Dr. Norman Latov, MD, PhD of Weill Medical College, Cornell University noted in his writings what a growing list of medical professionals now recognize, that chronic peripheral neuropathy is associated with the cancers and treatments for the cancers.
One of the worst results of exposure to Agent Orange is cancer, but the list is growing of what this toxin has done to both the people of Vietnam and in other countries where it was used or stored.
Now in 2010 after decades of denial that it could even cause Chronic Neuropathy, now the Institute of Medicine IOM states that PN does not necessarily resolve within one year. In other words Agent Orange causes Chronic Peripheral Neuropathy. But to add insult to injury the VA demands that the veteran must have had symptoms or a diagnosis within one year of exposure. This is during a time medical science did not have the tools for diagnosis and seldom recognized the symptoms, let alone at the 10% disability level that the VA requires. The frustration of veterans continues with such demands from those who should know better.
In 2014, this video was published by the New York Times. It says it all and shows the double talk by so many in power to protect the chemical companies over Agent Orange. Click here to see the video:
Beyond the cancers and other acceptable diseases caused by Agent Orange, it is imperative that medical professionals understand that extremely painful or crippling neuropathy is not something that should be ignored or dismissed by medical practitioners. While many highly respected neurologists continue to deny that Agent Orange could cause chronic neuropathy, in 2012 the VA began to recognize the obvious about chronic neuropathy and Agent Orange with the recognition by the National Institute of Health.
All that being said, VA still insists on talking about neuropathy being diagnosed in the decades after Vietnam, as if medical science had the tools for diagnosis or could even recognize the symptoms, demand that the veteran prove early onset at the 10% disabling level! This is an unrealistic bogus requirement imposed by the VA creating yet another hurtle for veterans.
Neuropathy must be addressed both by an understanding of neuropathic pain treatment options and possible treatments and research to find ways to address prevention and treatment for the nerve damage itself.
Recent findings and suggestions by the Peripheral Nerve Society in their “Journal of the Peripheral Nerve System” has outlined many findings and research needs.
Our understanding of the neuropathies continues to grow and with the recent change in VA policy recognizing that Peripheral Neuropathy does not necessary resolve within two years, but often becomes chronic over time, it is increasingly imperative that medicine correct its long held poor attitudes toward neuropathy patients.
MedPage Today published an article on May 13, 2013 regarding the increasing evidence that this horrible toxin is strongly linked to many types of cancer, only highlights what has been suspected for decades while veterans and their families have suffered with growing, but limited help and recognition.
Agent Orange: Still Taking a Toll on Vets by Cole Petrochko, Staff Writer, MedPage Today Published: May 13, 2013 – Reviewed by Robert Jasmer, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco and Dorothy Caputo, MA, BSN, RN, Nurse Planner
To read the entire article go to: www.MedPageToday.com/HematologyOncology
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