06 September 2014

VA Cites VA Researcher's 2013 Agent Orange-Prostate Cancer Study But Not Acceptable for Claims

When I was first diagnosed with prostate cancer, my oncologist was Dr. Mark Garzotto of the Portland VA Medical Center's Urology Oncology service. With his co-authors, Dr. Garzotto's article in the prestigious Cancer journal from the American Cancer Society revealed the disturbing conclusion that Agent Orange-exposed veterans are twice as likely to suffer highly aggressive forms of prostate cancer than vets without such exposures.

Dr. Garzotto provided his medical opinion that my own prostate cancer is, more likely than not, associated with Agent Orange exposure aboard the C-123s.

Dr. Garzotto's opinion in support of my claim for service connection has been dismissed by Portland VA Compensation & Pension as unqualified input because VAROs are directed by VBA to deny all C-123 claims.

VA respects Dr. Garzotto's findings about Agent Orange and prostate cancer, but disregards his medical finding about me as a patient under his care. Surpisingly, VA recently cited Dr. Garzotto's article on their web site and wrote:
 Research on prostate cancer and herbicides  
"The Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences concluded in its 1996 report Veterans and Agent Orange: Update 1996 and in future updates that there is limited/suggestive evidence of a positive association between prostate cancer and exposure to herbicides used in Vietnam. 
A 2013 study conducted at the Portland VA Medical Center and Oregon Health and Science University found that Veterans exposed to Agent Orange are not only at higher risk for prostate cancer, but they are more likely to have aggressive forms of the disease. Read the abstract for the publication, Agent Orange as a risk factor for high-grade prostate cancer. View more research on health effects of Agent Orange."
- See more at: http://www.publichealth.va.gov/exposures/agentorange/conditions/prostate_cancer.asp#sthash.RM5zHRwG.dpuf

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