Citation Nr: 18131215
Decision Date: 08/31/18	Archive Date: 08/31/18

DOCKET NO. 15-18 892
DATE:	August 31, 2018
REMANDED
Entitlement to service connection for a disability claimed as chronic pain and/or tendonitis. is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for a bilateral foot disability is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for hypertension is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for erectile dysfunction is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for diabetes mellitus is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is remanded.
Entitlement to service connection for a low back disability is remanded.
Whether new and material evidence has been received to reopen service connection for hypercholesterolemia is remanded.
Whether new and material evidence has been received to reopen service connection for sleep apnea is remanded.  
Entitlement to a disability rating in excess of 70 percent for dysthymia and panic disorder is remanded.
REASONS FOR REMAND
1. Entitlement to service connection for a disability claimed as chronic pain and/or tendonitis. is remanded.
2. Entitlement to service connection for a bilateral foot disability is remanded.
3. Entitlement to service connection for hypertension is remanded.
4. Entitlement to service connection for erectile dysfunction is remanded.
5. Entitlement to service connection for diabetes mellitus is remanded.
6. Entitlement to service connection for PTSD is remanded.
7. Entitlement to service connection for a low back disability is remanded.
8. Whether new and material evidence has been received to reopen service connection for hypercholesterolemia is remanded.
9. Whether new and material evidence has been received to reopen service connection for sleep apnea is remanded.  
10. Entitlement to a disability rating in excess of 70 percent for dysthymia and panic disorder is remanded.
Review of the record indicates that while the Veteran has reported receiving ongoing VA treatment at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center, the only records received from this facility in the past 10 years are an undated urinalysis report and a March 2010 podiatry consultation.  VA has a duty to assist a claimant in obtaining VA and other governmental treatment records.  See 38 U.S.C. § 5103A.  As such, remand is required to obtain any outstanding treatment records from this facility, as well as any other VA facility at which the Veteran has received treatment.  
Next, the Veteran seeks an increased rating for his service-connected dysthymia with panic disorder.  The last VA examination of this disability was in December 2011, over six years ago.  The Veteran has alleged an increase in the severity of this disability since that time.  Where the record does not adequately reveal the current state of the claimant’s disability, the fulfillment of the statutory duty to assist requires a thorough and contemporaneous medical examination.  See 38 U.S.C. § 5103A(d); Chotta v. Peake, 22 Vet. App. 80, 84 (2008).  
The matters are REMANDED for the following action:
1. Obtain the Veteran’s VA treatment records from the Battle Creek VA Medical Center, as well as any other VA facilities at which he has received treatment.  Any treatment records not already obtained must be associated with the claims file.  
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2. Schedule the Veteran for an examination by an appropriate clinician to determine the current severity of his service-connected psychiatric disorder.  The examiner should provide a full description of the disability and report all signs and symptoms necessary for evaluating the Veteran’s disability under the rating criteria.  The examiner must attempt to elicit information regarding the severity, frequency, and duration of symptoms.  To the extent possible, the examiner should identify any symptoms and social and occupational impairment due to the Veteran’s service-connected psychiatric disorder alone.
 
H. SEESEL
Veterans Law Judge
Board of Veterans’ Appeals
ATTORNEY FOR THE BOARD	Thomas D. Jones, Counsel

For A Complete Guide To VA Disability Claims and to find out more about your potential VA disability case and how to obtain favorable VA Rating Decision! Visit: VA-Claims.org

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