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What Is The Va Disability Rating For Hypertensive Heart Disease

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Types Of Kidney Disease

VA Disability Benefits for Heart and Cardiovascular Conditions

Kidney disease is a broad term that can appear in several stages.

Acute Kidney Disease

Acute kidney disease, or acute kidney failure, occurs when the kidneys stop functioning suddenly. Symptoms of acute kidney failure typically appear within a few days and are often a result of another illness. Acute kidney failure is more likely to occur when an individual has another condition that requires hospitalization or intensive health care. This is a serious condition that requires immediate medical treatment.

Diabetic nephropathy

Diabetic nephropathy is the beginning of kidney disease. In a person with diabetes, it is a progressive kidney disease caused by damage to the capillaries in the kidneys glomeruli. Diabetic nephropathy is diagnosed when there is a presence of elevated urinary protein excretion , and when there is no other type of renal disease presence.

We will go over the connection between diabetes and kidney disease in more depth below.

Chronic Kidney Disease

Chronic kidney disease , also known as chronic renal disease, is a progressive loss of kidney function over a period of months or years. Individuals with diabetes or high blood pressure are screened for kidney disease, and if undiagnosed for a long period, may already be at the chronic stage by the time it is diagnosed.

There are 5 stages of kidney disease, each stage being determined by the glomerular filtration rate.

Less than 15 or on dialysis Very severe or end-stage kidney failure

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Can I Get A Va Rating For Hypertension

Yes, you can get a VA rating for high blood pressure, more commonly known as hypertension in the medical community.

According to CFR 38 Part 4 the Schedule for Rating Disabilities, veterans may receive a VA disability rating for hypertension between 10% and 60%, with breaks at 20% and 40%, depending upon the severity of symptoms:

  • 10% VA rating for hypertension: If your diastolic pressure is 100 to 109, or your systolic pressure is 160 to 199.
  • 20% rating for hypertension: If your diastolic pressure is 110 to 119, or your systolic pressure is 200 or higher.
  • 40% VA disability rating for hypertension: If your diastolic pressure is 120 to 129.
  • 60% VA rating for hypertension is warranted if your diastolic pressure measures 130 or higher.

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What Is Heart Failure

As mentioned earlier, heart failure is a weak heart that cannot sustain its strength. Many factors contribute to heart failure, and one must recognize the severity of it.

A healthy heart consists of blood continually flowing throughout the body. When the heart relaxes, it fills with blood. The squeezing of the core causes the blood to carry the nutrients as well. When heart failure occurs, the squeezing is almost non-existent therefore, less blood throughout the body.

Heart failure is a chronic condition and will worsen over time. The essential ingredient is to understand the situation. The more you can gain knowledge of heart failure, the better your options on recognizing the symptoms, and to properly treat it.

Appealing A Denied Claim

VA Rating for Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) Explained ...

If an applicants heart disease claim was denied before February 19, 2019, they must file a legacy Notice of Disagreement with a local VA office before their case can move forward. Otherwise, if a claim is rejected on or after February 19, 2019, the Appeals Modernization Act would require a veteran to file a direct notice of disagreement using VA Form 10182 requesting administrative review by the Board of Veterans Appeals. A lawyer from our firm can help former servicemembers whose heart disease claims have been denied by VA take whichever appellate path best meets their individual circumstances.

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Impact Of Hypertension On Daily Life

Most people do not experience any symptoms when their blood pressure is high. Thus, it may go undiagnosed until serious health conditions occur. The following describes medical consequences that can result from hypertension:

  • Aneurysms: ballooning out of artery walls that can rupture causing life-threatening bleeding
  • Stroke

Obstructive sleep apnea can be both a cause and a consequence of hypertension. Over half of individuals with hypertension experience obstructive sleep apnea. This causes sleep deprivation which increases the risk of hypertension.

Here one of our VA disability lawyers talks about sleep apnea VA disability ratings.

How Can A Veteran Meet Vas Requirements For Heart Disease Claims

There are many conditions that can qualify a veteran to receive VA disability compensation. For example, heart diseases which result from exposure to toxic chemicals on military bases stateside or overseas may satisfy VAs disability requirements.

Agent Orange is a tactical herbicide which was used by American forces during the Vietnam War. Those who were boots on the ground in Vietnam, as well as Blue Water Veterans, may automatically qualify for disability benefits if they now suffer from heart disease as a result of serving active duty in contaminated areas. Other veterans who served in Thailand, Korea, or other locations affected by Agent Orange also qualify but typically have a much harder time proving they were exposed to tactical herbicides.

This exposure has led some former servicemembers to develop ischemic heart conditions or coronary artery diseases. These diseases cause cholesterol plaque to build up in the arteries and prevent oxygen and blood from reaching the heart, potentially leading to a heart attack.

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Former Prisoners Of War

Who Are Former Prisoners of War?

Since World War I, more than 142,000 Americans, including 85 women, have been captured and interned as POWs. Not included in this figure are nearly 93,000 Americans who were lost or never recovered. Only one fifth of America’s former POWs since World War I are still living . More than 90% of living former POWs were captured and interned during World War II. About 15,367 former POWs are in receipt of compensation for service-connected injuries, diseases, or illnesses.

In 1981, Congress passed Public Law 97-37 entitled “Former Prisoners of War Benefit Act.” This law accomplished several things. It established an Advisory Committee on Former Prisoners of War and mandated medical and dental care. It also identified certain diagnoses as presumptive service-connected conditions for former POWs. Subsequent public laws and policy decisions by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs have added additional diagnoses to the list of presumptive conditions .

What Are the Presumptive Conditions for Former POWs?

Today, former POWs are generally entitled to a presumption of service-connection for seven diseases, regardless of the length of captivity, if manifested to a degree of 10 percent or more after discharge or release from active military, naval, or air service. These diseases are:

  • Psychosis
  • Any of the Anxiety States
  • Dysthymic disorder, or depressive neurosis
  • Post-traumatic osteoarthritis

Are There Medical Benefits for Former POWs?

Special Monthly Compensation For Serious Disabilities

A Common Error In VA Disability Ratings For Heart Disease

Can a Veteran Receive Additional Payments for Serious Disabilities?

VA can pay additional compensation to a veteran who, as a result of military service, incurred the loss or loss of use of specific organs or extremities.

What Is Considered Loss or Loss of Use?

Loss, or loss of use, is described as either an amputation or, having no effective remaining function of an extremity or organ. The disabilities VA can consider for SMC include:

  • loss, or loss of use, of a hand or foot
  • immobility of a joint or paralysis
  • loss of sight of an eye
  • loss, or loss of use, of a reproductive organ
  • complete loss, or loss of use, of both buttocks
  • deafness of both ears
  • inability to communicate by speech
  • loss of a percentage of tissue from a single breast, or both breasts, from mastectomy or radiation treatment

What if I Have a Combination of These Disabilities?

VA will pay higher rates for combinations of these disabilities such as loss or loss of use of the feet, legs, hands, and arms, in specific monetary increments, based on the particular combination of the disabilities. There are also higher payments for various combinations of severe deafness with bilateral blindness.

Additional SMC is available if a veteran is service connected for paraplegia, with complete loss of bowel and bladder control.

In addition, if you have other service-connected disabilities that, in combination with the above special monthly compensation, meet certain criteria, a higher amount of SMC can also be considered.

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An Attorney Can Help You Appeal Your Disability Claim For Your Heart Condition

Veterans can file an application for heart-related VA disability on their own. However, they must still be able to prove a causal connection between their military service and their heart condition in order to be considered for disability. At Cuddigan Law, our VA disability attorneys can gather medical information from your service record to help get your appeal approved. Contact Cuddigan Law today or download a free copy of our book, The Essential Guide to VA Disability Claims, to learn more.

Related Links:

  • Iraq War Veterans with Breathing Problems Eligible for VA Disability
  • Applying for VA Disability Benefits for Heart Disease or Congestive Heart Failure

Va Disability High Triglycerides Or Hypercholesterolemia

The VA doesnt grant a disability rating for high triglycerides or cholesterol . Yet, there are several other conditions that meet the service-connected criteria. Heart injuries, diabetes, hypertension, and circulatory problems can all involve high cholesterol.

While high cholesterol, by itself, isnt a disability, it may signal a bigger problem. Its important to see your provider and have them check for other diseases. Ask them to fully document their findings.

Receiving a diagnosis of one of these related conditions may qualify you for VA benefits.

Here one of our VA disability compensation lawyers talks about the benefits available to 100% rated disabled veterans.

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Contact Vets National Advocates Today

Filing for disability compensation due to heart disease can be a difficult and lengthy process. If you or a loved one need help filing a veterans benefits claim or have been denied compensation, our advocates are ready to help. If you have lost a loved one due to heart disease, we may be able to help you file a claim for survivors benefits.

At Vets National Advocates, we are dedicated to helping our veterans and their families receive the compensation they deserve.

If your heart problem is service-connected, you deserve the benefits youve earned.Contact us online now or call to get connected with one of our advocates.

Automobile And Special Adaptive Equipment Grants

VA Disability Ratings for Heart Disease

Can a Veteran Receive Financial Assistance From VA to Purchase an Automobile?

Yes. Financial assistance, in the form of a grant, is available to purchase a new or used automobile to accommodate a veteran or servicemember with certain disabilities that resulted from an injury or disease incurred or aggravated during active military service. The grant may also be paid, if disabilities are a result of medical treatment, examination, vocational rehabilitation, or compensated work therapy provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs .

The grant is paid directly to the seller of the automobile for the total price of the automobile. The veteran or servicemember may only receive the automobile grant once in his/her lifetime.

What Disabilities Must You Have to Qualify for the Automobile Grant?

A veteran or servicemember must have one of the following disabilities to qualify for the automobile grant:

  • loss, or permanent loss of use, of one or both feet
  • loss, or permanent loss of use, of one or both hands, or
  • permanent impairment of vision in both eyes to a certain degree

Does VA Pay to Adapt a Vehicle?

Yes. Those qualified for the automobile grant, and veterans or servicemembers with ankylosis of one or both knees or hips resulting from an injury or disease incurred or aggravated by active military service may also qualify for the adaptive equipment grant.

The adaptive equipment grant may be paid more than once, and it may be paid to either the seller or the veteran.

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Presumptive Service Connection Agent Orange

A presumption of exposure means that if a veteran has qualifying service the VA will presume that they were exposed to certain harmful chemicals or hazards. If the VA concedes exposure and a veteran develops certain health conditions they may be eligible for service connection on a presumptive basis.

CAD is an example of a condition that can be granted on a presumptive basis. Veterans with CAD who served in Vietnam between January 9, 1962, and May 7, 1975, should get VA benefits under this presumption.

Appealing Your Va Benefits Decision

If your condition worsened and prevents you from working, youre eligible to file an appeal. A VA benefits attorney can help you apply for the Total Disability Individual Unemployability benefit.

If you disagree with the VA disability rating, you may file a Clear and Unmistakable Error claim. This states that the rating is incorrect and should be set aside. Its the veterans duty to show that the C file facts and regulations or the VAs decision at the time of the ruling were wrong.

Its important to understand that CUE claims arent often approved. Thus, many veterans choose other legal approaches for appealing VA disability claims.

Incorrect back pay may present another reason for an appeal. All back payments should be from the effective date. Sometimes, the VA has an incorrect effective date which impacts the payment amount.

Whether you choose to file a VA disability appeal or a CUE VA appeal, you must begin within one year. This clock starts when you received the VA decision about your rating. Filing a CUE claim is a long process and may jeopardize your ability to later file a disability appeal.

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Keep Copies And Receipts

Always keep a copy of your entire application packet including additional documentation. If you choose to file your application by mail, you should receive a VA letter within a few weeks. For eBenefits applications, youll receive a digital confirmation within hours.

Add these letters or confirmations and any other correspondence to your file. This will prove invaluable when checking on the claim and if you decide to appeal the decision.

Here one of our VA disability lawyers talks about one of the most important parts of a winning veterans disability claim: the nexus letter.

Va Disability Rating Chart For Hypertension

Winning VA Disability Benefits for Ischemic Heart Disease

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How Diabetes Affects The Kidneys

The kidneys are made up of hundreds of thousands of units called nephrons. These nephrons consist of a glomerulus and its attached tubule, which specializes in reabsorbing necessary fluids and secreting the rest as urine. Diabetes, particularly hyperglycemia, causes nephrons to slowly thicken and become scarred over time. The scarred nephrons begin to leak protein into the urine. This is known as microalbuminuria. Albumin is an important component of human blood, as it transports hormones, fatty acids, and other compounds through the bloodstream. In a healthy kidney, the glomerulus normally secretes very small amounts of albumin. However, scarred nephrons allow too many albumin to slip through and pass into the secreted fluids, causing the body to lose these necessary proteins.

If caught early enough, slightly elevated levels of albumin in the urine will return to normal with proper control of blood sugar. However, after 7-15 years, 25% 40% of insulin-dependent diabetics develop microalbuminuria, and the vast majority of these patients will progress to proteinuria over the following years. Development of persistent proteinuria often heralds a decline in renal function associated with even higher levels of protein excretion. In other words, proteinuria is a sign of chronic kidney disease .

How Can Hypertension Be Treated

According to considerable research, treating hypertension has very beneficial effects. It can reduce the risk of stroke, heart attacks, and long-term heart disease by a very large amount and can often mean the difference between life and death. There are multiple types of treatments for hypertension, and they usually fall under the categories of either lifestyle modifications or medication.

A lifestyle modification is an alteration or elimination of certain lifestyles and habits that are unhealthy and potentially harmful. This can fall into a lot of different areas of life and generally focusing on healthier living. Some general guidelines include focusing on exercising, eating healthier, and quitting smoking if that is an already existing habit.

Generally, these lifestyle changes will assist in many areas, but they especially help people who experience hypertension. Increasing cardiovascular health is generally the driving factor behind lowering blood pressure, and these practices will aid in that to a very high degree. Other solutions include getting aerobic exercise to enhance the strength of the heart and lowering alcohol intake. These are all very general guidelines for health in general but are especially important when dealing with different stages of hypertension.

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