MEB/Rating question

Ljm

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Hello all,
I have almost 8 years in the Army. I have been dealing with neck pain/numbness in arm/fingers/hand for 5 plus years. I have already had cubital tunnel surgery, nerve root injections in my neck, pain management, physical therapy and the symptoms always come back. My last MRI in NOV 15 as as follows:
Uncovertebral osteophyte w/out neural foraminal stenosis at c3-c4, c4-c5 and c6-c7 level. C5-C6 ncovertebral osteophytoasis results in moderate right neural foramibal stenosis and mild left neural foraminal narrowing.

Also be diagnosed with cervical degenerative diseasae AND spondylosis with neural foraminal narrowing.
My pain in my back has resurfaced and I'm starting to have numbness/tingling in the last 2 toes on my left foot. I just conducted an MRI last week and I am awaiting the results. The last neurosurgeon I saw mentioned ACDF surgery if there wasn't any improvement after the cubital tunnel surgery.

I have 2 questions that I hope the group can help me with:

1. Do I have a good case for an MEB?
2. If I do go through an MEB, am I likely to receive the minimum 30% required to be medically retired?

Thank you for any information that you can provide.
 

Warrior644

Super Moderator
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
Hello all,
I have almost 8 years in the Army. I have been dealing with neck pain/numbness in arm/fingers/hand for 5 plus years. I have already had cubital tunnel surgery, nerve root injections in my neck, pain management, physical therapy and the symptoms always come back. My last MRI in NOV 15 as as follows:
Uncovertebral osteophyte w/out neural foraminal stenosis at c3-c4, c4-c5 and c6-c7 level. C5-C6 ncovertebral osteophytoasis results in moderate right neural foramibal stenosis and mild left neural foraminal narrowing.

Also be diagnosed with cervical degenerative diseasae AND spondylosis with neural foraminal narrowing.
My pain in my back has resurfaced and I'm starting to have numbness/tingling in the last 2 toes on my left foot. I just conducted an MRI last week and I am awaiting the results. The last neurosurgeon I saw mentioned ACDF surgery if there wasn't any improvement after the cubital tunnel surgery.

I have 2 questions that I hope the group can help me with:

1. Do I have a good case for an MEB?
2. If I do go through an MEB, am I likely to receive the minimum 30% required to be medically retired?

Thank you for any information that you can provide.
Welcome to the PEB Forum! :)

Hmm, if the medical providers have done all they can to try to fix the medical problem(s) and if the medical conditions are affecting your ability to perform your assigned military duties, then yes; you may have a good case.

In retrospect, mostly for neck and back medical conditions, the Range of Motion (ROM) is primarily used to calculate any potential DoVA proposed rating(s).

IAW 38 CFR VASRD for the Spine, you will need at least "Forward flexion of the cervical spine 15 degrees or less; or, favorable ankylosis of the entire cervical spine" to receive a 30% rating and/or "Unfavorable ankylosis of the entire cervical spine; or, forward flexion of the thoracolumbar spine 30 degrees or less; or, favorable ankylosis of the entire thoracolumbar spine" to receive a 40% rating.

Lastly, please see http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-id...155d7113a&mc=true&node=se38.1.4_171a&rgn=div8 for detailed information. Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

Ljm

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Thank you for the information. Dr left it up to me. Told me that I have to decide if I want to deal with the pain.
When it comes to range of motion, is it based on range of motion in relation to where pain beings or just pure range of motion.

Thanks again.
 

Warrior644

Super Moderator
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
Thank you for the information. Dr left it up to me. Told me that I have to decide if I want to deal with the pain.
When it comes to range of motion, is it based on range of motion in relation to where pain beings or just pure range of motion.

Thanks again.
Indeed, you are quite welcome! Take care! :cool:

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

ThisGuy

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Similar cervical issues, after 6 years in the Army. I received my NARSUM pa let today and it stated my cervical issues did not meet retention standards. According to my C&P ROM, I have 15 degrees of flexion. If I read correctly that translates to 30%. My NARSUM stated that this condition will probably deteriorate in the future. I'm concerned as to being put on the TDRL, any comments or experiences would help. Thanks.
 

Paradox45

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I had a similar situation in 2002, a bone spur pressing on my spinal cord, and surrounding stenosis. A neurologist at Walter Reed told me my parachuting days were over and that if they didn't "fix" me, then I was out of the Army.
The fix seemed risky and my neurologist advised against it and had already done the paperwork for the board.
In 2004, they finally separated me at 10%. About 6 months later, the VA gave me 20% for my neck and 10% for each knee. As Warrior said, it all has to do with pain in the range of motion at yhe time of your physical.
I'm currently going through PDBR review.
 

Ljm

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Good to see the information. I'm officially in the MEB process. My biggest concern is evaluation from doctor's. My pain management dr. told me that i have a herniated disc and arthritis at every level of my neck. If one Dr says it, is that enough or does the VA have to male rhe same diagnosis?
 

Ljm

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Good to see the information. I'm officially in the MEB process. My biggest concern is evaluation from doctor's. My pain management dr. told me that i have a herniated disc and arthritis at every level of my neck. If one Dr says it, is that enough or does the VA have to male rhe same diagnosis?
*make the
 

Yota99

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Having the ACDF surgery on the 09 Mar for C5-C7. Wondering what my profile will look like and will I be coded 31 or 37?
 

GUNS'N'STUFF

Well-Known Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Its more to do with your ability to perform your duties of rank, grade and position more than anything. Heck, I smacked my head off an adobe head jamb going in a hurry discuss intel and saw stars for two days straight, couldn't move my neck, I have the same conditions in cervical. Except, my command failed to treat me and ignored my conditions and could I perform as an infantryman not feeling my arms, etc. NO. My point here is, you best know if your specialty this isn't something that can be corrected and you put back on or similar roll. Otherwise, you will not get to a MEB. You'd rather be medically taken care of than your health abused and neglected and your permanently paralyzed like me, irregardless of benefits. So, focus on your health care for now, get the best you can while in service, if you can, or find out how to advocate for yourself to do so.
 
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