Service members understand that exposure to hazardous conditions and risks are a part of their job. They understand that as part of their service they may be required to serve overseas and or in areas that can pose a significant threat to their wellbeing and health. Therefore, both men and women serving may be exposed to hazards at military bases they are deployed at and call home, even for a short period. As a result of these exposures – which may involve certain hazardous chemicals and materials – many veterans have developed serious health problems. These health conditions that veterans suffer from may take years, or even decades to develop as the symptoms are not always immediate. Regardless, veterans deserve compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs for the medical problems they suffer and injuries sustained while serving.
Exposure to Agent Orange is an ongoing problem for veterans, which is why Senators are pushing to add bladder cancer to the VA’S list of conditions linked to the herbicide exposure in Vietnam and elsewhere. Our attorneys continue to advocate for reform and better treatment for our veterans. Even if bladder cancer, or other conditions, are not considered directly related to Agent Orange on the list of presumptive conditions, we have been successful in helping our veteran clients with winning their claim for service-connected disability benefits based on their exposures while serving causing bladder cancer and other conditions.
What is Agent Orange?
According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Agent Orange is a tactical herbicide used by the U.S. military to control Vietnam’s vegetation. It is a blend of tactical herbicides the U.S. military sprayed from 1962 to 1971 in the Vietnam War that is commonly used in removing trees and dense tropical foliage. The chemical was developed by the U.S. Department of Defense to be used explicitly in combat operations. Unfortunately, many veterans have varying levels of Agent Orange in their system from exposure during deployment which can create long-term disabilities and health problems.
Exposure to Agent Orange at Military Bases
The Department of Defense sprayed various herbicides across 4.5 million acres of Vietnam to destroy both forest covers and food crops used by North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops. Aircrafts were deployed to spray roads, rivers, canals, and farmland with the dangerous mixture of Agent Orange causing crops and water sources to hit. Dioxin is a chemical compound that lasts for many years in soil, lakes, and rivers.
Service members were exposed to Agent Orange because of the contaminated forest and soil. Human exposure to the chemical has also been found through meats, poultry, fish, dairy products, and eggs. Many veterans were exposed to Agent Orange throughout their time in service during the Vietnam War.
An on-going push from Senators urges the National Defense Authorization Act to add bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, and Parkinsonism to the VA’s list of conditions linked to the herbicide. It has been determined that thousands of military personnel have suffered serious health problems from exposure to Agent Orange, even causing long term health issues in veterans and family members.
Health Issues and Illnesses Related to Agent Orange
Veterans and service members exposed to Agent Orange can experience a wide-variety of different health problems associated with the herbicide. The EPA and World Health Organization are continuing to learn how exposure to Agent Orange can impact one’s health. The likelihood that Orange Agent exposure may cause health problems is greater than not. Thirty four thousand and counting frustrated and desperate veterans suffer from numerous health conditions, even including bladder cancer, other types of cancers, and other debilitating health problems like diabetes and heart conditions to name a few.
Some studies suggest that exposure to Agent Orange could be a factor in developing certain health conditions including:
- AL Amyloidosis
- Chronic B-cell Leukemia
- Diabetes Mellitus Type 2
- Hodgkin’s Disease
- Ischemic Heart Disease
- Multiple Myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Peripheral Neuropathy, Early- Onset
- Porphyria Cutanea Tarda
- Prostate Cancer
- Respiratory Cancers
- Soft Tissue Sarcomas
The Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs continue to claim that the medical and scientific evidence to support that exposure to Agent Orange could result in health concerns like those above is indefinite. Thousands of veterans and service members have bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, and Parkinsonism because of their military service, yet the VA continues to deny the care and benefits they earned.
Regrettably, far too many veterans and service members continue to endure health issuess caused by Agent Orange while the VA claims that they continue to wait for study results and push back on the scientific data and research correlating bladder cancer and other conditions to Agent Orange exposure. The House and Senate continue their fight for veterans suffering and even dying from Agent Orange related conditions until the bill adds bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, and Parkinsonism to the list of presumptive conditions.
Contact Disability Law Group for More Information About VA Disability Claims
If you are fighting for VA disability benefits, the attorneys at Disability Law Group are here to help you. Contact our Michigan disability attorneys for a free case review. We fight for the rights of our veterans to receive the disability benefits they deserve, and disability is all that we do. Our attorneys have decades of experience specializing strictly in disability law, and our client testimonials reflect our demonstrated success and compassion. Call us today for your free consultation.