FROM THE EMERALD CITY
VARO IN OZ, KANSAS
If you throw enough flavors of Hep at the VA wall, something’s gotta stick, right? Dorothy and Toto make the pilgrimage to DC in pursuit of this one. She has hurled them all at one time or another in the past and lost without appealing them. This time she won. Or did she? The Acting Veterans Law Judge, Demetrios G. Orfanoudis, has artfully granted her service connection for acute Hepatitis A. She had it in service and he is more than willing to grant that she did. File this one under Be Careful What You Wish For.
One small problem. As Hepatitis A is an acute illness and has resolved, Dorothy is in for a rude surprise. She is destined to win the empty ice creme cone. This won’t occur until it is returned to the Wichita, Kansas Regional Office for a rating. The moaning and the caterwauling will then ensue. This is what happens when you have the DAV driving your claim. They are enamoured of the win. What you actually win in terms of a ratings percentage is immaterial in their mind. A win is a win. It improves the bottom line and the fund drives when you have a higher success rate to brag about.
This is a sad case since hepatitis, especially E, is a risk factor for fetal death and maternal death. To avoid hep E, pregnant women must be sure to cook all meat like pork to the safe temperatures. Stillbirths and hepatitis are not just a problem in the developing world.
For free info. Lancet has published a series on stillbirths (registration required.)