and secondaries.


Here is some more detailed information about the different toxins that I
believe I was exposed to. At Kelly AFB, there were 70 different toxins
that I was able to identify from my research that met or exceeded their
assigned maximum recommended level (MRL). These toxins were found in
soil and groundwater.

They are: Acetone, 2-Butanone, 4-Methyl-2-pentanone, Benzene, Toluene,
Ethylbenzene, Xylenes, Chlorobenzene, 1,2-Dichlorobenzene, 1,3-Dichlorobenzene,
1,4-Dichlorobenzene, 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene, cis-1,2-Dichloropropene,
1,1,1-Trichloroethane, 1,2-Dichloroethane, Tetrachloroethene, Trichloroethene,
1,2-Dichloroethene, Vinyl chloride, Methylene chloride,
Bis (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Di-n-butyl phthalate, Di-n-octyl phthalate,
Diethyl phthlalate, Acenaphthene, Acenaphthylene, Anthracene, Benzo(a)anthracene,
Benzo(b)fluoranthene, Benzo(k)fluoranthene, Benzo(g,h,i)perylene, Benzo(a)pyrene,
Chrysene, Fluoranthene, Fluorene, Indeno(1,2,3-cd)pyrene, 2-Metflylnaphthalene,
Naphthalene, Phenanthrene, Pyrene, N-Nitrosodiphenylamine, Phenol, 2-Methylphenol,
4-Methylphenol, 2,4-Dimethylphenol, Pentachlorophenol, Carbon disulfide,
Dibenzofuran, 3-Nitroaniline, 4-Nitroaniline, Polychlorinated Biphenyls, 4,4'-DDT,
4,4'-DDE, Endrin, Antimony, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Cadmium, Chromium, Copper,
Lead, Manganese, Mercury, Nickel, Silver, Thallium, Vanadium, Zinc, Cyan


In my IMO from Dr. Barson, he focused on the following toxins:

Trichloroethylene (TCE)
Tetrachloroethene (TCA)
Manganese
Carbon Disulfide
Vinyl Chloride
4-methyl-2-pentanone (MiBK)
PCB's


He was able to complete the connection between my SMR's and these toxins (nexus)
which was the deciding factor in my claim. From my claim:

"Since we have a favorable opinion from a Doctor of Osteopathy who is also a
Certified Medical Review Officer and who is familiar with toxic chemicals and
places like Kelly Air Force Base, which has had problems with these substances,
the opinion from Dr. Barson, D.O., CMRO, has a higher probative value."

After I received my notice, I contacted Dr. Barson to let him know and to thank
him. He was gratful. I offered to let others know of his services, but he
informed me that he no longer is doing IMO's. What a loss!

Anyway, I hope that this information is helpful. I am working on getting my
research and IMO onto the internet, albeit slowly.

I will be going in for DBS around the middle of August. The neurosurgeon said
that I am an "ideal candidate". Young enough (47) and, otherwise, healthy enough.

--------------------
100% SC Parkinson's Disease
Aid and Attendance

Posts: 20 | From: Missouri | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Testvet
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congrats on the SC and sorry about the PD I wonder what fun your Dr Barson would have with the toxins from Edgewood Arsenal and all of the chemical weapons they were dumping into the aquifer and soil of Edgewood Arsenal it even forced the EPA to order the Army to cap all water wells on the base and in the town of Edgewood Md and pipe in water from the White Mountains...I bet Dr Barson could tear the VA a new one with those chemicals 77 according to the CDC and ASTDR

[ July 10, 2009, 06:30 PM: Message edited by: Testvet ]

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dortchs
Sgt.
Member # 489

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As well as those at Camp Lejeune...

--------------------
100% SC Parkinson's Disease
Aid and Attendance

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mortar man
Col.
Member # 19

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what happened at Camp Lejune is a real bummer, I hope someone is held accountable for the hiding of the info about the water and it's cleaness.

--------------------
May God bless and keep you.

Posts: 218 | From: bunker #19 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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