How to Get the Highest VA Rating for Back Injuries
After dedicating every bit of your energy to the service, probably for your state or organisation, you may feel that it’s time to get that VA compensation you have been yearning for.
You may have back pain and other health-related issues. Back pain is a common condition that is likely to affect you when considering your time spent in service and all the activities you frequently engaged in. Getting your disability benefits could be a quick option for you.
When you initially qualify for benefits, your rating will probably start at 10%. Although back pain case ratings might take slightly longer to increase than other conditions, you may be lucky enough to have them increased up to 100%. What does that translate to? It means that the health and monetary benefits you qualify for will also increase, making it easier for you to access the health services you need.
However, your rating may not be at a high level yet. You may be wondering how to improve your rating. Don’t worry because you are in the right place. In this article, you will learn what to do to increase your rating.
What Conditions Qualify for the Highest VA Rating?
Though there may be many back conditions that prompt you to request a higher VA rating, not all conditions are eligible. Below is one condition that may award you either a 40% or 100% rating.
Disability on the Thoracolumbar Spine
When we talk about back injuries, this refers to the thoracolumbar spine, which encompasses the thoracic and the lumbar parts of the spine. After understanding that, you need to know that ratings are assigned depending on the extent of the damage to the part that has been affected. If a specific part is fully affected, it will command a 100% rating. However, if it’s a partial impact, you may only have about a 40% rating.
Why You May Only Qualify for 40% and Not 100%
It’s important to understand that disability refers to mobility or range of motion. It’s also known as ankylosis, which describes joint fusion. Ankylosis can affect many joints such as your elbows, knees, fingers, and toes. Ankylosing spondylitis specifically refers to fusion of the spine. It is often caused by an injury to the spine. This condition may limit your range of motion or completely restrict your ability to move your back.
What determines your VA rating is the severity of your ankylosis. When talking about spinal cord injuries, you’ll often hear the words complete and incomplete. A complete spinal cord injury means a full loss of feeling and movement control below the site of the injury. An incomplete spinal cord injury means a partial loss of feeling and function below the site of the injury. Both injuries can greatly impact your quality of life but they do not both qualify for a high VA rating.
If you have a complete spinal cord injury, you may get a rating of 100%. Realistically, the most common rating after 100% is 50% for thoracolumbar disability. However, some people get a 40% rating for an incomplete spinal injury even when they have less than 30-degree flexion. This means that your back disability must be extensive for you to qualify for the 40% rating.
Also, for you to get 40%, you must not be able to bend completely. This shows that your condition is serious and deserves a high rating. For these reasons, you may only get a 40% rating instead of 100%.
Importance of the Highest VA Rating
A high VA rating is essential. Once you get your VA rating approval, your monetary benefits can be determined using this VA disability calculator. Monetary benefits will allow you to access the health services you need without financial hardship. These funds will be vital to you especially if your back injury prevents you from working.