What Does Agent Orange Do to the Body?
Exposure to Agent Orange is associated with many diseases. It can lead to diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and several forms of cancer. If you were exposed to Agent Orange during your military service, you may qualify for VA disability benefits.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) grants disability benefits to veterans who develop medical conditions from specific events during their military service. Usually, veterans must show a connection between their military service and their current, diagnosed condition in order to qualify for benefits. However, VA presumes service connection if you were exposed to Agent Orange and later developed certain conditions.
Medical Conditions Associated with Agent Orange Exposure
VA has recognized certain medical conditions as having a strong association with Agent Orange exposure, including:
- AL Amyloidosis: A condition that occurs when a rare and abnormal protein infects your tissues or organs.
- Chronic B-cell Leukemias: A type of blood cancer that affects the white blood cells.
- Chloracne: A skin condition resulting from herbicide exposure and resembling severe acne.
- Hodgkin’s disease: A type of lymphoma cancer involving abnormal cell growth in the lymph nodes.
- Ischemic Heart Disease: A progressive condition in which the heart receives inadequate blood supply, resulting in chest pain and other complications.
- Multiple Myeloma: A blood cancer affecting plasma cells.
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma: A cancer of the lymphatic system.
- Parkinson’s Disease: A chronic nervous system disorder that can lead to a progressive lack of mobility and muscle strength.
- Peripheral Neuropathy: A nervous system disorder that causes a number of physical complications, such as weakness, numbness, and constant tingling sensations.
- Porphyria Cutanea Tarda: A liver condition that can cause sun-exposed skin to blister and become more fragile.
- Prostate Cancer: A cancer of the prostate in men.
- Respiratory Cancer: Lung cancer and other cancers of the respiratory system.
- Soft Tissue Sarcomas: Cancers that affect the body’s soft tissues, such as muscle, fat, and connective tissue.
- Type 2 Diabetes: A condition resulting from a lack of insulin response, which leads to chronically high blood sugar levels.
If your military service records show you served in Vietnam between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975, or in certain units in Korea from September 1, 1967 to July 31, 1969, you are presumed to have been exposed to Agent Orange. Therefore, if you develop any of the above-mentioned conditions, service connection will be granted.
VA also recognizes that veterans whose service involved duty on or near the perimeters of military bases in Thailand anytime between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975 may have been exposed to Agent Orange as well. While Thailand veterans are not entitled to the same presumptive service connection, they may still qualify for VA disability benefits.
What Evidence You Need to Prove Agent Orange Exposure
To receive VA disability benefits for a medical condition caused by exposure to Agent Orange, you must submit certain evidence along with your claim:
- A medical diagnosis of any of the conditions listed above
- Evidence that you served in Vietnam or the Korean DMZ during the above-mentioned timeframes.
If your medical condition does not appear on the list above, you may still be able to receive VA disability benefits due to Agent Orange exposure. However, you will need additional evidence to support your case:
- A current, diagnosis of your medical condition
- Evidence of a connection between Agent Orange and your medical condition. This usually requires a medical opinion.
However, it may be difficult to produce enough connecting evidence to satisfy VA, even if your doctor believes your current condition results from exposure to Agent Orange. Nonetheless, the team of veterans lawyers at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD may be able to help.
VA Disability Compensation Rates for Agent Orange-Related Conditions
If you are granted service connection for a medical condition due to Agent Orange exposure, your monthly compensation amounts will depend on your VA disability rating. VA disability ratings are assigned based on the severity of your condition.
The VA disability rating scale runs from 0 to 100 percent. As of December 2020, monthly compensation amounts are as follows:
- 0 percent disability rating: $0.00 per month
- 10 percent disability rating: $144.14 per month
- 20 percent disability rating: $284.93 per month
- 30 percent disability rating: $441.35 per month
- 40 percent disability rating: $635.77 per month
- 50 percent disability rating: $905.04 per month
- 60 percent disability rating: $1,146.39 per month
- 70 percent disability rating: $1,444.71 per month
- 80 percent disability rating: $1,679.35 per month
- 90 percent disability rating: $1,887.18 per month
- 100 percent disability rating: $3,146.42 per month
For a Free VA Disability Case Evaluation, Call 800-544-9144 Today
The team of veterans lawyers at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD may be able to help you with your VA disability claims and appeals. For a free case evaluation with a member of our staff, call us at 800-544-9144.
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