Author Topic: Military (Active/Separated/Retired), and TRICARE (Life/Standard/Remote/ Life)  (Read 65032 times)

sbrn

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Have a few questions for anyone here that had their AN while active duty. While tricare has not been a huge issue for me (i am not near a base ) finding out what will happen to me after surgery is like finding a needle in a haystack. I contacted the VA but they cant/wont tell me anything that's helpfull. I an having Trans lab surgery which mean I will have some balance issues and also be SSD on the right side. I am trying to find out how the military and VA are going to react to this. Will I be required to meet an MEB? What am I looking at with Disability with the VA when I do retire? Since I am close to 20 anyways is the possibility good the AF will leave me alone and just let me retire? Any insight to these would be most helpfull.
Husband diagnosed 7/10 with 1.2 x 1.1cm AN
Translab 26 Oct 10
Baptist medical center Nashville TN

GM

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I too was on active duty when my AN was found.  I kept failing my annual hearing test (I was in the Air Force and worked on aircraft).  I was originally steered into surgery and I took some time to investigate the process and asked about Gamma Knife (Radiation)...I went that route.  As for the medical review boards...they are conviened if your world wide deployment status is affected by your AN or treatment.  I was originally scheduled for a MRB, but it was called off since my WW deployable status wasn't affected.

Ironically my AN was annotated on my VA evaluation as 0% but I didn't get any disability comp for it...amazing sice I lost 95% blalane in my left ear and a good bit of hearing.  I'd be happy to talk over the phone if you'd like.  Just send me an email on this site....(don't post your phone number in these posts), and I'd gladly talk to you.

Gary
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

john j

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Re: Military (Active/Separated/Retired), and TRICARE (Life/Standard/Remote/ Life)
« Reply #32 on: September 22, 2010, 11:57:12 am »
To SBRN:  I had AN surgery while on active duty in 1969.  My VA disability rating is 20%....10% for the SSD and 10% for scalp/skull scarring resulting from the surgery (I don't really understand that one, but I'll take it).   A higher rating would be awarded to you if there are additional complications or if your "good" ear's hearing level is also diminished.   If you live in a State offering County Veterans Service Offices, I recommend you get the latest info there.  Hope all goes well.

JJW
« Last Edit: September 29, 2010, 10:08:39 pm by john j »
AN surgery Jan 1969, Wilford Hall Air Force Hosp, Lackland AFB, TX

Doc

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My AN was summarily missed by the Military Doctor's at Keesler Medical Center in the late 70's. Their explanation for my SSD (Left) was aircraft noise and my failure to properly wear hearing protection...basically I was told I was a dumb ass and it was all my fault I went deaf.

Thank goodness I have excellent medical insurance with my employer. I'd hate to think of having to rely on TriCare and / or any government agency for my survival, especially since we went to war in Afghanistan and Iraq. Active Duty GI's deserve the full attention of the "system" and are rightfully getting it...as best the system can provide. I feel sorry for anyone else who has no choice but to rely on the VA for example.

Take Care!
  ;)
Doc - USAF Retired!
Jul 2009: Left Translab to debulk a 5cm x 5cm AN. Jan 2010: CyberKnife Radio Surgery to combat remaining AN; approximately 3cm.  MRI Jan 12: Good progress. Last MRI Jan 13: All Good! My life got much better when I received my Scleral Lens.

moe

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Sorry about your bad luck with Keesler, Doc. Plus they didn't have MRI's back then, even if they did they probably would have done the same thing!

I was originally going to have my surgery at Wilford Hall in San Antonio with a surgeon who my husband's med school buddy recommended.(My husband is an Occupational Medicine Doc in the navy)

But they kept pushing me off because of the active duty guys, which i understood. finally got a date, and the surgeon was going to be PSD ing, so I ended up referred to Dr. Crawford at Madigan who was very good.
So far so good for me.
I've had a couple of surgeries at UW in Seattle, thanks to Tricare, but then again my husband is still active duty. I think I'm done with all the major surgeries (I said NO MORE) , and plan to have a easy brow lift at Madigan, along with another go at the BAHA.
Maureen :)
06/06-Translab 3x2.5 vascular L AN- MAMC,Tacoma WA
Facial nerve cut,reanastomosed.Tarsorrhaphy
11/06. Gold weight,tarsorrhaphy reversed
01/08- nerve transposition-(12/7) UW Hospital, Seattle
5/13/10 Gracilis flap surgery UW for smile restoration :)
11/10/10 BAHA 2/23/11 brow lift/canthoplasty

Doc

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I remember you saying before your husband is a Military Doctor. My guess is you're probably right; they would have missed the AN even with an MRI.
Jul 2009: Left Translab to debulk a 5cm x 5cm AN. Jan 2010: CyberKnife Radio Surgery to combat remaining AN; approximately 3cm.  MRI Jan 12: Good progress. Last MRI Jan 13: All Good! My life got much better when I received my Scleral Lens.

Hcash

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Has anyone that is ex military went though the VA with your AN?  My husband is ex military and lost his job just before being diagnosed.  We are trying to get his benefits started though the VA so he can go though them for treatment now. 

GM

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If your looking to file for benefits (VA), I'd suggest contacting your nearest Disabled American Vetrans, they offer a free service for vetrans in filing for VA benefits.  I'm sure that they can also offer other advice when looking for treatment for vetrans.

http://www.dav.org/veterans/VeteransAffairs.aspx

   
...this Vetrans Administration site should also be helpful.

http://www.vba.va.gov/VBA/

Best wishes for your husband...this ANA Support Forum site is a Godsend...I'd suggest that you have him post a few posts here as well...

Gary



« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 07:58:56 am by GM »
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

GM

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Any new military veteran's out there...active duty, seperated, or retired trying to deal with TRICARE and your AN?
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

GM

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Any new military veteran's out there...active duty, seperated, or retired trying to deal with TRICARE and your AN?
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

OTO

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GM - there is an active duty person Chris75 who started a thread in the Microsurgery Options subforum.   He's going to Tripler in Hawaii....

GM

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Thanks...
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

lori67

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Just thought I'd throw out a little note that may be of interest..

My husband just retired from the Navy at the end of January.   I recently started seeing an audiologist at the Naval hospital and need to get a new BAHA as mine, sadly, bit the dust.   :'(  My last audiologist, who I saw before my husband retired, and I determined that I need and Intenso, rather than the Divino that I currently have.  I spoke to the insurance reps at Cochlear about the situation and they said that as long as I had a letter of medical necessity from my doctor, they were confident it would be covered by Tricare.

Imagine my surprise when I found out that Tricare will only pay for the BAHA for the retiree, not the dependent family member, even when the initial BAHA was covered because he was active duty at that point.  The neurotologist and audiologist are fighting them on it because I was misdiagnosed by the MTF for 5 years to begin with, and they feel that if my AN had been diagnosed sooner, I might not need the BAHA in the first place!

What I found even more interesting is that if I need a new abutment, Tricare will pay for that procedure, but they will not pay anything towards a processor.  Huh?  Why would a need a new abutment if I don't have anything to hook up to it?

So, those of you who are active duty or AD dependents, be aware that your coverage may change after retirement.  Perhaps it would have been helpful for that information to be shared during TAPS class?  Fingers crossed that logic will prevail in this case,otherwise I'm looking at coughing up a few thousand dollars for a new processor.  I'm not terribly optimistic that Tricare will be logical.

Lori
Right 3cm AN diagnosed 1/2007.  Translab resection 2/20/07 by Dr. David Kaylie and Dr. Karl Hampf at Baptist Hospital in Nashville.  R side deafness, facial nerve paralysis.  Tarsorraphy and tear duct cauterization 5/2007.  BAHA implant 11/8/07. 7-12 nerve jump 9/26/08.

GM

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Lori,   I hope this all get hammered out for you soon. 

As a side note...you as a dependent who was misdiagnosed by the military has something that your husband does not....you could actually sue the military. 

GM
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

moe

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Lori,
Sorry to hear of your run in with Tricare re: your BAHA.
Yep that could be my scenario when my husband retires in a couple of years (?) Though I WILL be going to the same hospital that did the brain surgery and BAHA (Madigan). I wonder if that will help, in case I do have probs down the road. (wishful thinking on my part)

Let us know what transpires, and hope, (fingers crossed) that you get your BAHA. Geez.
Maureen
06/06-Translab 3x2.5 vascular L AN- MAMC,Tacoma WA
Facial nerve cut,reanastomosed.Tarsorrhaphy
11/06. Gold weight,tarsorrhaphy reversed
01/08- nerve transposition-(12/7) UW Hospital, Seattle
5/13/10 Gracilis flap surgery UW for smile restoration :)
11/10/10 BAHA 2/23/11 brow lift/canthoplasty