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Peripheral Neuropathy


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16 replies to this topic

#1 oldsol423

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 06:01 PM

I am a Nam Vet... 67&68 (Tet) 50% ptsd. 10 % burns, 10% tinnitus. I have been told I have peripheral neuropathy also..... pains in the thigh and numbness in the hands and feet.... should i file a claim for this? if so. Is this caused by agent orange? How much is this claim worth? or is it worth filing? Looking forward to any answers would be helpful....... thanks.

#2 Guest_allan_*GuestMember

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 06:58 PM

Hello oldsol423,

Welcome Home!



I've seen some leading neurologist at a VA research facility that has specialty clinics, for AO or other enviromental exposures. The one that diagnosed me with TBI knew nothing about military hazzards or exposures to toxins.

Before you file, get copies of everything before the records vanish. You can ask the Dr who provides the diagnoses for PN to state on a more probable than not bases, AO caused the PN, the effects of PN & the medication for it on your body & life & that it's due to your service in Vietnam.



Good luck



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]

I am a Nam Vet... 67&68 (Tet) 50% ptsd. 10 % burns, 10% tinnitus. I have been told I have peripheral neuropathy also..... pains in the thigh and numbness in the hands and feet.... should i file a claim for this? if so. Is this caused by agent orange? How much is this claim worth? or is it worth filing? Looking forward to any answers would be helpful....... thanks.



#3 Guest_allan_*GuestMember

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 07:10 PM

Department of Veterans Affairs VHA HANDBOOK 1302.01
Veterans Health Administration Transmittal Sheet
Washington, DC 20420 September 5, 2006

AGENT ORANGE HEALTH REGISTRY (AOR) PROGRAM PROCEDURES
TO INCLUDE ALL VETERANS EXPOSED TO AGENT ORANGE
AND SPECIAL HEALTH CARE BENEFITS FOR VIETNAM VETERANS’ CHILDREN
http://www1.va.gov/a...OOK13022006.pdf

#4 john999

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 07:16 PM

If you have DMII you can get service connected for PN easily. If you don't have some AO disease that causes PN there is little hope of being service connected for it after 35 years. The standards for getting SC'ed for PN due to AO alone are impossible. You must have shown symptoms within one year of exposure and the symtoms must have resolved within two years. This is nuts since no one who still has PN can qualify for SC.

#5 Guest_allan_*GuestMember

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 07:22 PM

Agent Orange and Vietnam Veterans
http://www.vba.va.go...fits/herbicide/



Edited by allan, 19 September 2006 - 07:24 PM.


#6 terrysturgis

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 07:26 PM

oldsol, As John999 said if you have DMII the PN is a secondary condition of Diabetes. My percentage of Service Connection disability for PN is quite high and helped me get to the 100% P&T level.
The question we need answered is do you have DMII? Let us know, Thanks! Terry Sturgis

#7 Guest_allan_*GuestMember

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 07:32 PM

Agent Orange Brief



Prepared by the Environmental Agents Service (131)

D5 VA Central Office, Washington, DC 20420 August 2005







AGENT ORANGE AND PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY

What is peripheral neuropathy?



Peripheral neuropathy is a nervous system condition that causes numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness by involvement of the peripheral nervous system, that is, nerves outside the brain and spinal cord.



Why are Vietnam veterans concerned about peripheral neuropathy? Does Agent Orange/dioxin cause it?



Some Vietnam veterans have been diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy and others have expressed concern about developing this condition. Some scientific literature has linked peripheral neuropathy to exposure to dioxin, which was contained in Agent Orange.



On May 23, 1991, the Veterans' Advisory Committee on Environmental Hazards considered the relationship between exposure to dioxin and the development of this condition. The Committee concluded that there is a "significant statistical association" between peripheral neuropathy and exposure to dioxin. The Committee qualified this opinion, stating that the association could be said to exist in the absence of exposure to chemical substances known to cause this disorder. Committee members indicated that other risk factors that must be considered are age and whether the individual suffers from other known causes of peripheral neuropathy such as diabetes, alcoholism, or Guillain-Barre syndrome. The Committee also advised that the disorder must become manifest within ten years of the last known dioxin exposure.



What did the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) do in response to the Advisory Committee's finding and the subsequent report released by the National Academy of Sciences in July 1993?



On July 1, 1991, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Derwinski announced that VA will propose rules granting service-connected disability status to certain veterans with peripheral neuropathy. Proposed rule implementing the Secretary's decision was published for public comment in the Federal Register in January 1992. (See 57 Fed. Reg. 2236, January 21, 1992). It was anticipated that the final rule would be published in 1993. However, in July 1993, when the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released its comprehensive report, entitled Veterans and Agent Orange - Health Effects of Herbicides Used in Vietnam, peripheral neuropathy was not included in the category "sufficient evidence of an association" or even "limited/suggestive evidence of an association." Rather, the NAS reviewers concluded that there is "inadequate or insufficient evidence to determine whether an association exists between exposure to herbicides (2,4-D; 2,4,5-T and its contaminant TCDD; cacodylic acid; and picloram) and disorders of the peripheral nervous system." The NAS report added, "Although many case reports suggest that an acute or subacute peripheral neuropathy can develop with exposure to TCDD and related chemicals, reports with comparison groups do not offer clear evidence that TCDD exposure is associated with chronic peripheral neuropathy. The most rigorously conducted studies argue against a relationship between TCDD or herbicides and chronic neuropathy."



Acute is used to mean immediate effect, as opposed to chronic that means an effect not appearing immediately.



VA asked the NAS, in its follow-up report, to consider the relationship between exposure to herbicides and the subsequent development of the acute and subacute effects of peripheral neuropathy (as compared to the chronic effects, which were focused on in the initial report).



In January 1994, VA published a notice in the Federal Register that Secretary Brown has determined that a presumption of service connection based on exposure to herbicides used in Vietnam is not warranted for a long list of conditions identified in the NAS report. Peripheral neuropathy was included in this list. (See 59 Fed. Reg. 341, January 4, 1994).



What did the NAS 1996 update conclude about peripheral neuropathy?



When the NAS reviewers separately reviewed chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy and acute and subacute transient peripheral neuropathy, they found that there was still inadequate or insufficient evidence to determine whether an association exists between exposure to herbicides and chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy. On the other hand, they reported that there is some evidence to suggest that "neuropathy of acute or subacute onset may be associated with herbicide exposure." They included acute and subacute transient peripheral neuropathy among those conditions they placed in their second category "limited/suggestive evidence of an association." (Chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy remained in category three, "inadequate/insufficient evidence to determine whether an association exists.")



What was VA’s response to the NAS 1996 finding about acute and subacute transient peripheral neuropathy?



After careful review of the report, Secretary Brown decided that VA should add acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy (when manifested within one year of exposure) to the list of conditions recognized for presumption of service connection for Vietnam veterans based on exposure to herbicides. President Clinton announced this, along with other, decisions, at the White House, on May 28, 1996. The proposed rule was published for public comment in the Federal Register in August 1996. (See 61 Fed. Reg. 41368, August 8, 1996). The final rule was published in the Federal Register in November 1996. (See 61 Fed. Reg. 57587, November 7, 1996).



What did subsequent NAS updates conclude about peripheral neuropathy?



With regard to chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy, the 1998 report stated, "No new information has appeared in the intervening two years that alters this (the 1996) conclusion."



With regard to acute and subacute transient peripheral neuropathy, the 1998 update reported, "The committee is aware of no new publications that bear on this issue. If TCDD were associated with the development of transient acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy, the disorder would become evident shortly after exposure. The committee knows of no evidence that new cases developing long after service in Vietnam are associated with herbicide exposure."



In update 2000: For chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy, there is only inadequate or insufficient evidence to determine whether an association exists between exposure to dioxin or the herbicides studied in this report. NAS found that there was limited/suggestive evidence of an association between exposure to the herbicides considered in this report and acute or subacute transient peripheral neuropathy. The evidence regarding association was drawn from occupation and other studies in which subjects were exposed to a variety of herbicides and herbicides components. Information available to NAS continued to support this conclusion.



The 2002 update concluded that there is inadequate or insufficient evidence to determine whether an association exists between the chemicals studied and chronic persistent peripheral neuropathy. In relation to acute and subacute transient peripheral neuropathy, the NAS concluded that there was limited or suggestive evidence of an association between chemical exposure and the disease, as stated in the update 1996 report. Update 2002 also indicated that if TCDD were associated with the development of transient acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy, the disorder would become evident shortly after exposure. The NAS was unaware of any evidence that new cases developing long after service in Vietnam that could be attributed to herbicide exposure in Vietnam.



In Update 2004, the NAS concluded that there is "limited or suggestive" evidence of an association between exposure to the components of interest and early onset transient peripheral neuropathy. However, there is "inadequate or insufficient" evidence to determine an association between exposure to the compound of interest and delayed or persistent peripheral neuropathy.



Where can a veteran get additional information about peripheral neuropathy?



Information regarding peripheral neuropathy and related matters can be obtained at VA medical center libraries, from the Environmental Health Clinicians at every VA medical center, or from the Environmental Agents Service (131), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20420.

Where can a veteran obtain additional information about Agent Orange–related issues?


The following Agent Orange Brief fact sheets (including the one you are reading) are available on the World Wide Web at www.va.gov/AgentOrange: A1.Agent Orange - General Information; A2.Agent Orange Class Action Lawsuit; B1.Agent Orange Registry Program; B2.Agent Orange – Health Care Eligibility; B3.Agent Orange and VA Disability Compensation; B4.VA Information Resources on Agent Orange and Related Matters; C1.Agent Orange – The Problem Encountered in Research; C2.Agent Orange and Vietnam Related Research – VA Projects; C3.Agent Orange and Vietnam Related Research – Non-VA Projects; D1.Agent Orange and Birth Defects; D2.Agent Orange and Chloracne; D3.Agent Orange and Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma; D4.Agent Orange and Soft Tissue Sarcomas; D5.Agent Orange and Peripheral Neuropathy; D6.Agent Orange and Hodgkin’s Disease; D7.Agent Orange and Porphyria Cutanea Tarda; D8.Agent Orange and Multiple Myeloma; D9.Agent Orange and Respiratory Cancers; D10.Agent Orange and Prostate Cancer; D11.Agent Orange and Spina Bifida; D12.Agent Orange and Diabetes; and D13.Agent Orange and Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. Hard copies can be obtained from local VA medical centers or from the VA Central Office at the Environmental Agents Service (131) Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20420.


At the same Web site you will find copies of past and current issues of the "Agent Orange Review" newsletter and other items of interest.





This fact sheet was prepared in August 2005 and does not include any subsequent developments.







SOURCE:

http://www1.va.gov/a...OBRIEF82005.doc



#8 Guest_allan_*GuestMember

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 08:04 PM

would vaccines we recieved have anything to do with peripheral neuropathy?









J Neurochem., 1995 May;64(5):2169-76.

Related Articles, Links


Tellurite specifically affects squalene epoxidase: investigations examining the mechanism of tellurium-induced neuropathy.

Wagner M, Toews AD, Morell P.

Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 27599-7250, USA.

A peripheral neuropathy characterized by a transient demyelinating/remyelinating sequence results when young rats are fed a tellurium-containing diet. The neuropathy occurs secondary to a systemic block in cholesterol synthesis. Squalene accumulation suggested the lesion was at the level of squalene expoxidase, a microsomal monooxygenase that uses NADPH cytochrome P450 reductase to receive its necessary reducing equivalents from NADPH. We have now demonstrated directly specificity for squalene epoxidase; our in vitro studies show that squalene epoxidase is inhibited 50% in the presence of 5 microM tellurite, the presumptive in vivo active metabolite. Under these conditions, the activities of other monooxygenases, aniline hydroxylase and benzo(a)pyrene hydroxylase, were inhibited less than 5%. We also present data suggesting that tellurite inhibits squalene epoxidation by interacting with highly susceptible -SH groups present on this monooxygenase. In vivo studies of specificity were based on the compensatory response to feeding of tellurium. Following tellurium intoxication, there was up-regulation of squalene epoxidase activity both in liver (11-fold) and sciatic nerve (fivefold). This induction was a specific response, as demonstrated in liver by the lack of up-regulation following exposure to the nonspecific microsomal enzyme inducer, phenobarbital. As a control, we also measured the microsomal monooxygenase activities of aniline hydroxylase and benzo(a)pyrene hydroxylase. Although they were induced following phenobarbital exposure, activities of these monooxygenases were not affected following tellurium intoxication, providing further evidence of specificity of tellurium intoxication for squalene epoxidase.

PMID: 7722502 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]



#9 jrfrog

 
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Posted 19 September 2006 - 08:27 PM

I am a Nam Vet... 67&68 (Tet) 50% ptsd. 10 % burns, 10% tinnitus. I have been told I have peripheral neuropathy also..... pains in the thigh and numbness in the hands and feet.... should i file a claim for this? if so. Is this caused by agent orange? How much is this claim worth? or is it worth filing? Looking forward to any answers would be helpful....... thanks.



I haven't heard it asked in this way for a long time: "How much is it worth?" ... it is worth having it on record as a service-connection in the event that treatment becomes limited to sc problems only. Is it worth anything in 'dollars'? It will *never be* worth that as a trade off, although you call your own shots in that regard. My suggestion is - get it on record that you have this complaint. Will it automatically be granted? Most likely not. Will it *ever* be granted? That depends on the paper trail and the resultant medical condition.

"how much is this worth? or is it worth filing" .... I think you've lost your way, brother. If that's all it's worth to you, then it's got very little value... and it doesn't mean squat to me or probably many others. Is it worth your life? Can you actually put a 'value' on that?

#10 john999

 
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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:20 AM

One thing is that in the future chronic PN may be added to the list of AO diseases and then your claim's effective date would go back to the time you first filed. This is what I understand and what Berta Simmons and others have said to do for the blue water navy vets long ago. The VBM has a list of diseases that are most likely to be added in the future and PN is one of them. I would be sure to take the AO Registry Exam to document any of these diseases. That is how I got the information to get SC'ed for DMII and PN.

#11 oldsol423

 
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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:12 PM

I haven't heard it asked in this way for a long time: "How much is it worth?" ... it is worth having it on record as a service-connection in the event that treatment becomes limited to sc problems only. Is it worth anything in 'dollars'? It will *never be* worth that as a trade off, although you call your own shots in that regard. My suggestion is - get it on record that you have this complaint. Will it automatically be granted? Most likely not. Will it *ever* be granted? That depends on the paper trail and the resultant medical condition.

"how much is this worth? or is it worth filing" .... I think you've lost your way, brother. If that's all it's worth to you, then it's got very little value... and it doesn't mean squat to me or probably many others. Is it worth your life? Can you actually put a 'value' on that?



#12 oldsol423

 
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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:40 PM

How much is it worth? I posted recently asking about Peripheral Neuropathy. and got several intelligent ,informative replies , which I greatly appreciate. Although, there has to be one **** in the crowd everywhere. I think I was admonished for asking whether the claim was worth filing, and how much % would be attached to it if awarded. I was told in school a long time ago that no question was a stupid one and i guess i still adhere to that rule. As for getting it on record that i have the problem. its already there, and for **** sure I havent complained about it or any other problems I confronted in Vietnam or my life. { As far as being lost or losing my way. yep the jack *** is right about that, but thats my business for sure} I stayed away from the VA for 38 years with my problems. Only through the help of my wife and son did i go reluctantly to seek help. That was my first Post on this web site, and this is probably my last. I sincerely appreciate the great information on this site and it has been helpful to me. I would appreciate any future negative thoughts not be directed to me. I was just asking a dumb question I guess. SO PUT THAT JR FROG BACK IN THE POND WHERE HE BELONGS , LET HIM STOP CROAKING. This Oldsoldier has no crying towle on his soulder and never will.

#13 john999

 
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Posted 20 September 2006 - 08:02 PM

OldSol

The only reason to file a claim for PN would be ultimately for the money. I see nothing wrong with wanting to know if you can get paid for the PN. That is why they call it compensation. Keep plugging away. PN can lead to some other nasty complications so if you can get it service connected via diabetes or something else do so post haste.

#14 Berta

 
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Posted 25 September 2006 - 09:29 AM

John is right OldSol- why shouldn't a veteran claim anything to service that has SC potential.

PN can be VERY serious as John said.

I have seen rating range from 20% for PN up to 60% and I saw this today in Michelles post under
C & P mental -I think- maybe under success forum?

Michelle gets 60% for her Polyneuropathic condition.

This is the highest PN award I have ever seen.

Also I would imagine that a vet with say a 20% PN rating in 1999, would by now even have potential for a higher PN rating.

I posted some PN links for more info under another topic today and forgot what the topic was!

How can the VA miss heart disease- something like that----

I have some civ friends that cannot understand why the VA pays for PTSD-
There is still even a subtle undercurrent of anti Vietnam Veteran feelings in some people I know who never served.And they worry I guess that new Iraq and Afganistan vets will have PTSD and they feel they foot the bill for their comp.
I didnt read whatever post that inferred that you dont have a reasonable claim.Or you just want the money- of COURSE you do- you have a right to any type of service connection and since the Gov cannot make you whole again- money is the only way they can compensate your disabilities.

Its all about money and that is the reality of service comp.
You and I did not write the regs- the VA did.

I sure hope you give us a chance- sure there might be an a hole here and there on the board but your claim is more valuable than allowing anyone to keep you away from hadit.

Welcome aboard and I sure hope you return here. Berta

Edited by Berta, 25 September 2006 - 09:30 AM.


#15 10thFO

 
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Posted 25 September 2006 - 12:57 PM

Old School, You never Know unless you Ask. So with that said, don't run from the board just because one person pissed you off the same way the VA will time and time again. You got to be smarter than that.

Good question on the PN, as I'm interested myself, in filing for radiculopathy. The VA has still failed to adress my worsened conditions in my back and legs. So never quit questing for knowledge brother.

#16 john999

 
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Posted 25 September 2006 - 01:41 PM

PN has a bad habit of spreading inward from the periphery towards the center of the body. Just having numb feet or hands is one thing but the PN can and often does get worse and no one really knows why. When it is a secondary condition of DMII the doctors still don't know the exact mechanism of how DMII causes PN. I know a vet who lost a foot due to PN and DMII. He got a sore on his foot and just ignored it until he got gangrene and lost the foot. This stuff is no joke.

#17 evandc

 
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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:31 PM

PN is a real pain. I have it in both feet. For a while the bottom of my feet were numb. Now they are numb on the top also. To give you an idea how numb your feet can be with PN. I was cutting grass & some ants were on my foot. I brushed them off & after shower my wife asked about the red bumps on my left foot. Those little devils had bitten me 31 times & I never felt it or the scabs as my foot healed. Guess I was lucky not to have the feeling & itch like hell, but just think how dangerous that could be in other situations.


Don Evans