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Just got disturbing news... need advice from service members

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by PhoenixZorn, Apr 5, 2005.

  1. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    My sister has had 2 surgeries on her foot, and was just given full clearance by the doctor to run PFTs in the Marine Corps... problem is, she still feels excruciating pain when she runs, and does not consider it healed. I have a feeling a bit of Physical Therapy would help, since she has likely lost lost of Range of Motion from being casted for a month, then nursing it for the last few months.

    Her CO is making her run the PFT, and I need some suggestions. As most of you know, there are no "second opinions" in the Military, and as such, my sister will likely have to run the PFT. I instructed her to do so, but not to strain herself while she does it. She's a tough girl, a gymnast, and has been a Marine for 5 years now... she knows how to handle pain, but I'm sure this is different for her because it's more of a "lack of use" pain. She can easily max out situps, pushups and flex arm hang or pullups... whichever she chooses to do. She has a time limit of like 28 minutes for the three mile run, and I said to just jog the whole thing, and try not to limp, as it will just hurt more later if she does.

    In my own Marine Corps experience, it is very easy to run the 3 miles in the alotted time, even while doing a fast walk, so she should have no trouble finishing it if she takes it easy. Did I do the right thing in telling her to run it, or should she go to the doctor again and explain the pain? She has not had any physical therapy yet that I am aware of, which is goofy to me, since my wife is a physical therapist and sees injuries far less severe in her office all the time. Even my wife, when she had the same surgery had to do physical therapy on her own foot to reduce the loss of RoM. What do you guys think?
     
  2. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

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    where is she stationed at? if you like i can talk to her. i have been in for 7 years and might be able to help her out. i know a lot of loop holes in a lot of situations.

    if she goes to medical again she should be cleared. the problem is if she is put on a light duty board then she can be seperated from the Corps. to some not a big deal. the thing with that is she cant get promoted, she cant leave the area, and she may not be able to do her job.

    she idd loose RoM from being casted. its a fact. she should exercise it, bbut not run on it if the foot isnt ready to. it could be very bad.

    PM me and ill say more.
    Grant
     
  3. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks Grant, yeah, I know all about the Light Duty Board... i was on it... for pretty much the same reason. Couldn't run. She's a reservist in Wisconsin, so she just has drill twice a month. Like I said, shes a tough little $hit, so I expect she'll do fine on the PFT as long as she doesn't nurse it too badly...

    By the way, I eventually got off the LD board.. =)
     
  4. rugger03

    rugger03 1/2 ton status

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    How long has she had the cast off? Is this a service related injury, or did she do it outside of her duties? Civilian or military Dr? If she just recently got the cast off they should give her some time to build it back up. She could probally walk the 5k in under the max time... even if she doesnt pass it she will probally just be counciled and put on "remedial Pt" which in the reserves is really a joke anyway. They are usually hurting for bodies and if its a one time thing i doubt anything would happen to her as far as being discharged. we had guys that missed drill for months and they were allowed to stay with the unit.

    I would recomend she first talk to her Pltsgt, or thier doc and see what they can do. If the Pltsgt wants he can get her an extra month or so to make that happen, and of course the doc has magic powers himself.
     
  5. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    She's got a month of reserve service left, then one year of inactive reserves. the doc is a civy, and misunderstood her when she said she just wants to get out... he wrote a letter saying she was completely fit for military duty. I just talked to her and she said she can't even do the simplest of her Gymnastics abilities, which is just standing on your toes (not like ballet) and balancing. She's going to see the doctor tomorrow, and he wrote the letter without seeing her for the past 10 months... I'm amazed that he could write it even if he had seen her in the last month, without a "within a week" checkup.

    She had a - yeah, funny stuff - bunion surgery... twice... on the same foot... and has been on light duty for the last 10 months. Between surgeries, she was able to run about 1 mile before immense pain stopped her in her tracks, and now she hasn't run an actual PFT for the last 2 years. She has drill this weekend and they want her to run a full 3 mile PFT. I've heard tell of people doing a partial PFT, but I don't know for sure... Basically, she is not healed, and the doc made a huge error in writing the "all clear" letter before seeing her again. She is out in a month, and would prefer to get a medical discharge, since her pain truly is debilitating. She can barely walk her dog down the block now without it hurting, and like i said before, she's a tought little chit... doing more than most guys could ever think of doing with her body... a champion gymnast and a Marine... she's hardcore.

    I hope she lays it on that doc... but she's very timid. I suggested she bring her husband to her appointment, since he's not so shy when it comes to "telling it like it is." If it were me in her position, I'd be really pissed, and I'd tell that doc where to shove it, right before tellinghim I was going to a different doc... unless it was an honest mistake, which it sounds like it may have been. Apparently, if she runs this last PFT, she qualifies for her standard Honorable Discharge in a month, but is then still eligible for deployment for a year. She would prefer to have the medical discharge and disability from the VA... yeah, VA healthcare sucks, but the bennies for a permanently broken foot is 25% disability for life... not a bad deal.
     
  6. jarheadk5

    jarheadk5 1/2 ton status

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    **Just to qualify my comments - I was active-duty in a Reserve helicopter squadron for 4 years, then a Reservist in the same unit for 3 more years (2 of which were active-duty mobilization).

    If the surgery wasn't to correct a problem/injury caused by her service to the Corps, then she won't be eligible for VA disability for it. On the same note, I don't think she'd be eligible for a "medical discharge" if the surgery wasn't to correct a problem caused by her service to the Corps. She should still be TNPQ (Temporarily Not Physically Qualified) after a surgical procedure, especially on her foot, when there's a PFT coming. Sounds like she needs to re-visit the doctor and re-explain the situation to him, so that he can re-consider his judgement. Of course if the surgery WAS for something service-related, then that's a different story. I don't understand why a civy doctor would be caring for a service injury, but hey - this is Mother Green we're talking about... she does strange things.
    Now if everything fails and she still has to do the PFT, I'd highly advise her to gently stretch for as long as possible before the run starts, and to take it nice & easy during. She's got 27 or 28 minutes, USE THEM! Of course, if she re-injures herself during the run, she needs to tell the corpsman ASAP and get it logged in her med. record that she was injured during the PFT run... THEN any injury she got WILL be service-connected, and will be a qualifier for disability and VA care.
     
  7. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    Civy doctor because it's a Marine Reserve Base, and the closest Naval Hospital is 5 hours from her base... the Corps gave her the option to go to her own ortho-doc, so she did.
     
  8. mcinfantry

    mcinfantry 1/2 ton status

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    1) unless it has changed since 1994, even if she saw a navy doctor and was put on light duty her CO can order her to run, and she HAS to do it. ask me how i know. a navy doc, much less civilian has no role in the chain of command.

    2) she will have to prove the bunions were caused by the USMC to get ANY disability. if she has a history of the problem while in training, (or any other active duty stints) good. i have seen the military dodge the responsibilty based on the fact reservists are unacountable 28 days a month, so then its hard to prove service connected injury since they will blame it on civilian injuries

    my .02
     
  9. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    Well... they weren't there before she joined... as far as I know... but apparently, she is doing the PFT but her CO said she doesn't have to do the run... which means she gets out with an honorable discharge in a month, and probably an RE-2 or RE-3 reenlistment code... which basically means she needs a medical waiver to get back in for deployment if they call up her unit.
     
  10. jarheadk5

    jarheadk5 1/2 ton status

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    Interesting... The nearest Naval Hospital to us is Bethesda (2.5hrs away), so if we needed stuff done, they'd send us to McGuire AFB, where there's an AF hospital.
     

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