Secretary of Veterans Affairs Considers Adding More Conditions Linked to Agent Orange Exposure

Vietnam Veteran saluting.New conditions are currently being considered by the VA and Secretary Shulkin to be added to the list of conditions linked to Agent Orange exposure for disability compensation following review of the National Academy of Medicine (NAM)’s latest report regarding Veterans and Agent Orange exposure.

This means many more Vietnam War veterans could be eligible for disability compensationThe conditions being considered are bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, Parkinson-like tremors and other ailments.

These new conditions would be in addition to the conditions already considered to be caused by Agent Orange exposure briefly outlined below. Additional links are provided for those interested in learning more.

  1. AL Amyloidosis: A rare disease caused when an abnormal protein, amyloid, enters and collects tissues or organs
  2. Chronic B-cell Leukemias: A type of cancer which affects a specific type of white blood cell
  3. Chloracne: (or similar acneform disease)A skin condition that occurs soon after exposure to chemicals and looks like common forms of acne seen in teenagers. Under VA’s rating regulations, it must be at least 10 percent disabling within one year of exposure to herbicides.
  4. Diabetes Mellitus Type 2: A disease characterized by high blood sugar levels resulting from the body’s inability to produce or respond properly to the hormone insulin
  5. Hodgkin’s Disease: A malignant lymphoma (cancer) characterized by progressive enlargement of the lymph nodes, liver, and spleen, and by progressive anemia
  6. Ischemic Heart Disease: A disease characterized by a reduced supply of blood to the heart, that can lead to chest pain (angina)
  7. Multiple Myeloma: A cancer of plasma cells, a type of white blood cell in bone marrow
  8. Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma: A group of cancers that affect the lymph glands and other lymphatic tissue
  9. Parkinson’s Disease: A progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects muscle movement
  10. Peripheral Neuropathy, Early-Onset: A nervous system condition that causes numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness. Under VA’s rating regulations, it must be at least 10 percent disabling within one year of herbicide exposure.
  11. Porphyria Cutanea Tarda: A disorder characterized by liver dysfunction and by thinning and blistering of the skin in sun-exposed areas. Under VA’s rating regulations, it must be at least 10 percent disabling within one year of exposure to herbicides.
  12. Prostate Cancer: Cancer of the prostate; one of the most common cancers among older men
  13. Respiratory Cancers(includes lung cancer): Cancers of the lung, larynx, trachea, and bronchus
  14. Soft Tissue Sarcomas(other than osteosarcoma, chondrosarcoma, Kaposi’s sarcoma, or mesothelioma): A specific group of malignant of cancers in body tissues such as muscle, fat, blood and lymph vessels, and connective tissues.

To read more about this developing story, click here.

UPDATE:  On November 8, VA Secretary Shulkin announced that he would recommend to the President that the new conditions be added to the Agent Orange list.  He refused to specify all the new conditions until a decision from the President is made.


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