Sleep Apnea and the Veterans Administration

This area is for Sleep Apnea questions and general Sleep Apnea Discussions.


Postby Mr Z » Mon Dec 15, 2008 2:25 pm

White Beard wrote:I'm sorry that last post (guest) is from me I forgot to log in, White Beard


Did anyone answer you question? I'm active duty army with CPAP and O2 and was curious also if having the addition of O2 increases your VA disability. The additional equipment is NOT cheap.
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Postby PanMan » Tue Dec 16, 2008 10:38 pm

the VA covers the equipment and supplies, but there is no additional increase in compensation (still 50%).

Hope that this helps

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Postby SleepHard » Wed Dec 17, 2008 10:18 am

Fellow victim of the VA system, reporting. :lol:
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Postby Mr Z » Wed Dec 17, 2008 3:23 pm

;-)
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Postby SleepHard » Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:31 am

Mr Z wrote:;-)
gotta love it. 8-)
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???

Postby Organistas » Fri Feb 13, 2009 7:10 pm

I had a sleep study in August of 2008, I was never notified by the hospital that I had sleep apnea. I found out from my flight surgeon just 2 weeks ago. Anyway, now, I been scheduled to do another sleep over with a CPAP. I am curious about the benefits or how it will affect my retirement in August of 2009. Any ideas on disability or benefits? Any info, please contact me.
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Organistas

Postby JimK » Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:22 pm

SA is a 50% rate by the VA if you use a CPAP
Started 22 Nov 07
AHI 129, O2 level 70%, 2 obstructive SA, 9 mixed apnea, 14 hypopneas, 607 central apnea
Currently using a ResMed VPAP Adapt SV, set at 10EEP and PS of 5 to PS of 10
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Postby Organistas » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:30 pm

50% huh? Excuse my not knowing but, it's more confussing than ever. When it is said, say with SA, what is 50%? Is that a tax free deduction? Monetary comp? I hear so many things from different people and I am starting to get the feeling that some of my guys lie to me just to make themselves look like they are in a better cituation or just plainly so I won't judge them in a negative way.
Thanks again for your help. -Raul
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%

Postby JimK » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:54 pm

The VA pays disability compensation rates, 10% is $123 and 50% is $770, a sliding scale it is tax free. You can find this on line at teh VA web site.
Started 22 Nov 07
AHI 129, O2 level 70%, 2 obstructive SA, 9 mixed apnea, 14 hypopneas, 607 central apnea
Currently using a ResMed VPAP Adapt SV, set at 10EEP and PS of 5 to PS of 10
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Determining onset of Sleep Apnea for VA

Postby Scoubby » Tue Feb 24, 2009 9:28 pm

Before I left the Navy in Nov 2007 I was seen by the flight surgeon several times in the Summer regarding sleep problems (insomnia). He gave me lunesta one time and wrote a prescription for a bed the next time. He asked me if I gasped for air at night and I said no, which is true. I guess that was his way of ruling out SA. Anyway, I was never refered for a sleep study. The symptoms were still there when I got out but with the transition and all my sleeping problem wasn't a high priority as I thought it was more related to stress at that particular time.

Seven months later my civilian doctor refers me for a sleep study and I was diagnosed with severe obstructive SA. I now use a CPAP. I turned the study and diagnosis into the VA within the 1 year timeframe. However, they shot it down because they said I didn't prove the symptons were present while on active duty 7 months earlier. Now I'm having a tough time getting a doctor to write an opiniion stating that the symptons I have now are the same ones that were present while I was on active duty. I contacted 2 pulmonologists and they both said they cannot determine the exact onset of SA. They said that without even taking into consideration my active duty medical record.

How do I get this documented? I"m currently on Tricare Prime but they referred me to the 2 doctors who refused to render an opinion. Anything I do know will be out of pocket as Tricare will not give me another referral. I'm working with an AMVETS rep and he said my next step is to get that letter. However, that is now becoming increasingly difficult.

Any and all help would be greatly appreciated.
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Postby Mr Z » Wed Mar 04, 2009 12:27 pm

You need to see a pulmonologist with a specialty in sleep related disorders. Also, the VA, just like the Army, is quick to have a sleep related disorder reviewed by a generic pulmonologist - reason being here we are in 2009 and IMO sleep related problems are still one of the most misunderstood, trivialized sicknesses. Because of this YOU are going to have to make sure the medical community is "walking the line".
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Postby SleepHard » Wed Mar 04, 2009 5:04 pm

Got that right, Mr. Zulu. I just last night had a civilian sleep study done because bOgus diagnosis and non-treatment since my first "sleep study" at the VA in 2002. VA won't pay for my civilian sleep study, so I'm just happy to also have Medicare. All the best with it, Scoubby, I hope you get that letter and treatment.
Last edited by SleepHard on Thu Mar 05, 2009 1:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Scoubby » Wed Mar 04, 2009 10:40 pm

Mr Z wrote:You need to see a pulmonologist with a specialty in sleep related disorders. Also, the VA, just like the Army, is quick to have a sleep related disorder reviewed by a generic pulmonologist - reason being here we are in 2009 and IMO sleep related problems are still one of the most misunderstood, trivialized sicknesses. Because of this YOU are going to have to make sure the medical community is "walking the line".


I talked to 2 Sleep Disorder Pulmonologist and neither one wanted to offer a medical opinion. They both declined without even looking at my military medical record. I guess I need to keep trying other doctors out there. How much of a leap of faith is it going to be for a doctor to connect my severe OSA to when I was in the Navy 7 months earlier. I don't think that condition occurred overnight. Is there any research that looks at the onset of OSA?
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Re: Determining onset of Sleep Apnea for VA

Postby Mr Z » Thu Mar 05, 2009 1:51 pm

Scoubby wrote: However, they shot it down because they said I didn't prove the symptons were present while on active duty 7 months earlier.

Didn't prove you had symptoms? Your original post stated you saw a doctor for sleep related issues on more than one occasion - just because your Navy MD misdiagnosed your sickness doesn't give the VA grounds for dismissal. Challenge it! For all you know the "approving/disapproving" authority could of been some jaded " I've been looking at case files for thirty years and I'm burnt out" nurse or again a general practioning physician (not a specialist!!)! Don’t think for a second the government sets aside a select team of experts to work for you 24/7. Your just another number, but like they say ...the squeaky wheel gets the grease or in your case nothing if you don’t take an aggressive stance on entitlements YOU deserve! I’m not implying being an a** with the VA or other entity. Don’t burn any bridges! Just be firm and unrelenting! :twisted:
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Re: Sleep Apnea and the Veterans Administration

Postby ajunkajun » Fri Apr 10, 2009 10:37 am

QUESTION wrote:I was diagnosed with Apnea last week. I am a disable veteran with a 20% rating for Plantar Fasciitis. Do I apply for additional disabilty for sleep apnea or should I apply for it as a secondary condition because of my planters faciitis?



Welcome

My understanding is that you would have had to have had some sort of symptoms or complications associated with apnea before you gotten out of the military. To say it is secondary to plantar fasciitis, that would be a difficult one to prove. It will be totally up to you to prove the link between your foot issue and apnea.

In my case, I had a fusion of C5-C7 in my C-Spine. They broke my neck and put in metal plates and pieces from a cadeaver, but the doctors are telling me there is no correlation between the work done in my neck and my sleep apnea.
That is what brought me here.

Let me give you an example of when something is "secondary" to a service connected disability. In my case, I am in chronic pain because of my neck problems and take narcotics. Now I suffer from depression because of my associated side effects of the narcotics I take for my neck. Because of issue A, it caused issue B so to speak.

To answer your other question, MEB = Medical Evaluation Board It is the board that decides you are fit for continued military service or do you need to be medically seperated/discharged.

Hope that helps and Good Luck!!
Ajunkajun
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