"This is a very, very strong predictor of lethal cancer," said urologist Dr. Mark Garzotto, who worked on the study at the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Oregon."If you're a person who's otherwise healthy and you've been exposed to Agent Orange, that has important implications for whether you should be screened or not screened," he said. (click here for full text of published article)Dr. Garzotto happens to be my own VA urologist and already provided an opinion that I was exposed
Last week we were informed by VA's Deputy Director of Post Deployment Health that Agent Orange exams are no longer allowed for our exposed C-123 veterans because of new internal VA rules requiring the exam be restricted to just Vietnam veterans or veterans in contact with LIQUID Agent Orange. Because our exposure was to the dried dioxin residue on the airplane which left it "heavily contaminated" we are prohibited from seeking an Agent Orange exam.
We believe Dr. Garzotto's research makes clear that all C-123 veterans need to be examined if they haven't already been seen for Agent Orange exposure. Do this promptly even though we are now excluded from the VA system.
The current Agent Orange Registry page on the VA site is outdated where that it says all veterans who believe they've been exposed may ask for the AO exam. "All veterans" does not include C-123 veterans as of last week. Outdated, or there may be some sort of confidential VA Post Deployment Health internal memo used to exclude us, but this new exclusion from the Agent Orange Registry has been confirmed with their Deputy Director and veterans already denied exams. The version for C-123 veterans is:
"Other potential Agent Orange exposures
- Veterans who may have been exposed to herbicides during a military operation or as a result of testing, transporting, or spraying herbicides for military purposes. Learn about herbicide tests and storage outside Vietnam. Agent Orange or Dioxin dried on surfaces does not present a significant threat to human health. Veterans are eligible if they were in the presence of liquid Agent Orange such as when Agent Orange was sprayed, tested or transported"