The information contained on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and not legal advice. Medical professionals did not have the medical capabilities to perform sleep study testing when they served. His eBook, the9 Secrets Strategies for Winning Your VA Disability Claimhas been downloaded more than 300,000 times in the past three years and is the #1 rated free VA disability claims guide for veterans. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. VADisability Benefits for Chronic Fatigue, Fatigue not relieved by sleep or bed rest which was not always present throughout life. These pauses can happen several times an hour when the apnea is severe. High blood pressure or hypertension can be easily developed due to stress acquired in active duty. I spent nearly a yearresearching Veterans and their Sleep Apnea claims. As a fellow disabled Veteran this is shameful and Im on a mission to change it. <>/Parent 3 0 R/Type/Page/Contents 4 0 R/Tabs/S/Resources<>/ProcSet[/PDF/Text]/Font<>>>/MediaBox[0 0 612 792]/Rotate 0>> Chris, thank you for the posts and training videos you are providing to veterans. HtT0DRO`" m)R,aep/>An)`?52nZ^ 3x3Qeo3R}8'h-=d2efHCQ Proving Service-Connection for Sleep Apnea. This will confirm a medical diagnosis and current symptoms, especially if theyve become more severe over time. While proving service-connection for sleep apnea claim accepted is no longer as difficult as it once was, it still is wise to not take your chances and get it right the first time. If you need assistance in appealing your claim for CFS,let us know here! Veterans can also prove service connection for sleep apnea by showing that their sleep apnea began in service using service medical records, or by providing a nexus opinion from a medical professional that links their current diagnosis of sleep apnea to signs or symptoms they experienced in service. This is where I come in. I also have central and obstructive sleep apnea which has been denied service connection. <>stream %%EOF Battle of DUAL-EXPERTS Chris, you called it!!! Secondary Service Connection Whether new and material evidence has been received to reopen a claim of entitlement to service connection for sleep apnea, to include as secondary to the I stated on my retirement physical that I sometimes have trouble sleeping at night. %PDF-1.4 Scenario 3: The Veteran has a diagnosis of Sleep Apnea in the Military Service Records, or during the period of service. This illness can be hard to diagnose due to its seemingly unrelated symptoms, but do not let that discourage you. Like researchers that have been searching for the Holy Grail the harder they look, the less they find. They are ALL experiencing a Perfect Storm of Sleep Apnea problems: breathing disorders, mental health conditions, heart conditions and diabetes are all causing an epidemic of Sleep Apnea in our Vietnam Veterans. VAs expert indicated the RISK-FACTORS of my SP was a results of what he had listed. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are several types of sleep apnea, but the most common is obstructive sleep apnea. Wc%X$(:ss!LCO^?4d *$ These temporary breathing disruptions or lapses can occur from dozens to hundreds of times per night. The VA and frankly most of America still thinksof Sleep Apnea asa condition for theobese male with a big neck. They think wrongly that sleep apnea is not the kind of disability associated with a wounded warrior. If you have this condition, it causes the throat muscles to relax while sleeping. The same can be said about service-connected mental health conditions. I have a diagnosis and a CPAPwhy arent they granting my claim?. I filed NOD in early 2017 request an informal DRO. They were at all times attentive and on top of my case. I absolutely agree I think that Mr. Harris was way out of line, and was not educated about the issue he was commenting on. How is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnosed? * Can I service connect sleep apnea without a sleep study in service? Elizabeth M. Walsh appeals the Board's denial of service connection for hypertension and sleep apnea. I understand you want your VA claim to be done as quickly as possible. If accepted into our ELITE membership program, youll get free up-front access and permission to use $13,119 worth of proprietary VA claim resources, including access to our network of independent medical professionals for medical examinations, disability evaluations, and credible Medical Nexus Letters, which could help you get a HIGHER VA rating in LESS time. * The importance ofamedical expert opinion in your Sleep Apnea claim. I cannot recommend Jason and his staff enough. See id. Second example.lets say the veteran has service connection for PTSD. The VA Claims Medical Team specializes in this, sign up here to take the first step in your VA claim! b4RmeCF$ZelpKT+ise$._DSah#Yxm CPGtef%gMvHPMO_'QXfk3xk9R-bxUqJ4rzWhixgi7-]ng)T2i:P z"/oCw.8{N A\c\FOl>jlh@7p In September 1978, she was granted service connection for bilateral chondromalacia, a breakdown of cartilage in the knee joint that causes pain when bones . Or perhaps when they realize that Sleep Apnea is going to be as big an issue for our current generation of Veterans asAgent Orange related conditions are to Vietnam Veterans, they will take it seriously. Keep us posted Im eager to hear how it turns out! Why? Your email address will not be published. Elizabeth M. Walsh appeals the Board's denial of service connection for hypertension and sleep apnea. FREE tips for veterans to stay protected, calm and informed The BEST Path to Proving Sleep Apnea is Service Connected. case, my case has settled now, and I am very happy for all Jason and his office hard work on my case, he was always there to help me out with any questions that I had or help I needed. fight to get their sleep apnea service-connected. without his BI-PAP MACHINE,one up from CPAP,which i have. In our experience, OSA denials are almost always due to one or more of these five gaps: Fortunately, there are simple strategies you can employ to address these factorseven if the VA has already denied your VA claim for sleep apnea. Estimate your 2023 VA Rating & Compensation for FREE! Emerging research indicates a strong association between PTSD and sleep apnea.The link between sleep apnea and PTSD is likely due to the fact that many factors that aggravate PTSD also aggravate sleep apneaincluding sleep deprivation, insomnia, hyperarousal, and daytime sleepiness. endstream endobj 43 0 obj <>stream We are sorry that this post was not as useful for you! See our tips on how to obtain a credible nexus letter, Both sinusitis and rhinitis are linked to sleep apnea, Emerging research indicates a strong association between PTSD and sleep apnea, You Deserve It: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Veteran Benefits Youve Earned, 9 Secrets Strategies for Winning Your VA Disability Claim, Disrupted breathing in which a persons respiration can become labored or even stop for up to a minute at a time, Limited attention span or difficulty thinking clearly, Snoring, including snoring that is especially loud and involves gasping, choking, or snorting that may cause a person to briefly wake up, #1. Both anxiety and depression can also be linked to sleep apnea. Give us a call at 800-477-9027 to see if we can help you. When I turned my case over to Jason things turned around, QUICK. For example, if a veteran has service connection for diabetes caused by agent orange and it is a well known fact that diabetes can cause sleep apnea, then you should be able to add it to the claim. If you are already service-connected for your knees or your back, you are likely not as active as you once were. Either way, Veterans have an uphill fight to get their sleep apnea service-connected. Veterans with CPAP machines have often fallen into the trap of believing that their use of the CPAP will be enough to qualify their claim with the VA. Our firm was founded in 1986 in Orlando, Florida. endstream endobj 42 0 obj <>stream Lets begin today's post with the Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF): It is HARD to get service connected for Sleep Apnea secondary to Depression. Some people have developed CFS after having a viral infection like Epstein Barr virus, Herpes virus 6, and mouse leukemia virus, but there has been no conclusive evidence. 2020 Strategic Veteran All Rights Reserved. Symptoms of CFS include thinking and memory issues, orthostatic intolerance such as dizziness, weakness, fainting when upright, and much more. In this article, well help you understand the top 5 reasons OSA claims are deniedand even better, what to do about it if youve received a denial for your OSA claim. Some of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea include: People who suffer from sleep apnea are often unaware of the breathing disturbances, finding out about them from a bed partner or roommate. If there is a way for us to improve our claims to get more granted for Vets with "GWI", rest assured, you will find it on the Veterans Law Blog. 8 0 obj * Can Agent Orange cause Sleep Apnea? Thats what you REALLY need you need the RECIPE for proving that sleep apnea is service connected. What about PTSD? I did not have a va physical until about 13 years after seperation from service. Even as Veterans Claims for Sleep Apnea soar, it is clear that theVA DOES NOT understand the full scope of how sleep apnea occurs, medically or factually. Estimate your 2023 VA Rating & Compensation for FREE! However, most of the time, sleep apnea is a secondary claim. Tender lymph nodes usually in the neck and underarms. You may eventually get there on your own, but it may be after a series of decisions by the Regional Office and Board of Veterans Appeals. endstream In recent years this trend has begun to turn around, but it is still one of the more difficult conditions to win a disability compensation claim for. This mistake has led to as much as 76% of sleep apnea claims being rejected (as recently as 2014). Concerningly, it is also one of the conditions most rejected by the VA, as the vast majority are regularly turned down. solid foundation of Lay and Medical Evidence, read hundreds, if not thousands, of Veterans C-Files, Put it to Rest! Take a look at my VA Sleep Apneabook learn all you can about PROVING and IMPROVING your VA Sleep Apnea claim. * SeveralDesert Storm, OIF, and OEF Clients have hadTraumatic Brain Injuries whichinterfere with how their Nervous System works, and as a result, have a different kind of Sleep Apnea (oversimplified, where the brains signals to breathe dont make it through to the lungs). Since 2016, VA Claims Insider has helped thousands of Veterans just like you get the VA rating and compensation they deserve in less time. I recd another denial (3rd) Jun 30, 2017. Your email address will not be published. Translation: 3 out of every 4 of youwill see your sleep apnea claims and appeals deniedunless you learn how to prove your Sleep Apnea Claim the right way. The examiner noted that a major cause of sleep apnea was weight gain and that the veteran weighed 155 pounds in service and 255 pounds in March 2013. Microsoft Word 2010 How to Hire an Attorney For Your VA Claim or Appeal. 4 Common Scenariosfor Proving Sleep Apnea is Service Connected. Veterans Court reminds the VA: the BVA must adjudicate the logically related informal claim. No current medical diagnosis (within the last 12 months), or improper diagnosis, #3. Since that time, we have provided compassionate This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged. I got a 50% rating. In the year thatI spent researching theSleep ApneaField Manual, I learned that there are 39 medical conditions common among Veterans thatcan cause or aggravate sleep apnea. Whats the VAs Problem with Sleep Apnea? I filed to reopen my SA claim in 2016. 4 0 obj There is no cure for Chronic Fatigue syndrome but medications can be prescribed to help with depression along with physical therapy. A 2023 Guide to VA Disability Rates & Pay Schedules, Individual Unemployability Rating Calculator, List of Blue Water Navy Ships Exposed to Agent Orange (Interactive Vietnam Map), Social Security Disability Benefits Guide, Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease (SEID), Presumption of Service Connection for Chronic Diseases, Common Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Then, watch this video of a former C&P examiner revealing her tips for getting your sleep apnea service-connected! If you are interested in avoiding unnecessary delay in your claim and want to do everything you can to maximize your chances of success, it is probably a good idea for you to consult with an accredited veterans disability attorney. In my next article, I will explain another road to service connection: obstructive sleep apnea as a secondary disability. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which breathing is repeatedly interrupted during the course of sleep. For a limited time, you can book a free, no-obligation VA Claim Discovery Call with one of our experts. Need help claiming this crucial part of your claim? .{}p/=jyWG0j#kdLl%*~ P5O1A S-<9o2xmBV1 G(7H^1rnWI\8@I8w But remember the ultimate goal to win your VA disability compensation claim. Those are the ingredients. Of those who suffer from CFS, approximately one out of four will become bedridden or housebound for periods of theirillness. A sleep study is critical to confirming whether you meet the clinical diagnostic criteria for sleep apnea. Because of this all veterans hoping to receive a disability compensation rating from the VA should take the responsibility of connecting the dots for the claim themselves. How to Hire an Attorney For Your VA Claim or Appeal. If youve filed your VA disability claim and have been denied or have received a low ratingor youre unsure how to get startedreach out to us! While an OSA disability claim secondary to sinusitis/rhinitis is an easier path, veterans who are service-connected for PTSD (or other mental health conditions) are eligible for secondary service connection for their sleep apnea, and its possible to achieve an OSA disability claim secondary to PTSD with the right strategy and credible medical evidence. Washington, D.C.: 1776 I Street, NW, 9th Floor, Washington, D.C 20006 Its an entirely different thing to mix those ingredients so that they turn into a cake. You will then need an expert medical opinion that shows these symptoms back then in service were probably sleep apnea even though you had not been diagnosed at the time. Were Veterans helping Veterans Worldwide, and since 2016 weve helped 10,000+ Veterans just like you INCREASE their VA disability rating! 2017-05-30T18:09:36-04:00 about the threat of COVID-19 and Coronavirus. They then tell the VA that they have sleep apnea and a CPAP and hope that service connection for sleep apnea is granted. Strategic Veteran would like to help you sort out what you may be able to claim and the best way to go about it. One of the most straightforward ways to achieve service connection of a particular disease or disability is to show that you had that disease or disability while in service. Winning a VA Sleep Apnea is much harder. *To prove your Sleep Apnea is service connected without a sleep study in the military? Thats what Sleep Apnea does while you are sleeping, you stop breathing. injury case. To prove that sleep apnea is service connected, the smart Veteran is going to have to connect the dots for them. No proof of service connection (missing a nexus letter), #4 Lack of active-duty documentation and medical evidence, #5 Filing for direct service connection vs secondary service-connection (secondary to an already service-connected disability). Source: Department of Veteran Affairs Regional Office New Orleans, LA. Your VA Sleep Apnea Claim, Ill give you the recipe for each of those 4 scenarios. HWnH}W#zx 8Fb$vhjKLdRCR6-kf$}9u/U(XVX= eX5e2by=t-V?l*_?,?C&{u&Q,E1[x3")KYdXD@Q2+x."]}0uLB!_ne\Ya)y,"k"Q>bV7mWnXQn ZDE(WQ 8mSNMj;vwWoDL-y9mxC~`S3t|4[& S/.TWGaxUtbw>Hk :LfNo`BYL2%*{6GuTP rzY9y+%Koa(+Ja.'Xg 1 0 obj Most people with CFS seem to have an impaired immune system which is thought to possibly be the cause of having CFS. Dont make the mistake so many other veterans have. I read hundreds of cases. 3 Steps to Veteran Disability Benefits for Sleep Apnea, 6 Tips for Your C&P Exam for Sleep Apnea Secondary to PTSD, 3 Ways to Get a VA Rating for Insomnia (The Insiders Guide). Then present the proper records for service connection with a professional opinion on the Nexus of the sleep apnea. Click Go Elite Now below to get started today and a member of our team will be in touch within minutes. You can subscribe to his Veterans Disability channel on YouTube. Our process takes the guesswork out of filing a VA disability claim and supports you every step of the way in building a fully-developed claim (FDC)so you can increase your rating faster! Its almost as much work and it can often take as much dedication. Even if youve had a sleep study before, its important to get one done within the 12 months prior to your VA claim. Both sinusitis and rhinitis are linked to sleep apnea. Favorable BVA Case Law Precedent Example #2: Chicago, IL: 332 S. Michigan Avenue, Floors 8 and 9, Chicago, IL 60604 And then in three months, I got a response back, and it was a favorable response, and that just, that just blew me away. Want More Information about VA Sleep Apnea? about the threat of COVID-19 Cincinnati, OH: 300 E Business Way, Suite 200, Summit Woods Corporate Center, Cincinnati, OH, 45241 If you get that, then you should be able to establish direct service connection and receive VA disability for sleep apnea. While its not really hard to prove service-connection of your sleep apnea, its most certainly not easy: you are going to have to put in some work. The cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is unknown; however, there are a few theories as to what may cause this condition. Your airway narrows and closes, leading to pauses in the breathing cycle. Long term chronic sleep apnea can cuse the heart to work harder, thus causing it to enlarge. Follow the steps below to remedy the above-listed typical reasons for denial, and youll be much closer to a winning claim! There are 3 things that the human body cannot live or function without: Blood/Oxygen, Food/Water and Sleep. Also see our post What is a Service-Connected Disability? Philadelphia, PA: 1 International Plaza, Suite 550, Philadelphia, PA, 19113 If that is similar to your situation, how do you show that link (nexus) between what was going on with you during service and the actual diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea you now have? Medications can be prescribed that help with depression caused by living with CFS, also low dose antidepressants have been shown to improve sleep patterns. FromApril 2013 to April 2014, the BVA denied 76% of Veterans Sleep Apnea appeals. I believe that the VA and BVA do not take Sleep Apnea seriously. Along with the record of the potential cause must also be a proven medical link between sleep apnea and the occurrence. uuid:9ecae647-b430-492b-9ebf-3254b1d19b42 If youre experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, and suspect your sleep apnea arose from your time on active duty (or was or aggravated by a currently service-connected disability), you should consider seeking a diagnosis and pursuing compensation for this disability. We cant possibly cover each of those and the ways to service connect all of them in this one article. For doing an awesome job. Unfortunately, VA does not always apply the law correctly. You do not have to be prescribed a CPAP machine to be service-connected for sleep apnea. Everyone I came in contact with there was very nice. Even with that little bit of extra information, almost allVeterans are still being denied service connection for sleep apnea. Learn how your comment data is processed. New Rule allows Presumptive Service Connection for Veterans particulate matter (burn pit) claims. endobj Im 50% connected with PTSD and currently have an appeal in for 100% on PTSD. (In many cases, amedical expert report or opinion may be crucial to success). Thousands of other Veterans in our Community are here for you. Were Veterans, just like you, whove learned how to navigate within the VA system. In a study of veterans, PTSD symptom severity increased the risk of screening positive for OSA. While youmay have been a loud snorer or had other sleep difficulties in service that are normally associated with sleep apnea, if you are like most service members you probablydid not undergo a sleep study and get a formal diagnosis before your discharge from service. Therefore, sleep apnea can be filed secondary to either a musculoskeletal condition with weight gain or a mental health condition with weight gain. Learn what youve been missingso you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation you deserve! A couple things you mention are worth exploring: Damage to the nasal or breathing passages, like chronic sinusitis or bronchitis, can cause OSA. Since 2016, VA Claims Insider has helped thousands of Veterans just like you get the VA rating and compensation they deserve in less time. My expert agreed to write a rebuttal opinion to the VAs expert. I dont know if Im authorize a second run at the DRO or go straight to BVA. Without a CPAP machine, the VA assigns a 30% rating. The independent opinion of a private medical professional can also influence the C&P examiners medical opinion, as well as the VA rating officials final disability decision. You can also check out our 2022 Facebook live video on the Top 5 Causes for OSA Denials and How to Fix Them! Hear from fellow Veterans just like you, with many of our Veteran Success Managers having gone through our programs. Not only does the VA provide compensation, but once you receive a service-connection for it, it provides a way to get other disabilities to service-connected. This disorder can also lead to more complications like depression, social isolation, lifestyle restrictions, and an increase in absences from work/school. I talked to several doctors and sleep experts. BVA Decision When filing a VAdisability Claim for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome there are specific things the VA has to see before service connection can be considered and disability compensation granted. put your Sleep Apnea Claim together right. And you are going to have to presentit neatly andpersuasivelyto the VA. I have sleep apnea diagnosed by the VA sleep study. I talked to hundreds of Veterans and read their C-Files to see where they went wrong. Are you a veteran who suffers from sleep apnea? Cardiomegaly enlargement of the heart makes me thing of a damage resulting from a chronic sleep apnea condition. Veterans Court reminds the VA: the BVA must adjudicate the logically related informal claim. 38 U.S.C.A. With lay evidence AND medical evidence. This is because sleep apnea is abnormally difficult to prove as a disability that is service-connected. If you were diagnosed with this condition while in the military, you have a straight forward shot for service connection. However, there are more causes of Cardiomegaly than sleep apnea, so you will want a doctors medical opinoino as to whether your Cardiomegaly is related to a chronic sleep breathing disorder, or has some other origin. I recommend Perkins Law Firm. Winning a VA claim to service connect sleep apnea is hard. The Veteran was granted entitlement to service connection for major depressive disorder in a May 2016 rating decision. Below is the schedule for rating disability for Chronic Fatigue Sundrome. . As youve seen, claims for obstructive sleep apnea can be trickyyet important to pursue if youre suffering from this disability, so you can get the benefits you deserve and care you need. See R. at 8-9. First of all, lets explore a little about this common disability in veterans, so you understand the condition and why its important you pursue your claim and get the benefits you deserve. I have tried to connect OSA secondary to chronic sinusitis which has also been denied. Allergies or sensitivities to foods, odors, chemicals, or noise. I have sleep apnea and emphysema. I haven't met anybody, who's been in the military, who's worked with the VA who couldn't benefit from this service. DRO sided with VA expert (not surprise) who claimed SA was least likely as not occurred or caused by service, moreover, VA expert justified opinion by THE FOLLOWINGS;(time 12yrs since retirement, age 50 at the time of sleep study, and weight gain ?). You are going to have to think through your case as objectively as you possibly can. Headaches which are new or have become worse. Cleveland, OH: 600 Superior Ave. East, Fifth Third Building, Suite 1300, Cleveland, OH, 44114 IN THE APPEAL OF . Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call. Andmy sleep study was not done in the military.. Finally, please remember that email may not be secure and may be subject to review by unwanted intruders. Nexus is simply a connection or series of connections linking two or more things. Many civilian doctors have NO CLUE what a Nexus letter is or the importance of it! Brian Reese here, Air Force service-disabled Veteran and Founder @ VA Claims Insider. Hot Dogs for Heroes 4th of July Event This Thursday! You will need to follow one of the paths to service connection, which will likely require lay evidence and expert medical evidence. If you are a veteran and have been struggling with sleep problems, you may wonder if a VA sleep study is the right solution. Check out the Sleep Apnea Field Manual. Richmond, VA: 7400 Beaufont Springs Drive, Suite 300, Richmond, VA, 23225 Learn more about us, Veterans Disability Claim Youre arent alone. Instead, lets focus on one type of sleep apnea claim our firm has recently worked on to illustrate just oneof the ways to prove service connection of obstructive sleep apnea.