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AllIn
01-06-2009, 13:28
I have read the stickies, searched the web, viewed AR 40-501 multiple times, and spoken to two recruiters and an individual at the goarmy.com number and have really not gotten any solid info. I also attempted to refer my recruiter to the "dial-a-medic" that I saw mentioned in a thread here. To this, the reply was "dial-a-medic?". I am not looking for a definitive response, but simple insight. "Wow, you've got a medical rap sheet and you ain't gettin' through MEPS" will suffice if that is what is thought.

I played college baseball and have had two surgeries on my left shoulder for a torn labrum. Surgery was only necessary for baseball and I have no pain and no limitations now. I also fractured my pubic bone, which has healed and I have no pain and no limitations (I've heard many a joke on this one, but feel free to attempt an original). I broke both wrists as a youngster and obviously am not affected. I passed a kidney stone in 2005. Now, the reason why I post, in 1996, as a high school football player, I had an MRI and was diagnosed with congenital cervical spinal stenosis. I was told my neck looks like a veteran NFL player. There are bone spurs and bulging discs in the cervical region. Docs said I could no longer play football, but I was not limited in anything else and I do not, and never have, had any pain outside of repeated stingers from odd helmet to helmet type contact on the football field. While in college, I had a cervical specialist look at my neck again and he cleared me to play football. I walked on at an SEC school and was asked where in the world I was coming from. When I told them my story they had me take another MRI to which their team docs, who were older, did not clear me to play for the same reasons as my high school doc. Again, football was only limitation (I never asked about jumping from airplanes). I can retrieve all of this documentation for MEPS.

What I seek from any with knowledge is if MEPS docs are going to look at my list and toss me out with a DQ. If so, I understand that the mere potential of my being a liability to my future team is warranted if I am thought to be one. I'm in great shape, strong, and absolutely love the attitude that a Special Forces soldier must have. It was devastating to lose football, my best sport, and I am concerned that I will be unable to pursue becoming one of America's finest because of the same. If you can offer any insight it will be greatly appreciated. If I have missed anything that has already been posted on here, please inform me (I have no doubts you will!) and I will be happy to search more.

Thanks.

olhamada
01-06-2009, 13:36
if MEPS docs are going to look at my list and toss me out with a DQ.

Yes.

It's not about what you can do right now, it's about your potential for these conditions to affect you and your teammates later - when it counts. It's also about what the US Government wants to pay for when (not if, but when) you declare disability.

Cervical stenosis WILL affect you. And jumping is harder on you than football (well, actually it's the landing that gets you).

AllIn
01-06-2009, 13:49
This is what I figured and was afraid of. I just felt like the recruiters weren't going to shoot me straight until I was actually DQ'd. I don't know if they get kudos for having someone take the ASVAB, but it feels like it.

As I put in my original post, I completely understand the concern for potential liability and would never want to jeopardize my team and the men around me.

Thanks for the reply.

Dozer523
01-06-2009, 13:50
have had two surgeries on my left shoulder for a torn labrum.
also fractured my pubic bone
I broke both wrists as a youngster
I passed a kidney stone in 2005.
diagnosed with congenital cervical spinal stenosis.
There are bone spurs and bulging discs in the cervical region.

Thanks.

How old are you Grandpa?:)

I feel the ol' Dozer advice gyros spinning up about to stabilize. . . Once again . . . It is your life, and 30 years from now you are the only one who will be living it. Decide what you want and how much you want it. Figure out how much cost there will be and decide if you want to pay it. If you want it and will pay ALL the cost then do it. Shorter rant? okay >> Don't help "them"s tell you no.

AllIn
01-06-2009, 14:07
How old are you Grandpa?:)

I feel the ol' Dozer advice gyros spinning up about to stabilize. . . Once again . . . It is your life, and 30 years from now you are the only one who will be living it. Decide what you want and how much you want it. Figure out how much cost there will be and decide if you want to pay it. If you want it and will pay ALL the cost then do it. Shorter rant? okay >> Don't help "them"s tell you no.


27 with a 50 year old neck. :rolleyes:

Repect for your don't let "them"'s attitude, but, aside from that, my concern is also about liability to a future team. We all know someone can "what if" something to death, but what if I land in a hot zone and tweak the neck and jeopardize the lives of good men because I pushed my way in. I know that may never happen, and I like to take it to the "them"'s, but it is a concern.

If I were to try and push through, what does "paying ALL the cost" consist of? How can I get around this doctor scaring documented medical history?

Peregrino
01-06-2009, 14:45
27 with a 50 year old neck. :rolleyes:

Repect for your don't let "them"'s attitude, but, aside from that, my concern is also about liability to a future team. We all know someone can "what if" something to death, but what if I land in a hot zone and tweak the neck and jeopardize the lives of good men because I pushed my way in. I know that may never happen, and I like to take it to the "them"'s, but it is a concern.

If I were to try and push through, what does "paying ALL the cost" consist of? How can I get around this doctor scaring documented medical history?

Doctors are morally obligated to have your best interests at heart. They aren't supposed to be influenced by your "inverse ratio of testosterone to common sense". It's not just liability to a future team. Injuries are a fact of life in SF. Something that would give a healthy soldier issues like you have now could put you a wheelchair like Christopher Reeve used to need. Trust me; the VA will be paying me and the Army will be dispensing drugs to me for the rest of my life for bone spurs that are a direct result of injuries sustained on active duty. If you check around here, you'll find out I'm one of the fortunate ones. My issues aren't crippling (yet). However, they have gotten worse with age. I can just about guarantee yours will too. FWIW

Eagle5US
01-06-2009, 14:47
Your interest in serving your country is admirable...however:
-You talk of getting to a Team as a forgone conclusion. There is an AWFUL LOT to get through before you start talking of liability to your Teammates. You haven't even made it through Basic Combat Training yet let alone the remainder of the pipeline.

-You can be disqualified for enlistment under AR 40-501, Ch 2-32, i:
i. Current or history of any condition that in the opinion of the medical officer will significantly interfere with the successful performance of military duty or training is disqualifying (should use specific ICD code whenever possible,
or 796.9).

It is a "catch-all" true, but it is one that would still require a waiver. In your case, there are other specifics in AR 40-501 secondary to your activities being limited after a diagnosis of your condition. depending on your "bulging discs" being actually classified as HNP's (herniated nucleus pulposis) or not.

You may be able to get into the military with various medical waivers, but to what end? What was previously mentioned about your "later life" rings very true. A soldier's life is not an easy one. Especially one that is from underneath a rucksack for any number of years. You want to grow old and be able to play with your grandkids? With your pre-existing medical conditions your chances of success as a professional soldier serving in a combat capacity are slim just because your body will ont be able to withstand the demands that will be put on it.
Nothing to do with the will...it is the structure that is failing. I se it all the time. Folks in the Army with waivers, constantly in my clinic or ER with problems relating to those "waivered conditions" in one way or another.

At this point, your question should be "am I going to be a liability to MYSELF". If there is ANY question regarding that, then you have answered your own thread.

Moving this to the Aid Station...

Eagle

AllIn
01-06-2009, 17:20
Thank you all for your responses.

I could have signed papers to play SEC football clearing the school of liability, but the "playing with my grandkids" theory kept me from that as well.

With regard to my speaking of being on a team as a foregone conclusion - I would have had to have been carried out to not make it. I recognize that's possible, but not something I figure anyone who wants to succeed in such an endeavor should consider. Quitting or failing would never have been options. Unfortunately, I have the ability, and the will, but not the body, for a career in athletics or the military.

Much respect to all of you. Thank you for protecting the freedoms that I enjoy. God bless.