Lung Cancer and Your Claim for VA Benefits

Lung Cancer and Your Claim for VA Benefits

Lung cancer starts as the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the lungs and can potentially spread to other parts of the body. The main types of lung cancer are non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer. Non-small cell lung cancer makes up about 85% of lung cancer cases.

Symptoms of lung cancer include a chronic cough, pain in the chest, shoulder, or back, change in color or volume of sputum, shortness of breath, voice changes, and coughing up blood. 

Surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, targeted treatments, and immunotherapy may be used as treatments, either alone or in combination. Each treatment has its own potential side effects that could result in other health issues.

Lung cancer is a presumptive disease for veterans who were exposed to Agent Orange. Veterans with boots on the ground service in Vietnam, along with other veterans who served in locations where VA has conceded herbicide exposure, do not have to provide a medical nexus, or link, between service and their diagnosis when applying for VA benefits for lung cancer. In addition to lung cancer, cancers of the trachea, larynx, and bronchus are presumptive conditions for these veterans. Lung cancer is also a presumptive condition for veterans who were exposed to radiation during military service, along with many other types of cancer.

The VA rates any cancers as 100% disabling while active and for six months following the last treatment. After that, the condition will be re-evaluated and rated based on residual symptoms and/or complications.

If your service-connected lung cancer is now in remission but you experience other disabilities as a complication from cancer or the treatment of cancer, these disabilities may also be eligible for service connection.

If you need assistance with your appeal, contact Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick. Our veterans law practitioners have experience with every aspect of the appeals process. Call us at 401-331-6300 for a no-cost case evaluation.

Category: Veterans Law