Saturday, November 7, 2015

Agent Orange, Dioxin, Arsenic,Presumptive, Diabetes, Peripheral Neuropathy, Depression, Pain, and that is just from the old guys that were in Vietnam. The Guys since then have been screwed on their shit as well.

(This is the 11 th edit of this post)

I have a friend who is a true believer about the VA Helping vets.  He was a bit messed up and they did save his bacon.  He should be positive about them.


He didn't live in Oklahoma or Texas or the the South in general.
For many if not most of us the VA and Congress are just waiting for us Vietnam types to die off.  Let first say that I sincerely hope the guys who fought us have people there that have helped them more than they have here in the USA.  Not to mention the collaterals that were screwed up for multiple generations.

I have run into a VA brick wall that has been encouraged and supported by Congress and the last two administrations.  The wall has been built around the disease Peripheral Neuropathy.  Here is the deal in a nut shell, make that a Quonset hut.  VA says it has nothing to do with Dioxin and Agent Orange.  They say it an off shoot of diabetes that is only presumptively cause by agent Orange in the first place, and Congress now reluctantly lets the VA follow through on that law from a more flush revenue time. They rely on studies done in the 80's and 90's they sponsored that says nor elation ship to Agents Orange for Peripheral Neuropathy (PN).  As recently as 2011 they not only said the same thing sort of but set up a catch 22 that completely ignores that disease.  Trouble is that other research on the boys messing with Project Hades (latter the name was change to Project Ranch Hand) itself, that spread the stuff, say,yes, there is a relationship and it is worse the more you had contact with it.  The VA, Congress, and a NIH panel still say no.

Recently older wiser Neurologist diagnosed me for this disease.   My GP had already decided I had it as well.  Guess my surprise when I discovered that the onset symptoms started in 1995 or before and predated my diabetes that supposedly cause it by 6 years.  Yes that's the game.  The VA position as far as dioxin is concerned it cause diabetes (presumably) and diabetes causes PN.

(Note: Neither my GP nor my Neurologist will say that this disease is based in toxin damage.  They can't prove it and their world says it is just diabetes caused, regardless that the symptoms predate the diabetes by 10 maybe years.  Patients lie, you know.  In other words my medical professionals do not agree with me on the source. They kind of do a double think about diabetes is a presumptive disease of toxin poisoning, but not the nueropathy is not ?????......)

Soooo bottom line.  The VA have ignored the science and want to cut expenditures and the old farts from Nam are costing them a lot that many in Congress think are fakes and scammers anyway, so they simply say officially PN, what's PN? When did veterans become dis Honorable drain on the resources of the good people they served ?

Our country is basically full of bullshit when it comes to the health and needs of their veterans.  Sure VA has good people and they do good things, but this policy behavior is not designed to help or do good.  It is there to save money, lots of money.   Indeed by the time anyone does anything about it, there will be few if any left to care for.  That's a viable policy decision, but piss poor military decision.

Who will fight your wars if you betray those who have?
Ah, of course mercenaries, sell sword, freelance, fighters.
Good that's good. better work fast on the drones and robots you will need them.  Best give DARPA several billion more dollars.

(It is my intent to footnote and document this as soon as I return from my blood tests)

The VA says:

Facts About Herbicides

Herbicide-sprayed areas and unsprayed areas
Herbicide-sprayed areas and
unsprayed areas
Agent Orange is a blend of tactical herbicides the U.S. military sprayed from 1962 to 1971 during Operation Ranch Hand in the Vietnam War to remove trees and dense tropical foliage that provided enemy cover.
More than 19 million gallons of various “rainbow” herbicide combinations were sprayed, but Agent Orange was the combination the U.S. military used most often. The name “Agent Orange” came from the orange identifying stripe used on the 55-gallon drums in which it was stored.
Heavy sprayed areas included forests near the demarcation zone, forests at the junction of the borders of Cambodia, Laos, and South Vietnam, and mangroves on the southernmost peninsula of Vietnam and along shipping channels southeast of Saigon.
The U.S. Department of Defense developed these tactical herbicides specifically to be used in “combat operations.” They were not commercial grade herbicides purchased from chemical companies and sent to Vietnam. Tactical herbicides also were used, tested, and stored in areas outside of Vietnam.
Learn how Veterans may have been exposed to Agent Orange and other herbicides during military service, including outside Vietnam.

Agent Orange active ingredients and characteristics

The two active ingredients in the Agent Orange herbicide combination were equal amounts of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) and 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,5-T), which contained traces of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD).
The dioxin TCDD was an unwanted byproduct of herbicide production. Dioxins are pollutants that are released into the environment by burning waste, diesel exhaust, chemical manufacturing, and other processes. TCDD is the most toxic of the dioxins, and is classified as a human carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Agent Orange dries quickly after spraying and breaks down within hours to days when exposed to sunlight (if not bound chemically to a biological surface such as soil, leaves and grass) and is no longer harmful.
For more information on TCDD, read the fact sheet on chlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (63 KB, PDF) from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease.
- See more at:

Peripheral Neuropathy and Agent Orange

VA presumes Veterans' early-onset peripheral neuropathy is related to their exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides during service when the disease appears within one year of exposure to a degree of at least 10 percent disabling by VA's rating regulations.
- See more at:

 So VA says no go Joe.  Have to report it after a year. By 1970 for me....gee....i missed the deadline.

Research on peripheral neuropathy and herbicides

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences concluded in its report Veterans and Agent Orange: Update 1996 that there is some evidence to suggest that neuropathy of acute or subacute onset may be associated with herbicide exposure. Based on this evidence, VA presumed an association between herbicide exposure during service and acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy.
The IOM report Veterans and Agent Orange: Update 2010 concluded that there is "limited or suggestive evidence of an association" between herbicide exposure and "early-onset peripheral neuropathy that may be persistent". In response to this report, VA eliminated the requirement that acute and subacute peripheral neuropathy appear "within weeks or months" after exposure and resolve within two years. The final regulation took effect Sept. 6, 2013.
Dang, well maybe I didn't miss the deadline.   But......
- See more at:

Health status of Army Chemical Corps Vietnam veterans who sprayed defoliant in Vietnam.

Odds ratios for diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, and chronic respiratory disease were elevated, but not significantly (P>0.05) for those who served in Vietnam. However, they were significantly elevated among those Vietnam veterans who sprayed herbicides: diabetes, odds ratio (OR)=1.50 (95% confidence interval [95%CI]=1.15-1.95); heart disease, OR=1.52 (1.18-1.94); hypertension, OR=1.32 (1.08-1.61); and chronic respiratory condition, OR=1.62 (1.28-2.05). Hepatitis was associated with Vietnam service, but not with herbicide application.


 2010 May;20(5):339-46. doi: 10.1016/j.annepidem.2010.02.003.

Mortality patterns of Army Chemical Corps veterans who were occupationally exposed to herbicides in Vietnam.


The risk of mortality from respiratory disease (malignant or nonmalignant) was significantly greater for ACC Vietnam veterans in comparison with their non-Vietnam veteran peers and U.S. men. Herbicide exposure could be contributing to the patterns observed. Because of the unique nature of their military duties and study limitations, 
findings may not be generalizeable to Vietnam veterans as a whole.
findings may not be generalizeable to Vietnam veterans as a whole.
Let's say you fight the VA for 12 years.
Then after all sorts of shit 
They give you 20 - 40 % disability
In conclusion the have the gall to say well we won't say we were ever wrong and don't you either......

In this case, 
the Board is granting in full the benefit sought on appeal.  
Accordingly, assuming, without deciding, that any error was 
committed with respect to either the duty to notify or the 
duty to assist, such error was harmless and will not be 
further discussed.  

Service connection for peripheral neuropathy is granted, 
subject to the law and regulations governing the payment of 
monetary benefits.

OK,What is this all about anyway?
Peripheral Nueropathy according to my neurologist evolves into Autonomic Nueropathy

Autonomic - Everything your body does automatically without you telling it to do it.

Allergies/Histamine Reactions (Mouth Itching)
Allergies - Food and Environmental 
Back Pain
Bladder Pressure
Blood Pressure High or Low
Breathing Difficulties
Burning Pain
Chemical Sensitivities 
Chest Pain
Cognitive Changes
Dry Skin
Ear Pain
Eyes - Dry or Tear
Eye Infections - Blood Shot
Exercise Intolerance
Fatigue - Mental and Physical
Full Gastric Dysmotility
GI Problems - Other
Heart Burn
Heart Rate
Immune System Compromised
intolerance to Cold
Intolerance to Heat
Jaw Pain - TMJ
Joint Pain/Overextension
Loud Crowded Locations
Medication Under or Over Reaction
Motor Skills
Neuropathy Pain
Night Driving
Noise Intolerance
Optical Blurriness (looking through wax paper or grittiness)
Optical Problems w/ Flashing Lights or Moving \ Light/Shadow
Rashes / Hives
Restless Leg 
Sleep - Irregular Patterns - Days and Nights Mixed
Sleep - Can go without sleep or sleep 18 hours
Sweating - uncontrollable
Temperature Intolerance
Trigger Finger
Urinary Tract Infections
Vaginal Pain
Vibration Intolerance
Vision Loss 
Vitamin Deficiencies
Vocal Cord - stroke
Weather Changes - Temperature or Seasonal
Weight Loss or Gain

Not all people have all symptoms or at any one given point in time... Your brain randomly sends mixed / wrong messages to your brain.

Signs and symptoms of autonomic neuropathy vary based on the nerves affected. They may include:
  • Dizziness and fainting when standing caused by a sudden drop in blood pressure.
  • Urinary problems, such as difficulty starting urination, incontinence, difficulty sensing a full bladder and inability to completely empty the bladder, which can lead to urinary tract infections.
  • Sexual difficulties, including problems achieving or maintaining an erection (erectile dysfunction) or ejaculation problems in men and vaginal dryness, low libido and difficulty reaching orgasm in women.
  • Difficulty digesting food, such as feeling full after a few bites of food, loss of appetite, diarrhea, constipation, abdominal bloating, nausea, vomiting, difficulty swallowing and heartburn, all due to changes in digestive function.
  • Sweating abnormalities, such as sweating too much or too little, which affects the ability to regulate body temperature.
  • Sluggish pupil reaction, making it difficult to adjust from light to dark and seeing well when driving at night.
  • Exercise intolerance, which may occur if your heart rate stays the same instead of adjusting in response to your activity level.

 Effects of Diabetic Autonomic Neuropathy on
Exercise Risk
  • Silent myocardial ischemia
  • Resting tachycardia and decreased maximal responsiveness
  • Decreased heart-rate variability
  • Orthostasis/hypotension with exercise
  • Exaggerated blood pressure responses with supine position and exercise.
  • Loss of diuranal blood pressure variation
  • Cardiovascular and cardiorespiratory instability
  • Abnormal systolic ejection fractions at rest/exercise
  • Poor exercise tolerance
  • Failure of pupil adaptation to darkness
  • Gastroparesis and diabetic diarrhea
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Decreased hypoglycemia awareness
  • Hypoglycemia unresponsiveness
  • Heat intolerance due to defective sympathetic thermoregualtion and sweating (prone to dehydration)
  • Susceptibility to foot ulcers and limb loss due to disordered regulation of cutaneous blood flow
  • Incontinence

Reprinted with permission from the American Diabetes Association, Health Professional's Guide to Diabetes and Exercise, p. 190

Here are a series of statements about CAN and "Exercise Intolerance" and what it means.  As you shall note, it sums to the concept of "let's test and try to figure it out".  According to my Neurologist my heart rate simply stays the same +/- a few beats no mater what I am doing and i need to be aware of over exerting myself, blacking out and falling.  
10 years ago a nephrologist, after a urologist had by an operation removed two large kidney stones, found my heart rate to be at resting in the 90 to 110 range and prescribed a medication  (metoprolol succinate) to lower my resting heart rate to the 60-70, and it did.   I'm still taking it and my heart rate is about 68 bpm.   
My G.P. about 3 years ago looking for my fatigue causes sent me to a cardiologist who gave me a rest/stress heart test using injections/ tread mill/ scans etc. he found the difference between rest and stress to be 0 (zero) bpm.  No problem he says. ???????

What Is Peripheral Neuropathy? Peripheral neuropathy is a nerve disorder. It may cause numbness, tingling, and weakness. It can also cause pain. These symptoms usually start in the longest nerves in the body and so first affect the feet and later the hands. This is sometimes called the “stocking-glove” pattern. The symptoms usually spread slowly and evenly up the legs and arms. Other body parts might also be affected. Most people who develop peripheral neuropathy are over age 55. But people can be affected at any age. What Causes Peripheral Neuropathy? Peripheral neuropathy has many forms and causes. Some of the causes are still unknown. The most common cause is diabetes. Other common causes include alcohol abuse, poor nutrition, autoimmune processes (where the body’s own immune system attacks parts of the nerves), and genes. Exposure to certain drugs or toxins can lead to neuropathy. Direct pressure or compression of a single nerve—like in carpal tunnel syndrome—may cause it to malfunction. Did you know? Neurologists are medical doctors who specialize in disorders of the brain and nerves. They are the specialists who often diagnose and treat people with peripheral neuropathy. What Are the Symptoms? The early symptoms of peripheral neuropathy include: • Tingling • Burning • Pricking, stabbing, or shock-like pain • Muscle cramping • Numbness • Sensitivity to touch Over the years, nerve damage may worsen. Later symptoms can include: • Weakness • Loss of muscle mass • Digestive problems • Erectile dysfunction in men • Dizziness • Balance and walking problems • Increased risk of ulcers or infections in the feet Most types of neuropathy develop and progress slowly. But some types come on quickly. For instance, with Guillain-Barré syndrome, a disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks the nerves, neuropathy symptoms appear suddenly and progress rapidly. Then they slowly get better as damaged nerves heal.

One of the most overlooked of all serious complications of diabetes is cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN),1–3 which encompasses damage to the autonomic nerve fibers that innervate the heart and blood vessels, resulting in abnormalities in heart rate control and vascular dynamics.4
The present report discusses the clinical manifestations (eg, resting tachycardia, orthostasis, exercise intolerance, intraoperative cardiovascular liability, silent myocardial infarction [MI], and increased risk of mortality) in the presence of CAN. It also demonstrates that autonomic dysfunction can affect daily activities of individuals with diabetes and may invoke potentially life-threatening outcomes. Advances in technology, built on decades of research and clinical testing, now make it possible to objectively identify early stages of CAN with the use of careful measurement of autonomic function and to provide therapeutic choices that are based on symptom control and that might abrogate the underlying disorder.
It is well established that coronary artery disease is a major complication of diabetes mellitus, representing the ultimate cause of death in more than half of all patients with this disease.1 Clinicopathological correlations, as well as several angiographic studies, suggest that diabetic patients have more extensive atherosclerotic disease, affecting the coronary arteries in particular

Exercise intolerance is a condition of inability or decreased ability to perform physical exercise at the expected level or duration of someone with a specific physical condition. It also includes experiences of unusually severe post-exercise pain, fatigue, nausea, vomiting or other negative effects.
For even the physically fit, vigorous exercise taxes the organs and muscles of the respiratory system. When exhaustion is reached, continued effort can lead to shortness of breath and dizziness. These sensations signal that oxygen no longer is being processed efficiently and rest is required. In the case of an exercise intolerant individual, the exhaustion threshold may show within minutes of starting physical activity. Worse, fatigue can be induced by seemingly innocuous activity such as eating or writing.
Muscle cramps happen to elite athletes, so why should they signal exercise intolerance? The difference lies in the amount of exertion necessary to produce the cramps and the duration of their presence. A sufferer -- assuming adequate stretching -- may endure only a few minutes of training before experiencing pain and stiffness, which can last for several days. Alternately, the pain can develop in the exercise intolerant hours later, perhaps when asleep.
Metabolic researchers cite chronotropic incompetence as a sign of exercise intolerance in some patients. This phenomenon occurs when the heart rate does not rise to the level necessary to meet the metabolic needs of increased activity. Though many factors affect heart rate -- weight, age and history, for example -- the inability to reach the rate that would be normal for a given profile is a possible flag for exercise iHeightened activity can produce mental and emotional malaise in those afflicted with exercise intolerance. Insidiously, the depression can rob them of more energy, creating a vicious cycle. Facing physically debilitating limitations takes a toll on the psyche, manifesting itself in anxiety, despondence, disorientation and irritability. Taken together with other symptoms, depression is a common characteristic of exercise intolerance.
Marked changes in blood pressure can occur in people with exercise intolerance. Standing up and walking across the room is sometimes all it takes. The "Hypertension Reseach" journal published a 2007 study showing a correlation between hypertensive response and exercise intolerance. After six minutes of exercise, those with the intolerance had higher jumps in blood pressure than the control group.

Exercise Intolerance

Autonomic dysfunction impairs exercise tolerance,9 reduces response in heart rate and blood pressure (BP),10 and blunts increases in cardiac output in response to exercise.11,12 Diabetic patients who are likely to have CAN should be tested for cardiac stress before undertaking an exercise program.9 Patients with CAN need to rely on their perceived exertion, not heart rate, to avoid hazardous levels of intensity of exercise.13 Presently, there is inadequate evidence to recommend routine screening of asymptomatic diabetic patients with an exercise ECG test. Emerging data support the utility of stress imaging testing in identifying diabetic patients with preclinical coronary artery disease, particularly patients with high-risk features, and comorbidities such as long-standing disease, CAN, multiple chronic renal failures, resting ECG abnormalities, and peripheral artery disease.14

Alright let's assume some wants to fight for his/her rights, what do you do?

Well there a guideline how to fight for it.

Guidelines for Veterans -VA Law – “Agent Orange and Peripheral Neuropathy”

NSNpdfCoverSmallNote: You may find all this information somewhat overwhelming. Therefore do not hesitate to give a copy of this document to a Service Officer from one of the veterans’ organizations. You will help educate them and give them more tools to help you.  One of the most important items in these guidelines are the references to substantiate certain facts regarding the difficulty with the ‘early onset’ requirement by the VA.
If you were on the ground in Vietnam the VA law now presumes you were exposed to Agent Orange/Toxic Herbicides, the VA law now recognizes that Agent Orange or Toxic Herbicides cause Chronic Peripheral Neuropathy (or any diagnosis related to PN) so you DO NOT HAVE TO PROVE this by VA law.  The one trick the VA and IOM put in the new law is the requirement of EARLY ONSET and this is a bogus requirement.  See more below on how to challenge this part of the law.......(more)
 One thing to remember is that by this time the victim veteran is weak,depressed, and given to fits of anger. Why the fuck would they want to entangle themselves in such a mess as this?
Back to my original statement:
They will fight you until you are dead.
Of course there are the service advocates...the what? Where?  Who?   In Oklahoma????????   Educate them?   Are these the same organizations that basically spit on us upon our return?  Screw that shit.

Why do we have to fight every individual case over and over and over?

God Damn them all.
If I started today based upon what I have read in 5 to 10 years I might have won maybe.
(more latter)


BB-Idaho said...

One of the chemicals associated with Agent Orange, as you probably know, is the dioxin derivative, 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzodioxin (TCDD), which has both acute
and chronic toxicities. One of the manufacturers offers and MSDS, wherein we note:

■ compare PCB treatment regime:
Acute symptoms related to overexposure to the PCBs and dioxins (PCDDs and PCDFs) include irritation of the skin, eyes
and mucous membranes and nausea, vomiting and myalgias.
After a latency period which may be prolonged (up to several weeks or more), chloracne, porphyria cutanea tarda,
hirsutism, or hyper- pigmentation may occur. Elevated levels of hepatic transaminases and blood lipids may be found.
Polyneuropathies with sensory impairment and lower-extremity motor weakness may also occur.
Useful laboratory studies might include glucose, electrolytes, BUN, creatinine, liver transaminase, and liver function tests,
and uroporphyrins (where porphyria is suspected)"
We note here the statement by the manufacturer regarding POLYNUNERUAPOTHIES. I'm not a medical expert, but if those that produced the stuff recognize the effect, it is peculiar that the VA medicos do not. Up this way there are many VN vets with health problems from minor to serious (and oddly, some in perfect health) and for each, it has been a battle over Agent Orange effects.

drlobojo said...

The easier connection to make that has been ignored for decades. Agent Blue was used as much in my AO as Agent Orange. Agent Blue used arsenic as the defoliant. Arsenic is a proven beyond discussion toxic poison that sets up life long neuropathy.