BVA–OPEN MOUTH, SHOOT FOOT


FROM THE DAVID KORESH MEMORIAL  VARO IN WHACKO, TEXAS

635646931319099161-veterans-administration-logo

VA examiners, over the decades I have witnessed the phenomenon, have reached conclusions no one else in the medical field could hope to. With perfect aplomb, they make pronouncements that are far reaching and totally unsupported by fact. I do give them credit for their imagination but the damage it wreaks on Vet’s claims can have serious, long term implications. Considering 85% of all claims are denied, it behooves VA to examine the M21 1MR process that drives such a high error rate. Here is a case in point.

Virginia Girard Brady VA Dragonslayer

Virginia Girard Brady
VA Dragonslayer

I always get a bang out of Virginia Girard-Brady, Vet’s attorney extraordinaire. Her office is prolific and successful in pursuit of claimants’ appeals. She always has tremendous success with HCV claims and here she hits one out of the park. However, her case was made for her, rather than by her,  due to the bumbling VA examiner who couldn’t string two sentences together and come up with a viable denial. The sum of the VA’s attempted denial consisted of 1) a positive nexus at worst and b) a misreading of 38 CFR 3.301(c) (1). While painful and ill-advised, the contraction of a venereal disease will never rise to the level of willful misconduct. Stupidity, yes but always in the Line of Duty!

This sounds like the semantic meanderings of someone far afield who cannot bring themselves to make a clear pronouncement pro or con. In the process, they accidentally give equipoise to the very arguments they set out to demolish.

steel-toed bootThe examiner opined that the “Vet was not treated for hepatitis or had any symptoms of hepatitis in his STR. He denied that he was jaundiced. The air jet vaccine gun is plausible way [sic] of his getting this. However, he has other risk factors, like h/o multiple sexual partners w/ STD. The air jet injector gun is associated with hepatitis B transmission (see http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17879809). Hep C has similar transmission. The June 29, 2004, VBA Fast Letter (04-13) says that this is plausible. However, the vet also had multiple sexual partners which is also risk factor for developing Hep C. So the airjet gun, may have been the cause of his Hep C. This may be related to his military service, but he has other strong risk factors that make this less likely than not that this is service connected.” The examiner provides no rationale for why the Veteran’s multiple sexual partners is a more likely risk factor. The Board finds this opinion to be contradictory in that the VA examiner found that the air jet gun theory is a plausible basis for the Veteran hepatitis, but he also found that the Veteran’s multiple sexual partners may have been the cause of the hepatitis. The Board finds that this examiner’s opinion places whether the Veteran’s hepatitis B and C were caused by an air jet gun into equipoise as it both supports the theory and also finds another basis for the Veteran’s hepatitis. The question of a nexus now in equipoise, the Board finds that 38 U.S.C.A. § 5107(b) is controlling and that the benefit of the doubt should be provided to the Veteran, and thus service connection for hepatitis B and C is warranted.

(As an aside, I want everyone to take note. I began referring to the “air inoculation device” as a jet gun in my blogs back in 2008. With great pride, I see the term jet  gun  finally catching on.)

Assuming the Whacko’s  VA examiner in this case was also pontificating the same day on other claims from our Texas Johnny Vet, how about a few of these gems.

DVT and/or Peripheral Vascular disease

 

45-inch-hole-plus-peripheral-traumaIn the Board remand, the examiner was directed to expressly address and reconcile the contemporaneous in service findings of lower extremity pain, tenderness, and swelling documented, the SSA determinations showing that his DVT has rendered him unemployable since February 1995, and the lay statements attesting to a history of “blood clots” and related peripheral vascular disease symptoms persisting since his active service. See August 2013 Appellate Brief, March 2010 Statement from D. McGee. The examiner’s opinion consisted of only this remark “Vet checked no to cramps in his legs on his discharge physical. So his legs did not bother him. He was seen for acute knee and ankle injuries, however, there is no documentation of blood clots in his STR. His knees or ankles didn’t seem to bother him at discharge either. Therefore, the evidence is lacking that his DVT is service connected.” In addressing the DVT issue the VA examiner only wrote “Vet’s STR does not have evidence that his current chronic DVT is related to another service condition. His STR does not have any evidence of peripheral vascular disease.”

The vernacular of the examiner(s) is uniquely the same  again here.

Respiratory Disorder

dorsal aspect showing expansion of projectileIn the 2014 remand, the respiratory examiner was directed to expressly address and reconcile the contemporaneous in service findings of congestion and wheezing, the post service evidence of treatment for chronic bronchitis beginning in the mid-1990s, and the lay evidence regarding a history of recurrent coughing and related respiratory complaints persisting since his active service. The examiner wrote “The vet had one episode of wheezing on 5/24/77 which was attributed to a “cold.” He did not have any other episodes in his STR. He also said he did not have asthma on his discharge physical. The examiner did not note any wheezing either. So the evidence is lacking that his asthma is service connected. The Board notes that the VA examiner did not comment as instructed on the chronic bronchitis beginning in the mid-1990s or address the lay evidence of continuous symptomatology. Therefore, the Board finds that the Board’s remand directive was not fulfilled.

These are the ruminations of Veterans Law Judge Gail E. Strommen. If this is the new standard by which we will be judged, God forbid. We’re heading into a perfect storm of remands in search of coherent VA examiners who can read at a 9th grade level and remember to fetch the pertinent contemporary records before ruminating. Once they analyze each individual’s claims, they will be required to opine and subsequently support their findings or this just becomes another exercise in stupidity. We, who live trailer parks or under posh, well-furnished overpasses, are required to produce cogent, well-reasoned treatises on why we are afflicted with disease and injury. Further, we are required to tie it to our service. Lastly, we are precluded from making any observations requiring medical expertise in diagnosing our ills.

Apparently, VA is not bound by these same codicils.

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About asknod

VA claims blogger
This entry was posted in BvA HCV decisions, HCV Risks (documented), Jetgun BvA Decisions, Jetgun Claims evidence, KP Veterans, Nexus Information, Tips and Tricks and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to BVA–OPEN MOUTH, SHOOT FOOT

  1. Skywalker says:

    Wow, that toe looks really, really bad, like a shark took a bite out of it or something. Hopefully he can get an amplified rating like SMC for that eventually.

    • John King says:

      I had a simple staff infection in my foot and I almost lost my foot. My foot looked horrible, but compared to that toe I was in pretty good shape. If he does not lose his foot it will be surprising. If he has DMII the wound will probably not heal. Once the circulation to your feet get that bad amputation is usually the result because of risk of systemic infection and gangrene. Tissue dies or infection enters the entire blood stream. If VA had any hint of this guy’s condition and dropped the ball that is one of the grossest cases of malpractice I have seen for a guy who is supposed to have access to the “World’s Greatest Health Care System…..The VA”. People with PAD, PF and or DMII who do not have access to medical care end up in that kind of condition and have limbs amputated every day in poverty struck communities. This guy had access to the VA. For this to happen is an indictment against the VA health care “system”. I would say What System?

  2. Alex Graham is a finagler says:

    You are very arrogant and narcissistic. The term jet gun was used well before your blog.

  3. john king says:

    VA wants me to drive 40 miles round trip to give urine sample just to prove for one million time that I am not selling my pain meds and living the high life off a one month script of oxycodone. I told them since VA has me officially as Housebound they should come to my house to get bloodwork and urine. When all is said and done VA is just a criminal enterprise and FBI should use RICCO Act to destroy the VARO system of C&P exams and chronic under treatment and malpractice regarding our vets. VA has big sign on the front of my VAMC ” Look here to see the cost of War” or some such BS. I would say “Look here to see cost of government corruption, neglect, and l fraud”. Prez Lincoln said paraphrasing ” The people should bear the cost to take care of wounded vets of Civil War”. VA with connivance of congress reads that to mean “We should look for every opportunity to screw every veteran and his/her spouse to the wall when they ask for medical care or compensation. They were stupid enough to allow themselves to get enlisted into the military so &^%$ them”.

    • asknod says:

      You’re gonna love this John. The idea of one of those pain contracts has finally worked it’s way into Obamacare. I’m on Medicare as of this month and just signed one. So they call me up and say “Report for Operation Golden Flow”. Roger that. Next morning I proceeded to the local hospital lab and produced as ordered. Get the call the next day that there are no opioids in my blood. Ruh oh Rorge. I ate them. So I google Demerol and it’s a non opioid painkiller. Called the nurse back and explained. A day later they said they may still ask for testing to make sure “I’m not buying opioids to supplement my own pain meds.” I don’t make this stuff up.

      • john king says:

        AskNod

        It will just get worse and worse. I live in Florida which is ground zero for pill mills and people dying from drug overdoses. The VA just assumes we are all doctor shopping for opioids and VA is just our first stop. This has been going on for ten years in my case. When I get my printed labs I see that 90% of the written material is one million and one ways to trap drug abusers and only tiny bit that refers to my glucose levels and all the other great stuff secondary to AO. They have changed my opiate pain meds many times from methadone to morphine to Fentanyl, Vicodin, oxycodone, and then they start over again with same failed attempts to find illegal drugs or alcohol in my system. If I can’t pee on demand they find that “suspicious”. If I pee too much that means I am trying to dilute the urine to hide other illegal drugs or fact I am doctor shopping. The private pain doctors I had were worse and more terrified of DEA than the VA which is pretty terrified for sure number one G.I. The VA also hates drugs like Clonazepam which is anti-anxiety drug as you know. If you suffer chronic pain, depression and anxiety then you are really in deep shit because that is absolute proof you are about to OD while trying to sell your VA drugs to get street drugs. All they care about is CYA. I go along with the broken system because I need pain relief so I can at least function on level of 90 year old. How are your VA lawyer/advocate classes going? My email is jking3@tampabay.rr.com if you want to drop me a line. I see poor bastards at Hadit are still suffering what we went through 40 years ago with the VA. Somebody is going to do something rash who has nothing left to lose at my VAMC or VARO. I just hope I am not there when it happens. I am always at the wrong place at right time or something like that.

        John

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