Five Common Disabilities Tied To Fort McClellan
This article details the five common disabilities tied to Fort McClellan. For much of the Cold War period, Agent Orange, a powerful defoliant, was widely used in Vietnam and elsewhere. Before they sprayed this chemical over the jungles of Southeast Asia, many Veterans spent time at Fort McClellan, which was the DoD’s main chemical warfare training facility.
For years, the Veterans Administration denied that there was a link between Agent Orange and serious illness. In the face of overwhelming evidence, the VA reversed course. Now, benefits are available for Veterans who face toxic exposure disabilities related to Agent Orange.
That being said, there is a difference between theoretical availability and money in your pocket. A VA disability lawyer fights for you, so you get the compensation you deserve.
This disease affects white blood cells. Since these cells prevent infections and illnesses, leukemia leaves victims open to a wide range of conditions. It is particularly common in men over 60. Almost all Agent Orange/Fort McClellan Veterans are men over 60. In 2010, the VA conclusively recognized the link between Agent Orange and leukemia. As a result, in most cases, Veterans must only establish an illness and a posting at a place like Fort McClellan.
The same thing applies to the link between Agent Orange and multiple myeloma, which is a form of bone cancer. Multiple myeloma is very difficult to diagnose. Some patients have no symptoms at all. Other patients experience seemingly random symptoms like:
- Brittle bones,
- Joint pain,
- Low blood count,
- High calcium level,
- Hyperviscosity (thick blood which inhibits blood flow to the brain and produces confusion),
- Nervous system impairment, and
- Kidney problems.
Unless the doctor knows about the patient’s military background at Fort McClellan, these symptoms usually do not add up to multiple myeloma. Since the disease often spreads before doctors properly diagnose it, VA multiple myeloma impairment ratings are often inaccurate.
This disease is a form of lymphoma, or cancer of the lymph nodes. Much like leukemia, which is basically blood cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma inhibits the body’s ability to fight infection. Since Hodgkin’s Disease often begins in the upper body and Hodgkin’s patients have telltale Reed-Sternberg cells in their bloodstreams, Hodgkin’s is usually easier to diagnose than non-Hodgkin’s. Hodgkin’s is fatal about a fifth of the time.
Early diagnosis is also the key to surviving prostate cancer. This gland controls sperm levels in men. However, if caught early enough, these tumors are relatively easy to isolate and treat. Once advanced symptoms appear, like trouble urinating and pelvic discomfort, prostate cancer is much more difficult to treat. There is a conclusive link between Agent Orange exposure and prostate cancer, so maximum benefits are usually available.
As the name implies, non-Hodgkin’s is a lot like Hodgkin’s Disease. Non-Hodgkin’s is much more difficult to diagnose. The cancer may appear in any of the body’s lymph nodes. Additionally, there are no telltale Reed-Sternberg cells to assist diagnosis. As a result, non-Hodgkin’s is often at an advanced stage before doctors find it. So, VA disability ratings are usually higher in non-Hodgkin’s cases.
Work With Dedicated Attorneys
There is a conclusive link between Agent Orange exposure and many serious illnesses. For a free consultation with an experienced Veterans disability lawyer, contact Cameron Firm, PC at 800-861-7262 or fill out the contact box to your right. Because we are here to represent Veterans nationwide.
This article is for educational and marketing purposes only. Therefore, it does not create an attorney-client relationship.