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Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Comments Submitted on Your Behalf Regarding the Proposed Changes to the Ratings of the Endocrine System

In July, the VA published their proposed changes to the rating requirements for the Endocrine System. We received a number of responses to the proposed changes and have compiled and submitted them to the VA. Hopefully they will encourage the VA to adjust their changes to better compensate our veterans for their disabilities.

Here are the comments we submitted to the VA:

We at would like to submit the following comments in response to the proposed changes to the Endocrine System on behalf of our staff and veterans.

Item #1:

In Code 7903 for hypothyroidism, we suggest changing “myxedema” to “myxedema coma or crisis.” Myxedema can be present without causing the level of symptoms necessary to warrant the 100% rating. This is clarified in the discussion of this code, but not in the wording of the code itself. Similarly, the 30% rating specifies “without myxedema”. In truth the majority of cases will have myxedema symptoms, but will not be a coma or crisis. To avoid confusion or improper ratings, a rewording of this code may be advisable. The diagnosis alone of myxedema does NOT warrant a 100% rating by itself. Instead, it must be a myxedema coma or crisis.

Item #2:

This is a minor issue. There is a typo in the proposed changes. In the discussion of code 7911 for Addison’s disease, it is called an “adrenocortical” insufficiency. In the schedule of ratings below, however, it is referred to as “adrenalcortical” insufficiency. The second needs to be changed to adrenocortical in order to be consisted with the previous discussion of the change.

Item #3.

A number of our veterans have expressed issue with the removal of many of the 10% minimums for the need for continuous medication to control the symptoms. While it is true that the majority of medications used for Endocrine conditions do successfully control the symptoms, simply the fact that continuous medication must be administered requires a significant lifestyle adjustment, especially if additional medication is suddenly needed to avoid a life-threatening situation.

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