The Schedule for Rating Disabilities

(original, current text with links to our interpretations)

Page 1 of 3

This page contains the original VASRD text for the VASRD Principles, conditions of the Musculoskeletal System, the Sensory Organs, Infectious Diseases, Immune Disorders, and Nutritional Deficiencies. For the original VASRD text of conditions for the Respiratory System, the Cardiovascular System, the Digestive System, the Genitourinary System, and all Gynecological Conditions, see page 2. For the origianl VASRD text for the Hemic and Lymphatic Systems, the Skin, the Endocrine System, Neurological Conditions, Convulsive Disorders, Mental Disorders, and Dental and Oral conditions, see page 3.

Subpart A—General Policy in Rating
Subpart B—Disability Ratings
The Musculoskeletal System
The Organs of Special Sense
Infectious Diseases, Immune Disorders and Nutritional Deficiencies

 

Subpart A—General Policy in Rating

4.1 Essentials of evaluative rating
4.2 Interpretation of examination reports
4.3 Resolution of reasonable doubt
4.6 Evaluation of evidence
4.7 Higher of two evaluations
4.9 Congenital or developmental defects
4.10 Functional impairment
4.13 Effect of change of diagnosis
4.14 Avoidance of pyramiding
4.15 Total disability ratings
4.16 Total disability ratings for compensation based on unemployability of the individual
4.17 Total disability ratings for pension based on unemployability and age of the individual
4.17a Misconduct etiology
4.18 Unemployability
4.19 Age in service-connected claims
4.20 Analogous ratings
4.21 Application of rating schedule
4.22 Rating of disabilities aggravated by active service
4.23 Attitude of rating officers
4.24 Correspondence
4.25 Combined ratings table
4.26 Bilateral factor
4.27 Use of diagnostic code numbers
4.28 Prestabilization rating from date of discharge from service
4.29 Ratings for service-connected disabilities requiring hospital treatment or observation
4.30 Convalescent ratings
4.31 A no-percent rating

Subpart B—Disability Ratings

The Musculoskeletal System

4.40 Functional loss
4.41 History of injury
4.42 Complete medical examination of injury cases
4.43 Osteomyelitis
4.44 The bones
4.45 The joints
4.46 Accurate measurement
4.55 Principles of combined ratings
4.56 Evaluation of muscle disabilities
4.57 Static foot deformities
4.58 Arthritis due to strain
4.59 Painful motion
4.61 Examination
4.62 Circulatory disturbances
4.63 Loss of use of hand or foot
4.64 Loss of use of both buttocks
4.66 Sacroiliac joint
4.67 Pelvic bones
4.68 Amputation rule
4.69 Major hand
4.70 Inadequate examinations
4.71 Measurement of ankylosis and joint motion
4.71a Schedule of ratings—musculoskeletal system
Acute, Subacute, or Chronic Diseases
Prosthetic Implants
Amputations: Upper Extremity
Amputations: Lower Extremity
The Shoulder and Arm
The Elbow and Forearm
The Wrist
Evaluation of Ankylosis or Limitation of Motion of Single or Multiple Digits of the Hand
The Spine
The Hip and Thigh
The Knee and Leg
The Ankle
Shortening of the Lower Extremity
The Foot
The Skull
The Ribs
The Coccyx
4.73 Schedule of ratings—muscle injuries
The Shoulder Girdle and Arm
The Forearm and Hand
The Foot and Leg
The Pelvic Girdle and Thigh Rating
Torso and Neck
Miscellaneous

The Organs of Special Sense

4.75 General considerations for evaluating visual impairment
4.76 Visual acuity
4.76a Computation of average concentric contraction of visual fields
4.77 Visual fields
4.78 Muscle function
4.79 Schedule of ratings—eye
Diseases of the Eye
Impairment of Central Visual Acuity
Impairment of Visual Field
Impairment of Muscle Function
4.85 Evaluation of hearing impairment
4.86 Exceptional patterns of hearing impairment
4.87 Schedule of ratings—ear
Diseases of the Ear
4.87a Schedule of ratings—other sense organs

Infectious Diseases, Immune Disorders and Nutritional Deficiencies

4.88a Chronic fatigue syndrome
4.88b Schedule of ratings—infectious diseases, immune disorders, and nutritional deficiencies
4.88c Ratings for inactive nonpulmonary tuberculosis initially entitled after August 19, 1968
4.89 Ratings for inactive nonpulmonary tuberculosis in effect on August 19, 1968

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Subpart A—General Policy in Rating

§4.1 Essentials of evaluative rating.

This rating schedule is primarily a guide in the evaluation of disability resulting from all types of diseases and injuries encountered as a result of or incident to military service. The percentage ratings represent as far as can practicably be determined the average impairment in earning capacity resulting from such diseases and injuries and their residual conditions in civil occupations. Generally, the degrees of disability specified are considered adequate to compensate for considerable loss of working time from exacerbations or illnesses proportionate to the severity of the several grades of disability. For the application of this schedule, accurate and fully descriptive medical examinations are required, with emphasis upon the limitation of activity imposed by the disabling condition. Over a period of many years, a veteran’s disability claim may require reratings in accordance with changes in laws, medical knowledge and his or her physical or mental condition. It is thus essential, both in the examination and in the evaluation of disability, that each disability be viewed in relation to its history.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.2 Interpretation of examination reports.

Different examiners, at different times, will not describe the same disability in the same language. Features of the disability which must have persisted unchanged may be overlooked or a change for the better or worse may not be accurately appreciated or described. It is the responsibility of the rating specialist to interpret reports of examination in the light of the whole recorded history, reconciling the various reports into a consistent picture so that the current rating may accurately reflect the elements of disability present. Each disability must be considered from the point of view of the veteran working or seeking work. If a diagnosis is not supported by the findings on the examination report or if the report does not contain sufficient detail, it is incumbent upon the rating board to return the report as inadequate for evaluation purposes.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.3 Resolution of reasonable doubt.

It is the defined and consistently applied policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs to administer the law under a broad interpretation, consistent, however, with the facts shown in every case. When after careful consideration of all procurable and assembled data, a reasonable doubt arises regarding the degree of disability such doubt will be resolved in favor of the claimant. See §3.102 of this chapter.

[40 F R 42535, Sept. 15, 1975]

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§4.6 Evaluation of evidence.

The element of the weight to be accorded the character of the veteran’s service is but one factor entering into the considerations of the rating boards in arriving at determinations of the evaluation of disability. Every element in any way affecting the probative value to be assigned to the evidence in each individual claim must be thoroughly and conscientiously studied by each member of the rating board in the light of the established policies of the Department of Veterans Affairs to the end that decisions will be equitable and just as contemplated by the requirements of the law.

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§4.7 Higher of two evaluations.

Where there is a question as to which of two evaluations shall be applied, the higher evaluation will be assigned if the disability picture more nearly approximates the criteria required for that rating. Otherwise, the lower rating will be assigned.

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§4.9 Congenital or developmental defects.

Mere congenital or developmental defects, absent, displaced or supernumerary parts, refractive error of the eye, personality disorder and mental deficiency are not diseases or injuries in the meaning of applicable legislation for disability compensation purposes.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.10 Functional impairment.

The basis of disability evaluations is the ability of the body as a whole, or of the psyche, or of a system or organ of the body to function under the ordinary conditions of daily life including employment. Whether the upper or lower extremities, the back or abdominal wall, the eyes or ears, or the cardiovascular, digestive, or other system, or psyche are affected, evaluations are based upon lack of usefulness, of these parts or systems, especially in self-support. This imposes upon the medical examiner the responsibility of furnishing, in addition to the etiological, anatomical, pathological, laboratory and prognostic data required for ordinary medical classification, full description of the effects of disability upon the person’s ordinary activity. In this connection, it will be remembered that a person may be too disabled to engage in employment although he or she is up and about and fairly comfortable at home or upon limited activity.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.13 Effect of change of diagnosis.

The repercussion upon a current rating of service connection when change is made of a previously assigned diagnosis or etiology must be kept in mind. The aim should be the reconciliation and continuance of the diagnosis or etiology upon which service connection for the disability had been granted. The relevant principle enunciated in §4.125, entitled “Diagnosis of mental disorders,” should have careful attention in this connection. When any change in evaluation is to be made, the rating agency should assure itself that there has been an actual change in the conditions, for better or worse, and not merely a difference in thoroughness of the examination or in use of descriptive terms. This will not, of course, preclude the correction of erroneous ratings, nor will it preclude assignment of a rating in conformity with §4.7.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 61 FR 52700, Oct. 8, 1996]

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§4.14 Avoidance of pyramiding.

The evaluation of the same disability under various diagnoses is to be avoided. Disability from injuries to the muscles, nerves, and joints of an extremity may overlap to a great extent, so that special rules are included in the appropriate bodily system for their evaluation. Dyspnea, tachycardia, nervousness, fatigability, etc., may result from many causes; some may be service connected, others, not. Both the use of manifestations not resulting from service-connected disease or injury in establishing the service-connected evaluation and the evaluation of the same manifestation under different diagnoses are to be avoided.

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§4.15 Total disability ratings.

The ability to overcome the handicap of disability varies widely among individuals. The rating, however, is based primarily upon the average impairment in earning capacity, that is, upon the economic or industrial handicap which must be overcome and not from individual success in overcoming it. However, full consideration must be given to unusual physical or mental effects in individual cases, to peculiar effects of occupational activities, to defects in physical or mental endowment preventing the usual amount of success in overcoming the handicap of disability and to the effect of combinations of disability. Total disability will be considered to exist when there is present any impairment of mind or body which is sufficient to render it impossible for the average person to follow a substantially gainful occupation; Provided, That permanent total disability shall be taken to exist when the impairment is reasonably certain to continue throughout the life of the disabled person. The following will be considered to be permanent total disability: the permanent loss of the use of both hands, or of both feet, or of one hand and one foot, or of the sight of both eyes, or becoming permanently helpless or permanently bedridden. Other total disability ratings are scheduled in the various bodily systems of this schedule.

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§4.16 Total disability ratings for compensation based on unemployability of the individual.

(a) Total disability ratings for compensation may be assigned, where the schedular rating is less than total, when the disabled person is, in the judgment of the rating agency, unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation as a result of service-connected disabilities: Provided, That, if there is only one such disability, this disability shall be ratable at 60 percent or more, and that, if there are two or more disabilities, there shall be at least one disability ratable at 40 percent or more, and sufficient additional disability to bring the combined rating to 70 percent or more. For the above purpose of one 60 percent disability, or one 40 percent disability in combination, the following will be considered as one disability:

(1) Disabilities of one or both upper extremities, or of one or both lower extremities, including the bilateral factor, if applicable,

(2) Disabilities resulting from common etiology or a single accident,

(3) Disabilities affecting a single body system, e.g. orthopedic, digestive, respiratory, cardiovascular-renal, neuropsychiatric,

(4) Multiple injuries incurred in action, or

(5) Multiple disabilities incurred as a prisoner of war.

It is provided further that the existence or degree of nonservice-connected disabilities or previous unemployability status will be disregarded where the percentages referred to in this paragraph for the service-connected disability or disabilities are met and in the judgment of the rating agency such service-connected disabilities render the veteran unemployable. Marginal employment shall not be considered substantially gainful employment. For purposes of this section, marginal employment generally shall be deemed to exist when a veteran’s earned annual income does not exceed the amount established by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, as the poverty threshold for one person. Marginal employment may also be held to exist, on a facts found basis (includes but is not limited to employment in a protected environment such as a family business or sheltered workshop), when earned annual income exceeds the poverty threshold. Consideration shall be given in all claims to the nature of the employment and the reason for termination. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501(a))

(b) It is the established policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs that all veterans who are unable to secure and follow a substantially gainful occupation by reason of service-connected disabilities shall be rated totally disabled. Therefore, rating boards should submit to the Director, Compensation and Pension Service, for extra-schedular consideration all cases of veterans who are unemployable by reason of service-connected disabilities, but who fail to meet the percentage standards set forth in paragraph (a) of this section. The rating board will include a full statement as to the veteran’s service-connected disabilities, employment history, educational and vocational attainment and all other factors having a bearing on the issue.

[40 FR 42535, Sept. 15, 1975, as amended at 54 FR 4281, Jan. 30, 1989; 55 FR 31580, Aug. 3, 1990; 58 FR 39664, July 26, 1993; 61 FR 52700, Oct. 8, 1996]

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§4.17 Total disability ratings for pension based on unemployability and age of the individual.

All veterans who are basically eligible and who are unable to secure and follow a substantially gainful occupation by reason of disabilities which are likely to be permanent shall be rated as permanently and totally disabled. For the purpose of pension, the permanence of the percentage requirements of §4.16 is a requisite. When the percentage requirements are met, and the disabilities involved are of a permanent nature, a rating of permanent and total disability will be assigned if the veteran is found to be unable to secure and follow substantially gainful employment by reason of such disability. Prior employment or unemployment status is immaterial if in the judgment of the rating board the veteran’s disabilities render him or her unemployable. In making such determinations, the following guidelines will be used:

(a) Marginal employment, for example, as a self-employed farmer or other person, while employed in his or her own business, or at odd jobs or while employed at less than half the usual remuneration will not be considered incompatible with a determination of unemployability, if the restriction, as to securing or retaining better employment, is due to disability.

(b) Claims of all veterans who fail to meet the percentage standards but who meet the basic entitlement criteria and are unemployable, will be referred by the rating board to the Veterans Service Center Manager under §3.321(b)(2) of this chapter. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1502)

[43 FR 45348, Oct. 2, 1978; as amended at 56 FR 57985, Nov. 15, 1991; 71 FR 28586, May 17, 2006]

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§4.17a Misconduct etiology.

A permanent and total disability rating under the provisions of §§4.15, 4.16 and 4.17 will not be precluded by reason of the coexistence of misconduct disability when:

(a) A veteran, regardless of employment status, also has innocently acquired 100 percent disability, or

(b) Where unemployable, the veteran has other disabilities innocently acquired which meet the percentage requirements of §§4.16 and 4.17 and would render, in the judgment of the rating agency, the average person unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation.

[40 FR 42536, Sept. 15 1975, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978]

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§4.18 Unemployability.

A veteran may be considered as unemployable upon termination of employment which was provided on account of disability, or in which special consideration was given on account of the same, when it is satisfactorily shown that he or she is unable to secure further employment. With amputations, sequelae of fractures and other residuals of traumatism shown to be of static character, a showing of continuous unemployability from date of incurrence, or the date the condition reached the stabilized level, is a general requirement in order to establish the fact that present unemployability is the result of the disability. However, consideration is to be given to the circumstances of employment in individual claims, and, if the employment was only occasional, intermittent, tryout or unsuccessful, or eventually terminated on account of the disability, present unemployability may be attributed to the static disability. Where unemployability for pension previously has been established on the basis of combined service-connected and nonservice-connected disabilities and the service-connected disability or disabilities have increased in severity, §4.16 is for consideration.

[40 FR 42536, Sept. 15, 1975, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978]

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§4.19 Age in service-connected claims.

Age may not be considered as a factor in evaluating service-connected disability; and unemployability, in service-connected claims, associated with advancing age or intercurrent disability, may not be used as a basis for a total disability rating. Age, as such, is a factor only in evaluations of disability not resulting from service, i.e., for the purposes of pension.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978]

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§4.20 Analogous ratings.

When an unlisted condition is encountered it will be permissible to rate under a closely related disease or injury in which not only the functions affected, but the anatomical localization and symptomatology are closely analogous. Conjectural analogies will be avoided, as will the use of analogous ratings for conditions of doubtful diagnosis, or for those not fully supported by clinical and laboratory findings. Nor will ratings assigned to organic diseases and injuries be assigned by analogy to conditions of functional origin.

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§4.21 Application of rating schedule.

In view of the number of atypical instances it is not expected, especially with the more fully described grades of disabilities, that all cases will show all the findings specified. Findings sufficiently characteristic to identify the disease and the disability therefrom and above all, coordination of rating with impairment of function will, however, be expected in all instances.

[41 FR 11293, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.22 Rating of disabilities aggravated by active service. (EPTS)

In cases involving aggravation by active service, the rating will reflect only the degree of disability over and above the degree existing at the time of entrance into the active service whether the particular condition was noted at the time of entrance into the active service, or it is determined upon the evidence of record to have existed at that time. It is necessary therefore, in all cases of this character to deduct from the present degree of disability the degree, if ascertainable, of the disability existing at the time of entrance into active service, in terms of the rating schedule, except that if the disability is total (100 percent) no deduction will be made. The resulting difference will be recorded on the rating sheet. If the degree of disability at the time of entrance into the service is not ascertainable in terms of the schedule, no deduction will be made.

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§4.23 Attitude of rating officers.

It is to be remembered that the majority of applicants are disabled persons who are seeking benefits of law to which they believe themselves entitled. In the exercise of his or her functions, rating officers must not allow their personal feelings to intrude; an antagonistic, critical, or even abusive attitude on the part of a claimant should not in any instance influence the officers in the handling of the case. Fairness and courtesy must at all times be shown to applicants by all employees whose duties bring them in contact, directly or indirectly, with the Department’s claimants.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.24 Correspondence.

All correspondence relative to the interpretation of the schedule for rating disabilities, requests for advisory opinions, questions regarding lack of clarity or application to individual cases involving unusual difficulties, will be addressed to the Director, Compensation and Pension Service. A clear statement will be made of the point or points upon which information is desired and the complete case file will be simultaneously forwarded to Central Office. Rating agencies will assure themselves that the recent report of physical examination presents an adequate picture of the claimant’s condition. Claims in regard to which the schedule evaluations are considered inadequate or excessive, and errors in the schedule will be similarly brought to attention.

[41 FR 11292, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.25 Combined ratings table.

Table I, Combined Ratings Table, results from the consideration of the efficiency of the individual as affected first by the most disabling condition, then by the less disabling condition, then by other less disabling conditions, if any, in the order of severity. Thus, a person having a 60 percent disability is considered 40 percent efficient. Proceeding from this 40 percent efficiency, the effect of a further 30 percent disability is to leave only 70 percent of the efficiency remaining after consideration of the first disability, or 28 percent efficiency altogether. The individual is thus 72 percent disabled, as shown in table I opposite 60 percent and under 30 percent.

(a) To use Table I, the disabilities will first be arranged in the exact order of their severity, beginning with the greatest disability and then combined with use of table I as hereinafter indicated. For example, if there are two disabilities, the degree of one disability will be read in the left column and the degree of the other in the top row, whichever is appropriate. The figures appearing in the space where the column and row intersect will represent the combined value of the two. This combined value will then be converted to the nearest number divisible by 10, and combined values ending in 5 will be adjusted upward. Thus, with a 50 percent disability and a 30 percent disability, the combined value will be found to be 65 percent, but the 65 percent must be converted to 70 percent to represent the final degree of disability. Similarly, with a disability of 40 percent, and another disability of 20 percent, the combined value is found to be 52 percent, but the 52 percent must be converted to the nearest degree divisible by 10, which is 50 percent. If there are more than two disabilities, the disabilities will also be arranged in the exact order of their severity and the combined value for the first two will be found as previously described for two disabilities. The combined value, exactly as found in table I, will be combined with the degree of the third disability (in order of severity). The combined value for the three disabilities will be found in the space where the column and row intersect, and if there are only three disabilities will be converted to the nearest degree divisible by 10, adjusting final 5’s upward. Thus if there are three disabilities ratable at 60 percent, 40 percent, and 20 percent, respectively, the combined value for the first two will be found opposite 60 and under 40 and is 76 percent. This 76 will be combined with 20 and the combined value for the three is 81 percent. This combined value will be converted to the nearest degree divisible by 10 which is 80 percent. The same procedure will be employed when there are four or more disabilities. (See table I).

(b) Except as otherwise provided in this schedule, the disabilities arising from a single disease entity, e.g., arthritis, multiple sclerosis, cerebrovascular accident, etc., are to be rated separately as are all other disabling conditions, if any. All disabilities are then to be combined as described in paragraph (a) of this section. The conversion to the nearest degree divisible by 10 will be done only once per rating decision, will follow the combining of all disabilities, and will be the last procedure in determining the combined degree of disability. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

Table I—Combined Ratings Table

[10 combined with 10 is 19]

                      10            20          30           40           50           60          70            80            90

19................... 27.......... 35.......... 43.......... 51.......... 60.......... 68.......... 76.......... 84.......... 92
20................... 28.......... 36.......... 44.......... 52.......... 60.......... 68.......... 76.......... 84.......... 92
21................... 29.......... 37.......... 45.......... 53.......... 61.......... 68.......... 76.......... 84.......... 92
22................... 30.......... 38.......... 45.......... 53.......... 61.......... 69.......... 77.......... 84.......... 92
23................... 31.......... 38.......... 46.......... 54.......... 62.......... 69.......... 77.......... 85.......... 92
24................... 32.......... 39.......... 47.......... 54.......... 62.......... 70.......... 77.......... 85.......... 92
25................... 33.......... 40.......... 48.......... 55.......... 63.......... 70.......... 78.......... 85.......... 93
26................... 33.......... 41.......... 48.......... 56.......... 63.......... 70.......... 78.......... 85.......... 93
27................... 34.......... 42.......... 49.......... 56.......... 64.......... 71.......... 78.......... 85.......... 93
28................... 35.......... 42.......... 50.......... 57.......... 64.......... 71.......... 78.......... 86.......... 93
29................... 36.......... 43.......... 50.......... 57.......... 65.......... 72.......... 79.......... 86.......... 93
30................... 37.......... 44.......... 51.......... 58.......... 65.......... 72.......... 79.......... 86.......... 93
31................... 38.......... 45.......... 52.......... 59.......... 66.......... 72.......... 79.......... 86.......... 93
32................... 39.......... 46.......... 52.......... 59.......... 66.......... 73.......... 80.......... 86.......... 93
33................... 40.......... 46.......... 53.......... 60.......... 67.......... 73.......... 80.......... 87.......... 93
34................... 41.......... 47.......... 54.......... 60.......... 67.......... 74.......... 80.......... 87.......... 93
35................... 42.......... 48.......... 55.......... 61.......... 68.......... 74.......... 81.......... 87.......... 94
36................... 42.......... 49.......... 55.......... 62.......... 68.......... 74.......... 81.......... 87.......... 94
37................... 43.......... 50.......... 56.......... 62.......... 69.......... 75.......... 81.......... 87.......... 94
38................... 44.......... 50.......... 57.......... 63.......... 69.......... 75.......... 81.......... 88.......... 94
39................... 45.......... 51.......... 57.......... 63.......... 70.......... 76.......... 82.......... 88.......... 94
40................... 46.......... 52.......... 58.......... 64.......... 70.......... 76.......... 82.......... 88.......... 94
41................... 47.......... 53.......... 59.......... 65.......... 71.......... 76.......... 82.......... 88.......... 94
42................... 48.......... 54.......... 59.......... 65.......... 71.......... 77.......... 83.......... 88.......... 94
43................... 49.......... 54.......... 60.......... 66.......... 72.......... 77.......... 83.......... 89.......... 94
44................... 50.......... 55.......... 61.......... 66.......... 72.......... 78.......... 83.......... 89.......... 94
45................... 51.......... 56.......... 62.......... 67.......... 73.......... 78.......... 84.......... 89.......... 95
46................... 51.......... 57.......... 62.......... 68.......... 73.......... 78.......... 84.......... 89.......... 95
47................... 52.......... 58.......... 63.......... 68.......... 74.......... 79.......... 84.......... 89.......... 95
48................... 53.......... 58.......... 64.......... 69.......... 74.......... 79.......... 84.......... 90.......... 95
49................... 54.......... 59.......... 64.......... 69.......... 75.......... 80.......... 85.......... 90.......... 95
50................... 55.......... 60.......... 65.......... 70.......... 75.......... 80.......... 85.......... 90.......... 95
51................... 56.......... 61.......... 66.......... 71.......... 76.......... 80.......... 85.......... 90.......... 95
52................... 57.......... 62.......... 66.......... 71.......... 76.......... 81.......... 86.......... 90.......... 95
53................... 58.......... 62.......... 67.......... 72.......... 77.......... 81.......... 86.......... 91.......... 95
54................... 59.......... 63.......... 68.......... 72.......... 77.......... 82.......... 86.......... 91.......... 95
55................... 60.......... 64.......... 69.......... 73.......... 78.......... 82.......... 87.......... 91.......... 96
56................... 60.......... 65.......... 69.......... 74.......... 78.......... 82.......... 87.......... 91.......... 96
57................... 61.......... 66.......... 70.......... 74.......... 79.......... 83.......... 87.......... 91.......... 96
58................... 62.......... 66.......... 71.......... 75.......... 79.......... 83.......... 87.......... 92.......... 96
59................... 63.......... 67.......... 71.......... 75.......... 80.......... 84.......... 88.......... 92.......... 96
60................... 64.......... 68.......... 72.......... 76.......... 80.......... 84.......... 88.......... 92.......... 96
61................... 65.......... 69.......... 73.......... 77.......... 81.......... 84.......... 88.......... 92.......... 96
62................... 66.......... 70.......... 73.......... 77.......... 81.......... 85.......... 89.......... 92.......... 96
63................... 67.......... 70.......... 74.......... 78.......... 82.......... 85.......... 89.......... 93.......... 96
64................... 68.......... 71.......... 75.......... 78.......... 82.......... 86.......... 89.......... 93.......... 96
65................... 69.......... 72.......... 76.......... 79.......... 83.......... 86.......... 90.......... 93.......... 97
66................... 69.......... 73.......... 76.......... 80.......... 83.......... 86.......... 90.......... 93.......... 97
67................... 70.......... 74.......... 77.......... 80.......... 84.......... 87.......... 90.......... 93.......... 97
68................... 71.......... 74.......... 78.......... 81.......... 84.......... 87.......... 90.......... 94.......... 97
69................... 72.......... 75.......... 78.......... 81.......... 85.......... 88.......... 91.......... 94.......... 97
70................... 73.......... 76.......... 79.......... 82.......... 85.......... 88.......... 91.......... 94.......... 97
71................... 74.......... 77.......... 80.......... 83.......... 86.......... 88.......... 91.......... 94.......... 97
72................... 75.......... 78.......... 80.......... 83.......... 86.......... 89.......... 92.......... 94.......... 97
73................... 76.......... 78.......... 81.......... 84.......... 87.......... 89.......... 92.......... 95.......... 97
74................... 77.......... 79.......... 82.......... 84.......... 87.......... 90.......... 92.......... 95.......... 97
75................... 78.......... 80.......... 83.......... 85.......... 88.......... 90.......... 93.......... 95.......... 98
76................... 78.......... 81.......... 83.......... 86.......... 88.......... 90.......... 93.......... 95.......... 98
77................... 79.......... 82.......... 84.......... 86.......... 89.......... 91.......... 93.......... 95.......... 98
78................... 80.......... 82.......... 85.......... 87.......... 89.......... 91.......... 93.......... 96.......... 98
79................... 81.......... 83.......... 85.......... 87.......... 90.......... 92.......... 94.......... 96.......... 98
80................... 82.......... 84.......... 86.......... 88.......... 90.......... 92.......... 94.......... 96.......... 98
81................... 83.......... 85.......... 87.......... 89.......... 91.......... 92.......... 94.......... 96.......... 98
82................... 84.......... 86.......... 87.......... 89.......... 91.......... 93.......... 95.......... 96.......... 98
83................... 85.......... 86.......... 88.......... 90.......... 92.......... 93.......... 95.......... 97.......... 98
84................... 86.......... 87.......... 89.......... 90.......... 92.......... 94.......... 95.......... 97.......... 98
85................... 87.......... 88.......... 90.......... 91.......... 93.......... 94.......... 96.......... 97.......... 99
86................... 87.......... 89.......... 90.......... 92.......... 93.......... 94.......... 96.......... 97.......... 99
87................... 88.......... 90.......... 91.......... 92.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 97.......... 99
88................... 89.......... 90.......... 92.......... 93.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 98.......... 99
89................... 90.......... 91.......... 92.......... 93.......... 95.......... 96.......... 97.......... 98.......... 99
90................... 91.......... 92.......... 93.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 97.......... 98.......... 99
91................... 92.......... 93.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 96.......... 97.......... 98.......... 99
92................... 93.......... 94.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 97.......... 98.......... 98.......... 99
93................... 94.......... 94.......... 95.......... 96.......... 97.......... 97.......... 98.......... 99.......... 99
94................... 95.......... 95.......... 96.......... 96.......... 97.......... 98.......... 98.......... 99.......... 99

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)
[41 FR 11293, Mar. 18, 1976, as amended at 54 FR 27161, June 28, 1989; 54 FR 36029, Aug. 31, 1989]

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§4.26 Bilateral factor.

When a partial disability results from disease or injury of both arms, or of both legs, or of paired skeletal muscles, the ratings for the disabilities of the right and left sides will be combined as usual, and 10 percent of this value will be added (i.e., not combined) before proceeding with further combinations, or converting to degree of disability. The bilateral factor will be applied to such bilateral disabilities before other combinations are carried out and the rating for such disabilities including the bilateral factor in this section will be treated as 1 disability for the purpose of arranging in order of severity and for all further combinations. For example, with disabilities evaluated at 60 percent, 20 percent, 10 percent and 10 percent (the two 10’s representing bilateral disabilities), the order of severity would be 60, 21 and 20. The 60 and 21 combine to 68 percent and the 68 and 20 to 74 percent, converted to 70 percent as the final degree of disability.

(a) The use of the terms “arms” and “legs” is not intended to distinguish between the arm, forearm and hand, or the thigh, leg, and foot, but relates to the upper extremities and lower extremities as a whole. Thus with a compensable disability of the right thigh, for example, amputation, and one of the left foot, for example, pes planus, the bilateral factor applies, and similarly whenever there are compensable disabilities affecting use of paired extremities regardless of location or specified type of impairment.

(b) The correct procedure when applying the bilateral factor to disabilities affecting both upper extremities and both lower extremities is to combine the ratings of the disabilities affecting the 4 extremities in the order of their individual severity and apply the bilateral factor by adding, not combining, 10 percent of the combined value thus attained.

(c) The bilateral factor is not applicable unless there is partial disability of compensable degree in each of 2 paired extremities, or paired skeletal muscles.

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§4.27 Use of diagnostic code numbers.

The diagnostic code numbers appearing opposite the listed ratable disabilities are arbitrary numbers for the purpose of showing the basis of the evaluation assigned and for statistical analysis in the Department of Veterans Affairs, and as will be observed, extend from 5000 to a possible 9999. Great care will be exercised in the selection of the applicable code number and in its citation on the rating sheet. No other numbers than these listed or hereafter furnished are to be employed for rating purposes, with an exception as described in this section, as to unlisted conditions. When an unlisted disease, injury, or residual condition is encountered, requiring rating by analogy, the diagnostic code number will be “built-up” as follows: The first 2 digits will be selected from that part of the schedule most closely identifying the part, or system, of the body involved; the last 2 digits will be “99” for all unlisted conditions. This procedure will facilitate a close check of new and unlisted conditions, rated by analogy. In the selection of code numbers, injuries will generally be represented by the number assigned to the residual condition on the basis of which the rating is determined. With diseases, preference is to be given to the number assigned to the disease itself; if the rating is determined on the basis of residual conditions, the number appropriate to the residual condition will be added, preceded by a hyphen. Thus, rheumatoid (atrophic) arthritis rated as ankylosis of the lumbar spine should be coded “5002–5240.” In this way, the exact source of each rating can be easily identified. In the citation of disabilities on rating sheets, the diagnostic terminology will be that of the medical examiner, with no attempt to translate the terms into schedule nomenclature. Residuals of diseases or therapeutic procedures will not be cited without reference to the basic disease.

[41 FR 11293, Mar. 18, 1976, as amended at 70 FR 75399, Dec. 20, 2005]

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§4.28 Prestabilization rating from date of discharge from service.

The following ratings may be assigned, in lieu of ratings prescribed elsewhere, under the conditions stated for disability from any disease or injury. The prestabilization rating is not to be assigned in any case in which a total rating is immediately assignable under the regular provisions of the schedule or on the basis of individual unemployability. The prestabilization 50-percent rating is not to be used in any case in which a rating of 50-percent or more is immediately assignable under the regular provisions.

Unstabilized condition with severe disability:
Substantially gainful employment
is not feasible or advisable............................................................................... 100

Unhealed or incompletely healed wounds or injuries:
Material impairment of employability likely........................................................ 50

Note (1): Department of Veterans Affairs examination is not required prior to assignment of prestabilization ratings; however, the fact that examination was accomplished will not preclude assignment of these benefits. Prestabilization ratings are for assignment in the immediate postdischarge period. They will continue for a 12-month period following discharge from service. However, prestabilization ratings may be changed to a regular schedular total rating or one authorizing a greater benefit at any time. In each prestabilization rating an examination will be requested to be accomplished not earlier than 6 months nor more than 12 months following discharge. In those prestabilization ratings in which following examination reduction in evaluation is found to be warranted, the higher evaluation will be continued to the end of the 12th month following discharge or to the end of the period provided under §3.105(e) of this chapter, whichever is later. Special monthly compensation should be assigned concurrently in these cases whenever records are adequate to establish entitlement.

Note (2): Diagnosis of disease, injury, or residuals will be cited, with diagnostic code number assigned from this rating schedule for conditions listed therein.

[35 FR 11906, July 24, 1970]

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§4.29 Ratings for service-connected disabilities requiring hospital treatment or observation.

A total disability rating (100 percent) will be assigned without regard to other provisions of the rating schedule when it is established that a service-connected disability has required hospital treatment in a Department of Veterans Affairs or an approved hospital for a period in excess of 21 days or hospital observation at Department of Veterans Affairs expense for a service-connected disability for a period in excess of 21 days.

(a) Subject to the provisions of paragraphs (d), (e), and (f) of this section this increased rating will be effective the first day of continuous hospitalization and will be terminated effective the last day of the month of hospital discharge (regular discharge or release to non-bed care) or effective the last day of the month of termination of treatment or observation for the service-connected disability. A temporary release which is approved by an attending Department of Veterans Affairs physician as part of the treatment plan will not be considered an absence.

(1) An authorized absence in excess of 4 days which begins during the first 21 days of hospitalization will be regarded as the equivalent of hospital discharge effective the first day of such authorized absence. An authorized absence of 4 days or less which results in a total of more than 8 days of authorized absence during the first 21 days of hospitalization will be regarded as the equivalent of hospital discharge effective the ninth day of authorized absence.

(2) Following a period of hospitalization in excess of 21 days, an authorized absence in excess of 14 days or a third consecutive authorized absence of 14 days will be regarded as the equivalent of hospital discharge and will interrupt hospitalization effective on the last day of the month in which either the authorized absence in excess of 14 days or the third 14 day period begins, except where there is a finding that convalescence is required as provided by paragraph (e) or (f) of this section. The termination of these total ratings will not be subject to §3.105(e) of this chapter.

(b) Notwithstanding that hospital admission was for disability not connected with service, if during such hospitalization, hospital treatment for a service-connected disability is instituted and continued for a period in excess of 21 days, the increase to a total rating will be granted from the first day of such treatment. If service connection for the disability under treatment is granted after hospital admission, the rating will be from the first day of hospitalization if otherwise in order.

(c) The assignment of a total disability rating on the basis of hospital treatment or observation will not preclude the assignment of a total disability rating otherwise in order under other provisions of the rating schedule, and consideration will be given to the propriety of such a rating in all instances and to the propriety of its continuance after discharge. Particular attention, with a view to proper rating under the rating schedule, is to be given to the claims of veterans discharged from hospital, regardless of length of hospitalization, with indications on the final summary of expected confinement to bed or house, or to inability to work with requirement of frequent care of physician or nurse at home.

(d) On these total ratings Department of Veterans Affairs regulations governing effective dates for increased benefits will control.

(e) The total hospital rating if convalescence is required may be continued for periods of 1, 2, or 3 months in addition to the period provided in paragraph (a) of this section.

(f) Extension of periods of 1, 2, or 3 months beyond the initial 3 months may be made upon approval of the Veterans Service Center Manager.

(g) Meritorious claims of veterans who are discharged from the hospital with less than the required number of days but need post-hospital care and a prolonged period of convalescence will be referred to the Director, Compensation and Pension Service, under §3.321(b)(1) of this chapter.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 41 FR 11294, Mar. 18, 1976; 41 FR 34256, Aug. 13, 1976; 54 FR 4281, Jan. 30, 1989; 54 FR 34981, Aug. 23, 1989; 71 FR 28586, May 17, 2006]

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§4.30 Convalescent ratings.

A total disability rating (100 percent) will be assigned without regard to other provisions of the rating schedule when it is established by report at hospital discharge (regular discharge or release to non-bed care) or outpatient release that entitlement is warranted under paragraph (a)(1), (2), or (3) of this section effective the date of hospital admission or outpatient treatment and continuing for a period of 1, 2, or 3 months from the first day of the month following such hospital discharge or outpatient release. The termination of these total ratings will not be subject to §3.105(e) of this chapter. Such total rating will be followed by appropriate schedular evaluations. When the evidence is inadequate to assign a schedular evaluation, a physical examination will be scheduled and considered prior to the termination of a total rating under this section.

(a) Total ratings will be assigned under this section if treatment of a service-connected disability resulted in:

(1) Surgery necessitating at least one month of convalescence (Effective as to outpatient surgery March 1, 1989.)

(2) Surgery with severe postoperative residuals such as incompletely healed surgical wounds, stumps of recent amputations, therapeutic immobilization of one major joint or more, application of a body cast, or the necessity for house confinement, or the necessity for continued use of a wheelchair or crutches (regular weight-bearing prohibited). (Effective as to outpatient surgery March 1, 1989.)

(3) Immobilization by cast, without surgery, of one major joint or more. (Effective as to outpatient treatment March 10, 1976.)

A reduction in the total rating will not be subject to §3.105(e) of this chapter. The total rating will be followed by an open rating reflecting the appropriate schedular evaluation; where the evidence is inadequate to assign the schedular evaluation, a physical examination will be scheduled prior to the end of the total rating period.

(b) A total rating under this section will require full justification on the rating sheet and may be extended as follows:

(1) Extensions of 1, 2, or 3 months beyond the initial 3 months may be made under paragraph (a)(1), (2), or (3) of this section.

(2) Extensions of 1 or more months up to 6 months beyond the initial 6 months period may be made under paragraph (a)(2) or (3) of this section upon approval of the Veterans Service Center Manager.

[41 FR 34256, Aug. 13, 1976, as amended at 54 FR 4281, Jan. 30, 1989; 71 FR 28586, May 17, 2006]

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§4.31 A no-percent rating.

In every instance where the schedule does not provide a zero percent evaluation for a diagnostic code, a zero percent evaluation shall be assigned when the requirements for a compensable evaluation are not met.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 58 FR 52018, Oct. 6, 1993]

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Subpart B—Disability Ratings

The Musculoskeletal System

§4.40 Functional loss.

Disability of the musculoskeletal system is primarily the inability, due to damage or infection in parts of the system, to perform the normal working movements of the body with normal excursion, strength, speed, coordination and endurance. It is essential that the examination on which ratings are based adequately portray the anatomical damage, and the functional loss, with respect to all these elements. The functional loss may be due to absence of part, or all, of the necessary bones, joints and muscles, or associated structures, or to deformity, adhesions, defective innervation, or other pathology, or it may be due to pain, supported by adequate pathology and evidenced by the visible behavior of the claimant undertaking the motion. Weakness is as important as limitation of motion, and a part which becomes painful on use must be regarded as seriously disabled. A little used part of the musculoskeletal system may be expected to show evidence of disuse, either through atrophy, the condition of the skin, absence of normal callosity or the like.

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§4.41 History of injury.

In considering the residuals of injury, it is essential to trace the medical-industrial history of the disabled person from the original injury, considering the nature of the injury and the attendant circumstances, and the requirements for, and the effect of, treatment over past periods, and the course of the recovery to date. The duration of the initial, and any subsequent, period of total incapacity, especially periods reflecting delayed union, inflammation, swelling, drainage, or operative intervention, should be given close attention. This consideration, or the absence of clear cut evidence of injury, may result in classifying the disability as not of traumatic origin, either reflecting congenital or developmental etiology, or the effects of healed disease.

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§4.42 Complete medical examination of injury cases.

The importance of complete medical examination of injury cases at the time of first medical examination by the Department of Veterans Affairs cannot be overemphasized. When possible, this should include complete neurological and psychiatric examination, and other special examinations indicated by the physical condition, in addition to the required general and orthopedic or surgical examinations. When complete examinations are not conducted covering all systems of the body affected by disease or injury, it is impossible to visualize the nature and extent of the service connected disability. Incomplete examination is a common cause of incorrect diagnosis, especially in the neurological and psychiatric fields, and frequently leaves the Department of Veterans Affairs in doubt as to the presence or absence of disabling conditions at the time of the examination.

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§4.43 Osteomyelitis.

Chronic, or recurring, suppurative osteomyelitis, once clinically identified, including chronic inflammation of bone marrow, cortex, or periosteum, should be considered as a continuously disabling process, whether or not an actively discharging sinus or other obvious evidence of infection is manifest from time to time, and unless the focus is entirely removed by amputation will entitle to a permanent rating to be combined with other ratings for residual conditions, however, not exceeding amputation ratings at the site of election.

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§4.44 The bones.

The osseous abnormalities incident to trauma or disease, such as malunion with deformity throwing abnormal stress upon, and causing malalignment of joint surfaces, should be depicted from study and observation of all available data, beginning with inception of injury or disease, its nature, degree of prostration, treatment and duration of convalescence, and progress of recovery with development of permanent residuals. With shortening of a long bone, some degree of angulation is to be expected- the extent and direction should be brought out by X-ray and observation. The direction of angulation and extent of deformity should be carefully related to strain on the neighboring joints, especially those connected with weight-bearing.

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§4.45 The joints.

As regards the joints the factors of disability reside in reductions of their normal excursion of movements in different planes. Inquiry will be directed to these considerations:

(a) Less movement than normal (due to ankylosis, limitation or blocking, adhesions, tendon-tie-up, contracted scars, etc.).

(b) More movement than normal (from flail joint, resections, nonunion of fracture, relaxation of ligaments, etc.).

(c) Weakened movement (due to muscle injury, disease or injury of peripheral nerves, divided or lengthened tendons, etc.).

(d) Excess fatigability.

(e) Incoordination, impaired ability to execute skilled movements smoothly.

(f) Pain on movement, swelling, deformity or atrophy of disuse. Instability of station, disturbance of locomotion, interference with sitting, standing and weight-bearing are related considerations. For the purpose of rating disability from arthritis, the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, and ankle are considered major joints; multiple involvements of the interphalangeal, metacarpal and carpal joints of the upper extremities, the interphalangeal, metatarsal and tarsal joints of the lower extremities, the cervical vertebrae, the dorsal vertebrae, and the lumbar vertebrae, are considered groups of minor joints, ratable on a parity with major joints. The lumbosacral articulation and both sacroiliac joints are considered to be a group of minor joints, ratable on disturbance of lumbar spine functions.

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§4.46 Accurate measurement.

Accurate measurement of the length of stumps, excursion of joints, dimensions and location of scars with respect to landmarks, should be insisted on. The use of a goniometer in the measurement of limitation of motion is indispensable in examinations conducted within the Department of Veterans Affairs. Muscle atrophy must also be accurately measured and reported.

[41 FR 11294, Mar. 18, 1976]

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§4.55 Principles of combined ratings for muscle injuries.

(a) A muscle injury rating will not be combined with a peripheral nerve paralysis rating of the same body part, unless the injuries affect entirely different functions.

(b) For rating purposes, the skeletal muscles of the body are divided into 23 muscle groups in 5 anatomical regions: 6 muscle groups for the shoulder girdle and arm (diagnostic codes 5301 through 5306); 3 muscle groups for the forearm and hand (diagnostic codes 5307 through 5309); 3 muscle groups for the foot and leg (diagnostic codes 5310 through 5312); 6 muscle groups for the pelvic girdle and thigh (diagnostic codes 5313 through 5318); and 5 muscle groups for the torso and neck (diagnostic codes 5319 through 5323).

(c) There will be no rating assigned for muscle groups which act upon an ankylosed joint, with the following exceptions:

(1) In the case of an ankylosed knee, if muscle group XIII is disabled, it will be rated, but at the next lower level than that which would otherwise be assigned.

(2) In the case of an ankylosed shoulder, if muscle groups I and II are severely disabled, the evaluation of the shoulder joint under diagnostic code 5200 will be elevated to the level for unfavorable ankylosis, if not already assigned, but the muscle groups themselves will not be rated.

(d) The combined evaluation of muscle groups acting upon a single unankylosed joint must be lower than the evaluation for unfavorable ankylosis of that joint, except in the case of muscle groups I and II acting upon the shoulder.

(e) For compensable muscle group injuries which are in the same anatomical region but do not act on the same joint, the evaluation for the most severely injured muscle group will be increased by one level and used as the combined evaluation for the affected muscle groups.

(f) For muscle group injuries in different anatomical regions which do not act upon ankylosed joints, each muscle group injury shall be separately rated and the ratings combined under the provisions of §4.25. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978; 62 FR 30237, June 3, 1997]

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§4.56 Evaluation of muscle disabilities.

(a) An open comminuted fracture with muscle or tendon damage will be rated as a severe injury of the muscle group involved unless, for locations such as in the wrist or over the tibia, evidence establishes that the muscle damage is minimal.

(b) A through-and-through injury with muscle damage shall be evaluated as no less than a moderate injury for each group of muscles damaged.

(c) For VA rating purposes, the cardinal signs and symptoms of muscle disability are loss of power, weakness, lowered threshold of fatigue, fatigue-pain, impairment of coordination and uncertainty of movement.

(d) Under diagnostic codes 5301 through 5323, disabilities resulting from muscle injuries shall be classified as slight, moderate, moderately severe or severe as follows:

(1) Slight disability of muscles.

(i) Type of injury. Simple wound of muscle without debridement or infection.

(ii) History and complaint. Service department record of superficial wound with brief treatment and return to duty. Healing with good functional results. No cardinal signs or symptoms of muscle disability as defined in paragraph (c) of this section.

(iii) Objective findings. Minimal scar. No evidence of fascial defect, atrophy, or impaired tonus. No impairment of function or metallic fragments retained in muscle tissue.

(2) Moderate disability of muscles.

(i) Type of injury. Through and through or deep penetrating wound of short track from a single bullet, small shell or shrapnel fragment, without explosive effect of high velocity missile, residuals of debridement, or prolonged infection.

(ii) History and complaint. Service department record or other evidence of in-service treatment for the wound. Record of consistent complaint of one or more of the cardinal signs and symptoms of muscle disability as defined in paragraph (c) of this section, particularly lowered threshold of fatigue after average use, affecting the particular functions controlled by the injured muscles.

(iii) Objective findings. Entrance and (if present) exit scars, small or linear, indicating short track of missile through muscle tissue. Some loss of deep fascia or muscle substance or impairment of muscle tonus and loss of power or lowered threshold of fatigue when compared to the sound side.

(3) Moderately severe disability of muscles.

(i) Type of injury. Through and through or deep penetrating wound by small high velocity missile or large low-velocity missile, with debridement, prolonged infection, or sloughing of soft parts, and intermuscular scarring.

(ii) History and complaint. Service department record or other evidence showing hospitalization for a prolonged period for treatment of wound. Record of consistent complaint of cardinal signs and symptoms of muscle disability as defined in paragraph (c) of this section and, if present, evidence of inability to keep up with work requirements.

(iii) Objective findings. Entrance and (if present) exit scars indicating track of missile through one or more muscle groups. Indications on palpation of loss of deep fascia, muscle substance, or normal firm resistance of muscles compared with sound side. Tests of strength and endurance compared with sound side demonstrate positive evidence of impairment.

(4) Severe disability of muscles.

(i) Type of injury. Through and through or deep penetrating wound due to high-velocity missile, or large or multiple low velocity missiles, or with shattering bone fracture or open comminuted fracture with extensive debridement, prolonged infection, or sloughing of soft parts, intermuscular binding and scarring.

(ii) History and complaint. Service department record or other evidence showing hospitalization for a prolonged period for treatment of wound. Record of consistent complaint of cardinal signs and symptoms of muscle disability as defined in paragraph (c) of this section, worse than those shown for moderately severe muscle injuries, and, if present, evidence of inability to keep up with work requirements.

(iii) Objective findings. Ragged, depressed and adherent scars indicating wide damage to muscle groups in missile track. Palpation shows loss of deep fascia or muscle substance, or soft flabby muscles in wound area. Muscles swell and harden abnormally in contraction. Tests of strength, endurance, or coordinated movements compared with the corresponding muscles of the uninjured side indicate severe impairment of function. If present, the following are also signs of severe muscle disability:

(A) X-ray evidence of minute multiple scattered foreign bodies indicating intermuscular trauma and explosive effect of the missile.

(B) Adhesion of scar to one of the long bones, scapula, pelvic bones, sacrum or vertebrae, with epithelial sealing over the bone rather than true skin covering in an area where bone is normally protected by muscle.

(C) Diminished muscle excitability to pulsed electrical current in electrodiagnostic tests.

(D) Visible or measurable atrophy.

(E) Adaptive contraction of an opposing group of muscles.

(F) Atrophy of muscle groups not in the track of the missile, particularly of the trapezius and serratus in wounds of the shoulder girdle.

(G) Induration or atrophy of an entire muscle following simple piercing by a projectile. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978; 62 FR 30238, June 3, 1997]

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§4.57 Static foot deformities.

It is essential to make an initial distinction between bilateral flatfoot as a congenital or as an acquired condition. The congenital condition, with depression of the arch, but no evidence of abnormal callosities, areas of pressure, strain or demonstrable tenderness, is a congenital abnormality which is not compensable or pensionable. In the acquired condition, it is to be remembered that depression of the longitudinal arch, or the degree of depression, is not the essential feature. The attention should be given to anatomical changes, as compared to normal, in the relationship of the foot and leg, particularly to the inward rotation of the superior portion of the os calcis, medial deviation of the insertion of the Achilles tendon, the medial tilting of the upper border of the astragalus. This is an unfavorable mechanical relationship of the parts. A plumb line dropped from the middle of the patella falls inside of the normal point. The forepart of the foot is abducted, and the foot everted. The plantar surface of the foot is painful and shows demonstrable tenderness, and manipulation of the foot produces spasm of the Achilles tendon, peroneal spasm due to adhesion about the peroneal sheaths, and other evidence of pain and limited motion. The symptoms should be apparent without regard to exercise. In severe cases there is gaping of bones on the inner border of the foot, and rigid valgus position with loss of the power of inversion and adduction. Exercise with undeveloped or unbalanced musculature, producing chronic irritation, can be an aggravating factor. In the absence of trauma or other definite evidence of aggravation, service connection is not in order for pes cavus which is a typically congenital or juvenile disease.

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§4.58 Arthritis due to strain.

With service incurred lower extremity amputation or shortening, a disabling arthritis, developing in the same extremity, or in both lower extremities, with indications of earlier, or more severe, arthritis in the injured extremity, including also arthritis of the lumbosacral joints and lumbar spine, if associated with the leg amputation or shortening, will be considered as service incurred, provided, however, that arthritis affecting joints not directly subject to strain as a result of the service incurred amputation will not be granted service connection. This will generally require separate evaluation of the arthritis in the joints directly subject to strain. Amputation, or injury to an upper extremity, is not considered as a causative factor with subsequently developing arthritis, except in joints subject to direct strain or actually injured.

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§4.59 Painful motion.

With any form of arthritis, painful motion is an important factor of disability, the facial expression, wincing, etc., on pressure or manipulation, should be carefully noted and definitely related to affected joints. Muscle spasm will greatly assist the identification. Sciatic neuritis is not uncommonly caused by arthritis of the spine. The intent of the schedule is to recognize painful motion with joint or periarticular pathology as productive of disability. It is the intention to recognize actually painful, unstable, or malaligned joints, due to healed injury, as entitled to at least the minimum compensable rating for the joint. Crepitation either in the soft tissues such as the tendons or ligaments, or crepitation within the joint structures should be noted carefully as points of contact which are diseased. Flexion elicits such manifestations. The joints involved should be tested for pain on both active and passive motion, in weight-bearing and nonweight-bearing and, if possible, with the range of the opposite undamaged joint.

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§4.61 Examination.

With any form of arthritis (except traumatic arthritis) it is essential that the examination for rating purposes cover all major joints, with especial reference to Heberden’s or Haygarth’s nodes.

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§4.62 Circulatory disturbances.

The circulatory disturbances, especially of the lower extremity following injury in the popliteal space, must not be overlooked, and require rating generally as phlebitis.

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§4.63 Loss of use of hand or foot.

Loss of use of a hand or a foot, for the purpose of special monthly compensation, will be held to exist when no effective function remains other than that which would be equally well served by an amputation stump at the site of election below elbow or knee with use of a suitable prosthetic appliance. The determination will be made on the basis of the actual remaining function of the hand or foot, whether the acts of grasping, manipulation, etc., in the case of the hand, or of balance and propulsion, etc., in the case of the foot, could be accomplished equally well by an amputation stump with prosthesis.

(a) Extremely unfavorable complete ankylosis of the knee, or complete ankylosis of 2 major joints of an extremity, or shortening of the lower extremity of 3-1/2 inches (8.9 cms.) or more, will be taken as loss of use of the hand or foot involved.

(b) Complete paralysis of the external popliteal nerve (common peroneal) and consequent, footdrop, accompanied by characteristic organic changes including trophic and circulatory disturbances and other concomitants confirmatory of complete paralysis of this nerve, will be taken as loss of use of the foot.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978]

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§4.64 Loss of use of both buttocks.

Loss of use of both buttocks shall be deemed to exist when there is severe damage to muscle Group XVII, bilateral (diagnostic code number 5317) and additional disability rendering it impossible for the disabled person, without assistance, to rise from a seated position and from a stooped position (fingers to toes position) and to maintain postural stability (the pelvis upon head of femur). The assistance may be rendered by the person’s own hands or arms, and, in the matter of postural stability, by a special appliance.

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§4.66 Sacroiliac joint.

The common cause of disability in this region is arthritis, to be identified in the usual manner. The lumbosacral and sacroiliac joints should be considered as one anatomical segment for rating purposes. X-ray changes from arthritis in this location are decrease or obliteration of the joint space, with the appearance of increased bone density of the sacrum and ilium and sharpening of the margins of the joint. Disability is manifest from erector spinae spasm (not accounted for by other pathology), tenderness on deep palpation and percussion over these joints, loss of normal quickness of motion and resiliency, and postural defects often accompanied by limitation of flexion and extension of the hip. Traumatism is a rare cause of disability in this connection, except when superimposed upon congenital defect or upon an existent arthritis; to permit assumption of pure traumatic origin, objective evidence of damage to the joint, and history of trauma sufficiently severe to injure this extremely strong and practically immovable joint is required. There should be careful consideration of lumbosacral sprain, and the various symptoms of pain and paralysis attributable to disease affecting the lumbar vertebrae and the intervertebral disc.

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§4.67 Pelvic bones.

The variability of residuals following these fractures necessitates rating on specific residuals, faulty posture, limitation of motion, muscle injury, painful motion of the lumbar spine, manifest by muscle spasm, mild to moderate sciatic neuritis, peripheral nerve injury, or limitation of hip motion.

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§4.68 Amputation rule.

The combined rating for disabilities of an extremity shall not exceed the rating for the amputation at the elective level, were amputation to be performed. For example, the combined evaluations for disabilities below the knee shall not exceed the 40 percent evaluation, diagnostic code 5165. This 40 percent rating may be further combined with evaluation for disabilities above the knee but not to exceed the above the knee amputation elective level. Painful neuroma of a stump after amputation shall be assigned the evaluation for the elective site of reamputation.

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§4.69 Dominant hand.

Handedness for the purpose of a dominant rating will be determined by the evidence of record, or by testing on VA examination. Only one hand shall be considered dominant. The injured hand, or the most severely injured hand, of an ambidextrous individual will be considered the dominant hand for rating purposes. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 62 FR 30239, June 3, 1997]

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§4.70 Inadequate examinations.

If the report of examination is inadequate as a basis for the required consideration of service connection and evaluation, the rating agency may request a supplementary report from the examiner giving further details as to the limitations of the disabled person’s ordinary activity imposed by the disease, injury, or residual condition, the prognosis for return to, or continuance of, useful work. When the best interests of the service will be advanced by personal conference with the examiner, such conference may be arranged through channels.

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§4.71 Measurement of ankylosis and joint motion.

Plates I and II provide a standardized description of ankylosis and joint motion measurement. The anatomical position is considered as 0º, with two major exceptions:

(a) Shoulder rotation—arm abducted to 90º, elbow flexed to 90º with the position of the forearm reflecting the midpoint 0º between internal and external rotation of the shoulder; and

(b) Supination and pronation—the arm next to the body, elbow flexed to 90º, and the forearm in midposition 0º between supination and pronation.

Motion of the thumb and fingers should be described by appropriate reference to the joints (See Plate III) whose movement is limited, with a statement as to how near, in centimeters, the tip of the thumb can approximate the fingers, or how near the tops of the fingers can approximate the proximal transverse crease of palm.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45349, Oct. 2, 1978; 67 FR 48785, July 26, 2002]

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§4.71a Schedule of ratings—musculoskeletal system.

Acute, Subacute, or Chronic Diseases

Rating

5000 Osteomyelitis, acute, subacute, or chronic:

Of the pelvis, vertebrae, or extending into major joints,
or with multiple localization or with long history of
intractability and debility, anemia, amyloid liver
changes, or other continuous constitutional symptoms.......................................... 100

Frequent episodes, with constitutional symptoms................................................... 60

With definite involucrum or sequestrum, with or without
discharging sinus................................................................................................. 30

With discharging sinus or other evidence of active infection
within the past 5 years......................................................................................... 20

Inactive, following repeated episodes, without evidence of
active infection in past 5 years.............................................................................. 10

Note (1): A rating of 10 percent, as an exception to the amputation rule, is to be assigned in any case of active osteomyelitis where the amputation rating for the affected part is no percent. This 10 percent rating and the other partial ratings of 30 percent or less are to be combined with ratings for ankylosis, limited motion, nonunion or malunion, shortening, etc., subject, of course, to the amputation rule. The 60 percent rating, as it is based on constitutional symptoms, is not subject to the amputation rule. A rating for osteomyelitis will not be applied following cure by removal or radical resection of the affected bone.

Note (2): The 20 percent rating on the basis of activity within the past 5 years is not assignable following the initial infection of active osteomyelitis with no subsequent reactivation. The prerequisite for this historical rating is an established recurrent osteomyelitis. To qualify for the 10 percent rating, 2 or more episodes following the initial infection are required. This 20 percent rating or the 10 percent rating, when applicable, will be assigned once only to cover disability at all sites of previously active infection with a future ending date in the case of the 20 percent rating.

5001 Bones and joints, tuberculosis of, active or inactive:

Active............................................................................................................ 100

Inactive: See §§ 4.88c and 4.89

5002 Arthritis rheumatoid (atrophic) as an active process

With constitutional manifestations associated with
active joint involvement, totally incapacitating.................................................... 100

Less than criteria for 100% but with weight loss and anemia
productive of severe impairment of health or severely
incapacitating exacerbations occurring 4 or more times a
year or a lesser number over prolonged periods.................................................... 60

Symptom combinations productive of definite impairment of
health objectively supported by examination findings or
incapacitating exacerbations occurring 3 or more times a year................................ 40

One or two exacerbations a year in a well-established diagnosis............................. 20
For chronic residuals:

For residuals such as limitation of motion or ankylosis, favorable or unfavorable, rate under the appropriate diagnostic codes for the specific joints involved. Where, however, the limitation of motion of the specific joint or joints involved is noncompensable under the codes a rating of 10 percent is for application for each such major joint or group of minor joints affected by limitation of motion, to be combined, not added under diagnostic code 5002. Limitation of motion must be objectively confirmed by findings such as swelling, muscle spasm, or satisfactory evidence of painful motion.

Note: The ratings for the active process will not be combined with the residual ratings for limitation of motion or ankylosis. Assign the higher evaluation.

5003 Arthritis, degenerative (hypertrophic or osteoarthritis):

Degenerative arthritis established by X-ray findings will be rated on the basis of limitation of motion under the appropriate diagnostic codes for the specific joint or joints involved (DC 5200 etc.). When however, the limitation of motion of the specific joint or joints involved is noncompensable under the appropriate diagnostic codes, a rating of 10 pct is for application for each such major joint or group of minor joints affected by limitation of motion, to be combined, not added under diagnostic code 5003. Limitation of motion must be objectively confirmed by findings such as swelling, muscle spasm, or satisfactory evidence of painful motion. In the absence of limitation of motion, rate as below:

With X-ray evidence of involvement of 2 or more major
joints or 2 or more minor joint groups, with occasional
incapacitating exacerbations................................................................................ 20

With X-ray evidence of involvement of 2 or more major
joints or 2 or more minor joint groups................................................................. 10

Note (1): The 20 pct and 10 pct ratings based on X-ray findings, above, will not be combined with ratings based on limitation of motion.

Note (2): The 20 pct and 10 pct ratings based on X-ray findings, above, will not be utilized in rating conditions listed under diagnostic code 5013 to 5024, inclusive.

5004 Arthritis, gonorrheal.

5005 Arthritis, pneumococcic.

5006 Arthritis, typhoid.

5007 Arthritis, syphilitic.

5008 Arthritis, streptococcic.

5009 Arthritis, other types (specify).

With the types of arthritis, diagnostic codes 5004 through 5009, rate the disability as rheumatoid arthritis.

5010 Arthritis, due to trauma, substantiated by X-ray findings:

Rate as arthritis, degenerative.

5011 Bones, caisson disease of:

Rate as arthritis, cord involvement, or deafness, depending on the severity of disabling manifestations.

5012 Bones, new growths of, malignant............................................................................... 100

Note: The 100 percent rating will be continued for 1 year following the cessation of surgical, X-ray, antineoplastic chemotherapy or other therapeutic procedure. At this point, if there has been no local recurrence or metastases, the rating will be made on residuals.

The diseases under diagnostic codes 5013 through 5024 will be rated on limitation of motion of affected parts, as arthritis, degenerative, except gout which will be rated under diagnostic code 5002.

5013 Osteoporosis, with joint manifestations.

5014 Osteomalacia.

5015 Bones, new growths of, benign.

5016 Osteitis deformans. (Paget's disease)

5017 Gout.

5018 Hydrarthrosis, intermittent.

5019 Bursitis.

5020 Synovitis.

5021 Myositis.

5022 Periostitis.

5023 Myositis ossificans.

5024 Tenosynovitis.

5025 Fibromyalgia (fibrositis, primary fibromyalgia syndrome)

With widespread musculoskeletal pain and tender points, with or without associated fatigue, sleep disturbance, stiffness, paresthesias, headache, irritable bowel symptoms, depression, anxiety, or Raynaud’s-like symptoms:

That are constant, or nearly so, and refractory to therapy.................................... 40

That are episodic, with exacerbations often precipitated
by environmental or emotional stress or by overexertion,
but that are present more than one-third of the time............................................. 20

That require continuous medication for control.................................................... 10

Note: Widespread pain means pain in both the left and right sides of the body, that is both above and below the waist, and that affects both the axial skeleton (i.e., cervical spine, anterior chest, thoracic spine, or low back) and the extremities.

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Prosthetic Implants

                                                                                                                   Rating

                                                                                                            Major   Minor

5051 Shoulder replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of the shoulder joint:

For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ................................... 100..... 100

With chronic residuals consisting of severe, painful motion
or weakness in the affected extremity................................................... 60....... 50

With intermediate degrees of residual weakness, pain or
limitation of motion, rate by analogy to diagnostic codes
5200 and 5203.

Minimum rating................................................................................... 30....... 20

5052 Elbow replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of the elbow joint:

For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ...................................... 100..... 100

With chronic residuals consisting of severe painful motion
or weakness in the affected extremity...................................................... 50....... 40

With intermediate degrees of residual weakness, pain or
limitation of motion rate by analogy to diagnostic codes 5205
through 5208.

Minimum evaluation............................................................................... 30....... 20

5053 Wrist replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of wrist joint:

For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ........................................ 100..... 100

With chronic residuals consisting of severe, painful motion
or weakness in the affected extremity........................................................ 40....... 30

With intermediate degrees of residual weakness, pain or limitation
of motion, rate by analogy to diagnostic code 5214.

Minimum rating........................................................................................ 20....... 20

Note: The 100 pct rating for 1 year following implantation of prosthesis will commence after initial grant of the 1-month total rating assigned under §4.30 following hospital discharge.

5054 Hip replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of the head of the femur or
of the acetabulum:

For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ............................................... 100

Following implantation of prosthesis with painful motion
or weakness such as to require the use of crutches .......................................... 901

Markedly severe residual weakness, pain or limitation
of motion following implantation of prosthesis.................................................. 70

Moderately severe residuals of weakness, pain or limitation of motion ............... 50

Minimum rating............................................................................................. 30

5055 Knee replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of knee joint:
For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ............................................... 100

With chronic residuals consisting of severe painful
motion or weakness in the affected extremity.................................................... 60

With intermediate degrees of residual weakness, pain
or limitation of motion rate by analogy to diagnostic
codes 5256, 5261, or 5262. Minimum rating..................................................... 30

5056 Ankle replacement (prosthesis).

Prosthetic replacement of ankle joint:

For 1 year following implantation of prosthesis ................................................. 100

With chronic residuals consisting of severe painful
motion or weakness......................................................................................... 40

With intermediate degrees of residual weakness, pain or
limitation of motion rate by analogy to 5270 or 5271.

Minimum rating................................................................................................ 20

Note (1): The 100 pct rating for 1 year following implantation of prosthesis will commence after initial grant of the 1-month total rating assigned under § 4.30 following hospital discharge.

Note (2): Special monthly compensation is assignable during the 100 pct rating period the earliest date permanent use of crutches is established.

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Combinations of Disabilities

5104 Anatomical loss of one hand and loss of use of one foot................................................. 1001

5105 Anatomical loss of one foot and loss of use of one hand ................................................ 1001

5106 Anatomical loss of both hands...................................................................................... 1001

5107 Anatomical loss of both feet......................................................................................... 1001

5108 Anatomical loss of one hand and one foot ..................................................................... 1001

5109 Loss of use of both hands............................................................................................. 1001

5110 Loss of use of both feet ............................................................................................... 1001

5111 Loss of use of one hand and one foot............................................................................. 1001

1Also entitled to special monthly compensation.

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Amputations: Upper Extremity

                                                                                                                                     Rating

                                                                                                                               Major      Minor

Arm, amputation of:

5120 Disarticulation ............................................................................................. 901........ 901

5121 Above insertion of deltoid.............................................................................. 901 ........ 801

5122 Below insertion of deltoid ............................................................................. 801........ 701

Forearm, amputation of:

5123 Above insertion of pronator teres.................................................................... 801........ 701

5124 Below insertion of pronator teres.................................................................... 701........ 601

5125 Hand, loss of use of....................................................................................... 701........ 601

Multiple finger amputations:

5126 Five digits of one hand, amputation ........................................................... .... 701........ 601

Four digits of one hand, amputation of:

5127 Thumb, index, long and ring.......................................................................... 701........ 601

5128 Thumb, index, long and little.......................................................................... 701........ 601

5129 Thumb, index, ring and little.......................................................................... 701........ 601

5130 Thumb, long, ring and little............................................................................ 701........ 601

5131 Index, long, ring and little............................................................................... 60.......... 50

Three digits of one hand, amputation of:

5132 Thumb, index and long.................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5133 Thumb, index and ring..................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5134 Thumb, index and little.................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5135 Thumb, long and ring...................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5136 Thumb, long and little...................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5137 Thumb, ring and little....................................................................................... 60.......... 50

5138 Index, long and ring......................................................................................... 50.......... 40

5139 Index, long and little......................................................................................... 50.......... 40

5140 Index, ring and little......................................................................................... 50.......... 40

5141 Long, ring and little.......................................................................................... 40.......... 30

Two digits of one hand, amputation of:

5142 Thumb and index............................................................................................. 50.......... 40

5143 Thumb and long............................................................................................... 50.......... 40

5144 Thumb and ring................................................................................................ 50.......... 40

5145 Thumb and little............................................................................................... 50.......... 40

5146 Index and long................................................................................................. 40.......... 30

5147 Index and ring ................................................................................................. 40.......... 30

5148 Index and little................................................................................................. 40.......... 30

5149 Long and ring................................................................................................... 30.......... 20

5150 Long and little.................................................................................................. 30.......... 20

5151 Ring and little................................................................................................... 30.......... 20

(a) The ratings for multiple finger amputations apply to amputations at the proximal interphalangeal joints or through proximal phalanges.

(b) Amputation through long phalanges will be rated as prescribed for unfavorable ankylosis of the fingers.

(c) Amputations at distal joints, or through distal phalanges, other than negligible losses, will be rated as prescribed for favorable ankylosis of the fingers.

(d) Amputation or resection of metacarpal bones (more than one-half the bone lost) in multiple fingers injuries will require a rating of 10 percent added to (not combined with) the ratings, multiple finger amputations, subject to the amputation rule applied to the forearm.

(e) Combinations of finger amputations at various levels, or finger amputations with ankylosis or limitation of motion of the fingers will be rated on the basis of the grade of disability; i.e., amputation, unfavorable ankylosis, most representative of the levels or combinations. With an even number of fingers involved, and adjacent grades of disability, select the higher of the two grades.

(f) Loss of use of the hand will be held to exist when no effective function remains other than that which would be equally well served by an amputation stump with a suitable prosthetic appliance.

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Single finger amputations:

5152 Thumb, amputation of:

With metacarpal resection................................................................ 40.......... 30

At metacarpophalangeal joint or through
proximal phalanx............................................................................. 30.......... 20

At distal joint or through distal phalanx.............................................. 20.......... 20

5153 Index finger, amputation of

With metacarpal resection (more than one-half
the bone lost).................................................................................. 30.......... 20

Without metacarpal resection, at proximal
interphalangeal joint or proximal thereto............................................ 20.......... 20

Through long phalanx or at distal joint............................................... 10.......... 10

5154 Long finger, amputation of:

With metacarpal resection (more than one-half the bone lost)............... 20.......... 20

Without metacarpal resection, at proximal
interphalangeal joint or proximal thereto............................................. 10.......... 10

5155 Ring finger, amputation of:

With metacarpal resection (more than one-half
the bone lost).................................................................................. 20.......... 20

Without metacarpal resection, at proximal
interphalangeal joint or proximal thereto............................................. 10.......... 10

5156 Little finger, amputation of:

With metacarpal resection (more than one-half
the bone lost).................................................................................... 20.......... 20

Without metacarpal resection, at proximal
interphalangeal joint or proximal thereto............................................... 10.......... 10

Note: The single finger amputation ratings are the only applicable ratings for amputations of whole or part of single fingers.

1 Entitled to special monthly compensation.

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Amputations: Lower Extremity

Thigh, amputation of:

5160 Disarticulation, with loss of extrinsic pelvic girdle muscles......................................... 902

5161 Upper third, one-third of the distance from perineum to knee joint
measured from perineum................................................................................................ 802

5162 Middle or lower thirds............................................................................................ 602

Leg, amputation of:

5163 With defective stump, thigh, amputation recommended.............................................. 602

5164 Amputation not improvable by prosthesis controlled by
natural knee action.......................................................................................................... 602

5165 At a lower level, permitting prosthesis....................................................................... 402

Foot, amputation of:

5166 Forefoot, amputation proximal to metatarsal bones (more than
one-half of metatarsal loss).............................................................................................. 402

5167 Foot, loss of use of................................................................................................. 402

5170 Toes, all, amputation of, without metatarsal loss......................................................... 30

5171 Toe, great, amputation of:

With removal of metatarsal head................................................................................ 30
Without metatarsal involvement................................................................................. 10

5172 Toes, other than great, amputation of, with removal of metatarsal head:

One or two............................................................................................................... 20
Without metatarsal involvement................................................................................... 0

5173 Toes, three or four, amputation of, without metatarsal involvement:

Including great toe..................................................................................................... 20
Not including great toe............................................................................................... 10

2Also entitled to special monthly compensation.

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The Shoulder and Arm

                                                                                                                        Rating
                                                                                                                   Major      Minor

5200 Scapulohumeral articulation, ankylosis of:

Note: The scapula and humerus move as one piece.

Unfavorable, abduction limited to 25º from side.......................................... 50.......... 40
Intermediate between favorable and unfavorable......................................... 40.......... 30
Favorable, abduction to 60°, can reach mouth and head............................... 30.......... 20

5201 Arm, limitation of motion of:

To 25° from side........................................................................................ 40.......... 30
Midway between side and shoulder level...................................................... 30.......... 20
At shoulder level........................................................................................ 20.......... 20

5202 Humerus, other impairment of:

Loss of head of (flail shoulder)..................................................................... 80.......... 70
Nonunion of (false flail joint)........................................................................ 60.......... 50
Fibrous union of.......................................................................................... 50.......... 40

Recurrent dislocation of at scapulohumeral joint.

With frequent episodes and guarding of
all arm movements................................................................................ 30.......... 20
With infrequent episodes, and guarding of
movement only at shoulder level............................................................ 20.......... 20

Malunion of:

Marked deformity................................................................................. 30.......... 20
Moderate deformity............................................................................... 20.......... 20

5203 Clavicle or scapula, impairment of:

Dislocation of.............................................................................................. 20.......... 20
Nonunion of:

With loose movement............................................................................. 20.......... 20
Without loose movement........................................................................ 10.......... 10

Malunion of................................................................................................ 10.......... 10
Or rate on impairment of function of contiguous joint.

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The Elbow and Forearm

                                                                                                                         Rating
                                                                                                                 Major      Minor
5205 Elbow, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable, at an angle of less than 50° or with
complete loss of supination or pronation................................................... 60.......... 50
Intermediate, at an angle of more than 90°, or
between 70° and 50°.............................................................................. 50.......... 40
Favorable, at an angle between 90° and 70°.............................................. 40.......... 30

5206 Forearm, limitation of flexion of:

Flexion limited to 45°................................................................................ 50.......... 40
Flexion limited to 55°................................................................................ 40.......... 30
Flexion limited to 70°................................................................................ 30.......... 20
Flexion limited to 90°................................................................................ 20.......... 20
Flexion limited to 100° .............................................................................. 10.......... 10
Flexion limited to 110°................................................................................ 0............ 0

5207 Forearm, limitation of extension of:

Extension limited to 110°.......................................................................... 50.......... 40
Extension limited to 100°.......................................................................... 40.......... 30
Extension limited to 90°............................................................................ 30.......... 20
Extension limited to 75°............................................................................ 20.......... 20
Extension limited to 60°............................................................................ 10.......... 10
Extension limited to 45°............................................................................ 10.......... 10

5208 Forearm, flexion limited to 100° and extension to 45°................................ 20......... 20

5209 Elbow, other impairment of:

Flail joint.................................................................................................. 60......... 50
Joint fracture, with marked cubitus varus or cubitus valgus
deformity or with ununited fracture of head of radius................................... 20......... 20

5210 Radius and ulna, nonunion of, with flail false joint..................................... 50......... 40

5211 Ulna, impairment of:

Nonunion in upper half, with false movement:

With loss of bone substance (1 inch (2 5 cms.) or more)
and marked deformity........................................................................ 40.......... 30
Without loss of bone substance or deformity........................................ 30......... 20

Nonunion in lower half............................................................................. 20......... 20

Malunion of, with bad alignment............................................................... 10......... 10

5212 Radius, impairment of:

Nonunion in lower half, with false movement:

With loss of bone substance (1 inch (2.5 cms.) or more)
and marked deformity.................................................................... 40.......... 30
Without loss of bone substance or deformity.................................... 30.......... 20

Nonunion in upper half......................................................................... 20......... 20

Malunion of, with bad alignment........................................................... 10 ......... 10

5213 Supination and pronation, impairment of:

Loss of (bone fusion):

The hand fixed in supination or hyperpronation................................ 40......... 30
The hand fixed in full pronation...................................................... 30 ......... 20
The hand fixed near the middle of the arc or
moderate pronation........................................................................ 20 ......... 20

Limitation of pronation:

Motion lost beyond middle of arc................................................... 30 ......... 20
Motion lost beyond last quarter of arc, the hand
does not approach full pronation..................................................... 20......... 20

Limitation of supination:

To 30º or less................................................................................ 10......... 10

Note: In all the forearm and wrist injuries, codes 5205 through 5213, multiple impaired finger movements due to tendon tie-up, muscle or nerve injury, are to be separately rated and combined not to exceed rating for loss of use of hand.

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The Wrist

                                                                                                                   Rating
                                                                                                             Major         Minor
5214 Wrist, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable, in any degree of palmar flexion, or with
ulnar or radial deviation.......................................................................... 50......... 40
Any other position, except favorable........................................................ 40......... 30
Favorable in 20º to 30º dorsiflexion.......................................................... 30......... 20

Note: Extremely unfavorable ankylosis will be rated as loss of use of hands under diagnostic code 5125.

5215 Wrist, limitation of motion of:

Dorsiflexion less than 15º........................................................................ 10.......... 10
Palmar flexion limited in line with forearm................................................ 10.......... 10

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Evaluation of Ankylosis or Limitation of Motion of Single or Multiple Digits of the Hand

(1) For the index, long, ring, and little fingers (digits II, III, IV, and V), zero degrees of flexion represents the fingers fully extended, making a straight line with the rest of the hand. The position of function of the hand is with the wrist dorsiflexed 20 to 30 degrees, the metacarpophalangeal and proximal interphalangeal joints flexed to 30 degrees, and the thumb (digit I) abducted and rotated so that the thumb pad faces the finger pads. Only joints in these positions are considered to be in favorable position. For digits II through V, the metacarpophalangeal joint has a range of zero to 90 degrees of flexion, the proximal interphalangeal joint has a range of zero to 100 degrees of flexion, and the distal (terminal) interphalangeal joint has a range of zero to 70 or 80 degrees of flexion.

(2) When two or more digits of the same hand are affected by any combination of amputation, ankylosis, or limitation of motion that is not otherwise specified in the rating schedule, the evaluation level assigned will be that which best represents the overall disability (i.e., amputation, unfavorable or favorable ankylosis, or limitation of motion), assigning the higher level of evaluation when the level of disability is equally balanced between one level and the next higher level.

(3) Evaluation of ankylosis of the index, long, ring, and little fingers:

(i) If both the metacarpophalangeal and proximal interphalangeal joints of a digit are ankylosed, and either is in extension or full flexion, or there is rotation or angulation of a bone, evaluate as amputation without metacarpal resection, at proximal interphalangeal joint or proximal thereto.

(ii) If both the metacarpophalangeal and proximal interphalangeal joints of a digit are ankylosed, evaluate as unfavorable ankylosis, even if each joint is individually fixed in a favorable position.

(iii) If only the metacarpophalangeal or proximal interphalangeal joint is ankylosed, and there is a gap of more than two inches (5.1 cm.) between the fingertip(s) and the proximal transverse crease of the palm, with the finger(s) flexed to the extent possible, evaluate as unfavorable ankylosis

(iv) If only the metacarpophalangeal or proximal interphalangeal joint is ankylosed, and there is a gap of two inches (5.1 cm.) or less between the fingertip(s) and the proximal transverse crease of the palm, with the finger(s) flexed to the extent possible, evaluate as favorable ankylosis.

(4) Evaluation of ankylosis of the thumb:

(i) If both the carpometacarpal and interphalangeal joints are ankylosed, and either is in extension or full flexion, or there is rotation or angulation of a bone, evaluate as amputation at metacarpophalangeal joint or through proximal phalanx.

(ii) If both the carpometacarpal and interphalangeal joints are ankylosed, evaluate as unfavorable ankylosis, even if each joint is individually fixed in a favorable position.

(iii) If only the carpometacarpal or interphalangeal joint is ankylosed, and there is a gap of more than two inches (5.1 cm.) between the thumb pad and the fingers, with the thumb attempting to oppose the fingers, evaluate as unfavorable ankylosis.

(iv) If only the carpometacarpal or interphalangeal joint is ankylosed, and there is a gap of two inches (5.1 cm.) or less between the thumb pad and the fingers, with the thumb attempting to oppose the fingers, evaluate as favorable ankylosis.

(5) If there is limitation of motion of two or more digits, evaluate each digit separately and combine the evaluations.

I. Multiple Digits: Unfavorable Ankylosis

                                                                                                                          Rating
                                                                                                                    Major       Minor

5216 Five digits of one hand, unfavorable ankylosis of ....................................... 60.......... 50

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted.

5217 Four digits of one hand, unfavorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any three fingers...................................................................... 60.......... 50
Index, long, ring, and little fingers................................................................ 50.......... 40

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted.

5218 Three digits of one hand, unfavorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any two fingers....................................................................... 50.......... 40
Index, long, and ring; index, long, and little; or
index, ring and little fingers......................................................................... 40.......... 30
Long, ring, and little fingers........................................................................ 30.......... 20

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted.

5219 Two digits of one hand, unfavorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any finger................................................................................. 40.......... 30
Index and long; index and ring; or index and little fingers................................ 30.......... 20
Long and ring; long and little; or ring and little fingers..................................... 20.......... 20

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted.

II. Multiple Digits: Favorable Ankylosis


5220 Five digits of one hand, favorable ankylosis of.......................................... 50.......... 40

5221 Four digits of one hand, favorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any three fingers..................................................................... 50.......... 40
Index, long, ring, and little......................................................................... 40.......... 30

5222 Three digits of one hand, favorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any two fingers....................................................................... 40.......... 30
Index, long, and ring; index, long, and little;
or index, ring, and little fingers.................................................................... 30.......... 20
Long, ring, and little fingers........................................................................ 20.......... 20

5223 Two digits of one hand, favorable ankylosis of:

Thumb and any finger................................................................................ 30.......... 20
Index and long; index and ring; or index and little fingers............................... 20.......... 20
Long and ring; long and little; or ring and little fingers.................................... 10.......... 10

III. Ankylosis of Individual Digits


5224 Thumb, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable................................................................................................ 20.......... 20
Favorable.................................................................................................... 10.......... 10

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted and whether an additional evaluation is warranted for resulting limitation of motion of other digits or interference with overall function of the hand.

5225 Index finger, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable or favorable.............................................................................. 10.......... 10

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted and whether an additional evaluation is warranted for resulting limitation of motion of other digits or interference with overall function of the hand.

5226 Long finger, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable or favorable............................................................................... 10.......... 10

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted and whether an additional evaluation is warranted for resulting limitation of motion of other digits or interference with overall function of the hand.

5227 Ring or little finger, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable or favorable................................................................................ 0............ 0

Note: Also consider whether evaluation as amputation is warranted and whether an additional evaluation is warranted for resulting limitation of motion of other digits or interference with overall function of the hand.

 

IV. Limitation of Motion of Individual Digits

                                                                                                                         Rating
                                                                                                                 Major       Minor

5228 Thumb, limitation of motion:

With a gap of more than two inches (5.1 cm.) between
the thumb pad and the fingers, with the thumb
attempting to oppose the fingers................................................................ 20.......... 20

With a gap of one to two inches (2.5 to 5.1 cm.) between
the thumb pad and the fingers, with the thumb
attempting to oppose the fingers................................................................ 10.......... 10

With a gap of less than one inch (2.5 cm.) between the
thumb pad and the fingers, with the thumb
attempting to oppose the fingers................................................................. 0............ 0

5229 Index or long finger, limitation of motion:

With a gap of one inch (2.5 cm.) or more between the
fingertip and the proximal transverse crease of the
palm, with the finger flexed to the extent possible, or
with extension limited by more than 30 degrees........................................... 10.......... 10

With a gap of less than one inch (2.5 cm.) between the
fingertip and the proximal transverse crease of the
palm, with the finger flexed to the extent possible, and;
extension is limited by no more than 30 degrees............................................ 0............ 0

5230 Ring or little finger, limitation of motion:

Any limitation of motion............................................................................. 0............ 0

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The Spine

General Rating Formula for Diseases and Injuries of the Spine

(For diagnostic codes 5235 to 42 unless 5243 is evaluated under the Formula for Rating

Intervertebral Disc Syndrome Based on Incapacitating Episodes):

With or without symptoms such as pain (whether or not it radiates), stiffness, or aching in the area of the spine affected by residuals of injury or disease

Unfavorable ankylosis of the entire spine............................................................... 100

Unfavorable ankylosis of the entire thoracolumbar spine........................................... 50

Unfavorable ankylosis of the entire cervical spine; or, forward flexion
of the thoracolumbar spine 30 degrees or less; or, favorable ankylosis of
the entire thoracolumbar spine................................................................................ 40

Forward flexion of the cervical spine 15 degrees or less; or, favorable
ankylosis of the entire cervical spine....................................................................... 30

Forward flexion of the thoracolumbar spine greater than 30 degrees but not
greater than 60 degrees; or, forward flexion of the cervical spine greater
than 15 degrees but not greater than 30 degrees; or, the combined range of
motion of the thoracolumbar spine not greater than 120 degrees; or, the
combined range of motion of the cervical spine not greater than 170 degrees;
or, muscle spasm or guarding severe enough to result in an abnormal gait
or abnormal spinal contour such as scoliosis, reversed lordosis, or
abnormal kyphosis .............................................................................................. 20

Forward flexion of the thoracolumbar spine greater than 60 degrees but not
greater than 85 degrees; or, forward flexion of the cervical spine greater than
30 degrees but not greater than 40 degrees; or, combined range of motion of
the thoracolumbar spine greater than 120 degrees but not greater than 235
degrees; or, combined range of motion of the cervical spine greater than
170 degrees but not greater than 335 degrees; or, muscle spasm, guarding,
or localized tenderness not resulting in abnormal gait or abnormal spinal
contour; or, vertebral body fracture with loss of 50 percent or more of the
height ................................................................................................................ 10

Note (1): Evaluate any associated objective neurologic abnormalities, including, but not limited to, bowel or bladder impairment, separately, under an appropriate diagnostic code.

Note (2): (See also Plate V.) For VA compensation purposes, normal forward flexion of the cervical spine is zero to 45 degrees, extension is zero to 45 degrees, left and right lateral flexion are zero to 45 degrees, and left and right lateral rotation are zero to 80 degrees. Normal forward flexion of the thoracolumbar spine is zero to 90 degrees, extension is zero to 30 degrees, left and right lateral flexion are zero to 30 degrees, and left and right lateral rotation are zero to 30 degrees. The combined range of motion refers to the sum of the range of forward flexion, extension, left and right lateral flexion, and left and right rotation. The normal combined range of motion of the cervical spine is 340 degrees and of the thoracolumbar spine is 240 degrees. The normal ranges of motion for each component of spinal motion provided in this note are the maximum that can be used for calculation of the combined range of motion.

Note (3): In exceptional cases, an examiner may state that because of age, body habitus, neurologic disease, or other factors not the result of disease or injury of the spine, the range of motion of the spine in a particular individual should be considered normal for that individual, even though it does not conform to the normal range of motion stated in Note (2). Provided that the examiner supplies an explanation, the examiner’s assessment that the range of motion is normal for that individual will be accepted.

Note (4): Round each range of motion measurement to the nearest five degrees.

Note (5): For VA compensation purposes, unfavorable ankylosis is a condition in which the entire cervical spine, the entire thoracolumbar spine, or the entire spine is fixed in flexion or extension, and the ankylosis results in one or more of the following: difficulty walking because of a limited line of vision; restricted opening of the mouth and chewing; breathing limited to diaphragmatic respiration; gastrointestinal symptoms due to pressure of the costal margin on the abdomen; dyspnea or dysphagia; atlantoaxial or cervical subluxation or dislocation; or neurologic symptoms due to nerve root stretching. Fixation of a spinal segment in neutral position (zero degrees) always represents favorable ankylosis.

Note (6): Separately evaluate disability of the thoracolumbar and cervical spine segments, except when there is unfavorable ankylosis of both segments, which will be rated as a single disability.

5235 Vertebral fracture or dislocation

5236 Sacroiliac injury and weakness

5237 Lumbosacral or cervical strain

5238 Spinal stenosis

5239 Spondylolisthesis or segmental instability

5240 Ankylosing spondylitis

5241 Spinal fusion

5242 Degenerative arthritis of the spine (see also diagnostic code 5003)

5243 Intervertebral disc syndrome

Evaluate intervertebral disc syndrome (preoperatively or postoperatively) either under the General Rating Formula for Diseases and Injuries of the Spine or under the Formula for Rating Intervertebral Disc Syndrome Based on Incapacitating Episodes, whichever method results in the higher evaluation when all disabilities are combined under §4.25.

Formula for Rating Intervertebral Disc Syndrome Based on Incapacitating Episodes

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 6 weeks during the
past 12 months............................................................................................................ 60

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 4 weeks but less than
6 weeks during the past 12 months................................................................................ 40

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 2 weeks but less than
4 weeks during the past 12 months................................................................................ 20

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least one week but less than
2 weeks during the past 12 months................................................................................ 10

Note (1): For purposes of evaluations under diagnostic code 5243, an incapacitating episode is a period of acute signs and symptoms due to intervertebral disc syndrome that requires bed rest prescribed by a physician and treatment by a physician.

Note (2): If intervertebral disc syndrome is present in more than one spinal segment, provided that the effects in each spinal segment are clearly distinct, evaluate each segment on the basis of incapacitating episodes or under the General Rating Formula for Diseases and Injuries of the Spine, whichever method results in a higher evaluation for that segment.

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The Hip and Thigh

5250 Hip, ankylosis of:

Unfavorable, extremely unfavorable ankylosis,
the foot not reaching ground, crutches necessitated ................................................... 903

Intermediate........................................................................................................... 70

Favorable in flexion at an angle between 20º and 40º and
slight adduction or abduction.................................................................................... 60

5251 Thigh, limitation of extension of:

Extension limited to 5º............................................................................................. 10

5252 Thigh, limitation of flexion of:

Flexion limited to 10º................................................................................................ 40
Flexion limited to 20º................................................................................................ 30
Flexion limited to 30º................................................................................................ 20
Flexion limited to 45º................................................................................................ 10

5253 Thigh, impairment of:

Limitation of abduction of, motion lost beyond 10º.................................................. 20
Limitation of adduction of, cannot cross legs........................................................... 10
Limitation of rotation of, cannot toe-out more than 15º,
affected leg........................................................................................................... 10

5254 Hip, flail joint...................................................................................................... 80

5255 Femur, impairment of:

Fracture of shaft or anatomical neck of:

With nonunion, with loose motion (spiral or oblique fracture) ............................. 80
With nonunion, without loose motion, weightbearing
preserved with aid of brace............................................................................... 60

Fracture of surgical neck of, with false joint.............................................................. 60
Malunion of:

With marked knee or hip disability.................................................................... 30
With moderate knee or hip disability................................................................. 20
With slight knee or hip disability........................................................................ 10

3Entitled to special monthly compensation.

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The Knee and Leg

5256 Knee, ankylosis of:

Extremely unfavorable, in flexion at an angle of 45° or more..................................... 60
In flexion between 20° and 45°............................................................................... 50
In flexion between 10° and 20°............................................................................... 40
Favorable angle in full extension, or in slight flexion
between 0° and 10°................................................................................................ 30

5257 Knee, other impairment of:
Recurrent subluxation or lateral instability:

Severe................................................................................................................. 30
Moderate............................................................................................................. 20
Slight .................................................................................................................. 10

5258 Cartilage, semilunar, dislocated, with frequent episodes of
“locking,” pain, and effusion into the joint....................................................................... 20

5259 Cartilage, semilunar, removal of, symptomatic......................................................... 10

5260 Leg, limitation of flexion of:

Flexion limited to 15°............................................................................................... 30
Flexion limited to 30°............................................................................................... 20
Flexion limited to 45°............................................................................................... 10
Flexion limited to 60°................................................................................................ 0

5261 Leg, limitation of extension of:

Extension limited to 45°........................................................................................... 50
Extension limited to 30°........................................................................................... 40
Extension limited to 20°........................................................................................... 30
Extension limited to 15°........................................................................................... 20
Extension limited to 10°........................................................................................... 10
Extension limited to 5°.............................................................................................. 0

5262 Tibia and fibula, impairment of:

Nonunion of, with loose motion, requiring brace..................................................... 40
Malunion of:

With marked knee or ankle disability................................................................ 30
With moderate knee or ankle disability............................................................. 20
With slight knee or ankle disability................................................................... 10

5263 Genu recurvatum (acquired, traumatic, with weakness and
insecurity in weight-bearing objectively demonstrated) ................................................. 10

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The Ankle

5270 Ankle, ankylosis of:

In plantar flexion at more than 40º, or in dorsiflexion at
more than 10° or with abduction, adduction, inversion
or eversion deformity........................................................................................... 40

In plantar flexion, between 30º and 40º, or in dorsiflexion,
between 0º and 10º.............................................................................................. 30

In plantar flexion, less than 30º............................................................................... 20

5271 Ankle, limited motion of:

Marked ................................................................................................................. 20
Moderate .............................................................................................................. 10

5272 Subastragalar or tarsal joint, ankylosis of:

In poor weight-bearing position .............................................................................. 20
In good weight-bearing position .............................................................................. 10

5273 Os calcis or astragalus (talus), malunion of:

Marked deformity.................................................................................................... 20
Moderate deformity................................................................................................. 10

5274 Astragalectomy...................................................................................................... 20

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Shortening of the Lower Extremity

5275 Bones, of the lower extremity, shortening of:

Over 4 inches (1 0.2 cms.) ...................................................................................... 603
3-1/2 to 4 inches (8.9 cms. to 10.2 cms.) ................................................................. 503
3 to 3-1/2 inches (7.6 cms.to 8.9 cms.)..................................................................... 40
2-1/2 to 3 inches (6.4 cms. to 7.6 cms.).................................................................... 30
2 to 2-1/2 inches (5.1 cms. to 6.4 cms.).................................................................... 20
1-1/4 to 2 inches (3.2 cms. to 5.1 cms.).................................................................... 10

Note: Measure both lower extremities from anterior superior spine of the ilium to the internal malleolus of the tibia. Not to be combined with other ratings for fracture or faulty union in the same extremity.

3Also entitled to special monthly compensation.

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The Foot

5276 Flatfoot, acquired: (pes planus)

Pronounced; marked pronation, extreme tenderness of plantar
surfaces of the feet, marked inward displacement and severe
spasm of the tendo achillis on manipulation, not improved by
orthopedic shoes or appliances:

Bilateral...................................................................................................... 50
Unilateral ................................................................................................... 30

Severe; objective evidence of marked deformity (pronation,
abduction, etc.), pain on manipulation and use accentuated,
indication of swelling on use, characteristic callosities:

Bilateral...................................................................................................... 30
Unilateral.................................................................................................... 20

Moderate; weight-bearing line over or medial to great toe,
inward bowing of the tendo achillis, pain on manipulation
and use of the feet, bilateral or unilateral ............................................................. 10

Mild: symptoms relieved by built-up shoe or arch support....................................... 0

5277 Weak Foot, bilateral:
A symptomatic condition secondary to many constitutional
conditions, characterized by atrophy of the musculature,
disturbed circulation, and weakness:

Rate the underlying condition, minimum rating ..................................................... 10

5278 Claw foot (pes cavus), acquired:

Marked contraction of plantar fascia with dropped forefoot, all toes
hammer toes, very painful callosities, marked varus deformity:

Bilateral........................................................................................................ 50
Unilateral...................................................................................................... 30

All toes tending to dorsiflexion, limitation of dorsiflexion at ankle
to right angle, shortened plantar fascia, and marked tenderness
under metatarsal heads:

Bilateral....................................................................................................... 30
Unilateral..................................................................................................... 20

Great toe dorsiflexed, some limitation of dorsiflexion at ankle,
definite tenderness under metatarsal heads:

Bilateral........................................................................................................ 10
Unilateral...................................................................................................... 10

Slight ................................................................................................................... 0

5279 Metatarsalgia, anterior (Morton’s disease), unilateral, or bilateral............................ 10

5280 Hallux valgus, unilateral:

Operated with resection of metatarsal head............................................................. 10
Severe, if equivalent to amputation of great toe....................................................... 10

5281 Hallux rigidus, unilateral, severe:

Rate as hallux valgus, severe.
Note: Not to be combined with claw foot ratings.

5282 Hammer toe:

All toes, unilateral without claw foot.......................................................................... 10
Single toes................................................................................................................ 0

5283 Tarsal, or metatarsal bones, malunion of, or nonunion of:

Severe..................................................................................................................... 30
Moderately severe ................................................................................................... 20
Moderate ................................................................................................................ 10

Note: With actual loss of use of the foot, rate 40 percent.

5284 Foot injuries, other:

Severe...................................................................................................................... 30
Moderately severe..................................................................................................... 20
Moderate ................................................................................................................. 10

Note: With actual loss of use of the foot, rate 40 percent.

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The Skull

5296 Skull, loss of part of, both inner and outer tables:

With brain hernia.................................................................................................. 80
Without brain hernia:
Area larger than size of a 50-cent piece or 1.140 in2 (7.355 cm2 )............................. 50
Area intermediate.................................................................................................. 30
Area smaller than the size of a 25-cent piece
or 0.716 in2 (4.619 cm2 )...................................................................................... 10

Note: Rate separately for intracranial complications.

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The Ribs

5297 Ribs, removal of:

More than six.......................................................................................................... 50
Five or six............................................................................................................... 40
Three or four........................................................................................................... 30
Two ....................................................................................................................... 20
One or resection of two or more ribs without regeneration........................................... 10

Note (1): The rating for rib resection or removal is not to be applied with ratings for purulent pleurisy, lobectomy, pneumonectomy or injuries of pleural cavity.

Note (2): However, rib resection will be considered as rib removal in thoracoplasty performed for collapse therapy or to accomplish obliteration of space and will be combined with the rating for lung collapse, or with the rating for lobectomy, pneumonectomy or the graduated ratings for pulmonary tuberculosis.

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The Coccyx

5298 Coccyx, removal of:

Partial or complete, with painful residuals................................................................ 10
Without painful residuals........................................................................................... 0

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§4.73 Schedule of Ratings-Muscle Injuries.

Note: When evaluating any claim involving muscle injuries resulting in loss of use of any extremity or loss of use of both buttocks (diagnostic code 5317, Muscle Group XVII), refer to §3.350 of this chapter to determine whether the veteran may be entitled to special monthly compensation.

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The Shoulder Girdle and Arm

                                                                                                                                   Rating
                                                                                                                     Dominant       Non-Dominant

5301 Group I. Function: Upward rotation of scapula; elevation of arm
above shoulder level. Extrinsic muscles of shoulder girdle:
(1) Trapezius; (2) levator scapulae; (3) serratus magnus.

Severe ......................................................................................................... 40 ............. 30
Moderately Severe ........................................................................................ 30 ............. 20
Moderate ...................................................................................................... 10 ............. 10
Slight ............................................................................................................. 0 ............... 0

5302 Group II. Function: Depression of arm from vertical overhead to hanging
at side (1, 2); downward rotation of scapula (3, 4); 1 and 2 act with
Group III in forward and backward swing of arm. Extrinsic muscles
of shoulder girdle: (1) Pectoralis major II (costosternal); (2) latissimus
dorsi and teres major (teres major, although technically an intrinsic
muscle, is included with latissimus dorsi); (3) pectoralis minor;
(4) rhomboid.

Severe ........................................................................................................... 40 .......... 30
Moderately Severe ......................................................................................... 30 .......... 20
Moderate ....................................................................................................... 20 .......... 20
Slight .............................................................................................................. 0 ............ 0

5303 Group III. Function: Elevation and abduction of arm to level of shoulder;
act with 1 and 2 of Group II in forward and backward swing of arm.
Intrinsic muscles of shoulder girdle: (1) Pectoralis major I (clavicular);
(2) deltoid.

Severe ........................................................................................................... 40 .......... 30
Moderately Severe .......................................................................................... 30 .......... 20
Moderate ....................................................................................................... 20 .......... 20
Slight .............................................................................................................. 0 ........... 0

5304 Group IV. Function: Stabilization of shoulder against injury in strong
movements, holding head of humerus in socket; abduction; outward
rotation and inward rotation of arm. Intrinsic muscles of shoulder
girdle: (1) Supraspinatus; (2) infraspinatus and teres minor;
(3) subscapularis; (4) coracobrachialis.

Severe ........................................................................................................... 30 ......... 20
Moderately Severe ......................................................................................... 20 ......... 20
Moderate ...................................................................................................... 10 .......... 10
Slight ............................................................................................................. 0 ........... 0

5305 Group V. Function: Elbow supination (1) (long head of biceps is stabilizer
of shoulder joint); flexion of elbow (1, 2, 3). Flexor muscles of elbow:
(1) Biceps; (2) brachialis; (3) brachioradialis.

Severe ......................................................................................................... 40 ........ 30
Moderately Severe ........................................................................................ 30 ........ 20
Moderate ...................................................................................................... 10 ........ 10
Slight ............................................................................................................. 0 .......... 0

5306 Group VI. Function: Extension of elbow (long head of triceps is stabilizer
of shoulder joint). Extensor muscles of the elbow: (1) Triceps; (2) anconeus.

Severe .......................................................................................................... 40 ......... 30
Moderately Severe ........................................................................................ 30 ......... 20
Moderate ..................................................................................................... 10 .......... 10
Slight ............................................................................................................ 0 ............ 0

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The Forearm and Hand

                                                                                                                                Rating
                                                                                                                Dominant   Non-Dominant
5307 Group VII. Function: Flexion of wrist and fingers. Muscles arising from
internal condyle of humerus: Flexors of the carpus and long flexors of
fingers and thumb; pronator.

Severe ...................................................................................................... 40 ............ 30
Moderately Severe .................................................................................... 30 ............ 20
Moderate ................................................................................................. 10 ............. 10
Slight ........................................................................................................ 0 .............. 0

5308 Group VIII. Function: Extension of wrist, fingers, and thumb; abduction
of thumb. Muscles arising mainly from external condyle of humerus:
Extensors of carpus, fingers, and thumb; supinator.

Severe ...................................................................................................... 30 ........... 20
Moderately Severe ..................................................................................... 20 ........... 20
Moderate .................................................................................................. 10 ............ 10
Slight .......................................................................................................... 0 ............ 0

5309 Group IX. Function: The forearm muscles act in strong grasping movements
and are supplemented by the intrinsic muscles in delicate manipulative
movements. Intrinsic muscles of hand: Thenar eminence; short flexor,
opponens, abductor and adductor of thumb; hypothenar eminence;
short flexor, opponens and abductor of little finger; 4 lumbricales;
4 dorsal and 3 palmar interossei.

Note: The hand is so compact a structure that isolated muscle injuries are rare, being nearly always complicated with injuries of bones, joints, tendons, etc. Rate on limitation of motion, minimum 10 percent.

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The Foot and Leg

5310 Group X. Function: Movements of forefoot and toes; propulsion thrust
in walking. Intrinsic muscles of the foot: Plantar: (1) Flexor digitorum
brevis; (2) abductor hallucis; (3) abductor digiti minimi; (4) quadratus
plantae; (5) lumbricales; (6) flexor hallucis brevis; (7) adductor hallucis;
(8) flexor digiti minimi brevis; (9) dorsal and plantar interossei. Other
important plantar structures: Plantar aponeurosis, long plantar and
calcaneonavicular ligament, tendons of posterior tibial, peroneus longus,
and long flexors of great and little toes

Severe .................................................................................................................. 30
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................. 20
Moderate .............................................................................................................. 10
Slight ...................................................................................................................... 0

Dorsal: (1) Extensor hallucis brevis; (2) extensor digitorum brevis. Other
important dorsal structures: cruciate, crural, deltoid, and other ligaments;
tendons of long extensors of toes and peronei muscles.

Severe ................................................................................................................. 20
Moderately Severe ............................................................................................... 10
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

Note: Minimum rating for through-and-through wounds of the foot is 10%.

5311 Group XI. Function: Propulsion, plantar flexion of foot (1); stabilization of
arch (2, 3); flexion of toes (4, 5); flexion of knee (6). Posterior and lateral
crural muscles, and muscles of the calf: (1) Triceps surae (gastrocnemius
and soleus); (2) tibialis posterior; (3) peroneus longus; (4) peroneus
brevis; (5) flexor hallucis longus; (6) flexor digitorum longus;
(7) popliteus; (8) plantaris.

Severe .................................................................................................................. 30
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 20
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

5312 Group XII. Function: Dorsiflexion (1); extension of toes (2); stabilization of
arch (3). Anterior muscles of the leg: (1) Tibialis anterior; (2) extensor
digitorum longus; (3) extensor hallucis longus; (4) peroneus tertius.

Severe .................................................................................................................. 30
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 20
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

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The Pelvic Girdle and Thigh Rating

5313 Group XIII. Function: Extension of hip and flexion of knee; outward and
inward rotation of flexed knee; acting with rectus femoris and sartorius
(see XIV, 1, 2) synchronizing simultaneous flexion of hip and knee and
extension of hip and knee by belt-over-pulley action at knee joint. Posterior
thigh group, Hamstring complex of 2-joint muscles: (1) Biceps femoris;
(2) semimembranosus; (3) semitendinosus.

Severe .................................................................................................................. 40
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 30
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight ..................................................................................................................... 0

5314 Group XIV. Function: Extension of knee (2, 3, 4, 5); simultaneous flexion of
hip and flexion of knee (1); tension of fascia lata and iliotibial (Maissiat’s)
band, acting with XVII (1) in postural support of body (6); acting with
hamstrings in synchronizing hip and knee (1, 2). Anterior thigh group:
(1) Sartorius; (2) rectus femoris; (3) vastus externus; (4) vastus intermedius;
(5) vastus internus; (6) tensor vaginae femoris.

Severe .................................................................................................................. 40
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 30
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

5315 Group XV. Function: Adduction of hip (1, 2, 3, 4); flexion of hip (1, 2);
flexion of knee (4). Mesial thigh group: (1) Adductor longus;
(2) adductor brevis; (3) adductor magnus; (4) gracilis.

Severe .................................................................................................................. 30
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 20
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

5316 Group XVI. Function: Flexion of hip (1, 2, 3). Pelvic girdle group 1:
(1) Psoas; (2) iliacus; (3) pectineus.

Severe ................................................................................................................ 40
Moderately Severe ............................................................................................... 30
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight .................................................................................................................... 0

5317 Group XVII. Function: Extension of hip (1); abduction of thigh; elevation
of opposite side of pelvis (2, 3); tension of fascia lata and iliotibial
(Maissiat’s) band, acting with XIV (6) in postural support of body
steadying pelvis upon head of femur and condyles of femur on tibia (1).
Pelvic girdle group 2: (1) Gluteus maximus; (2) gluteus medius;
(3) gluteus minimus.

Severe ................................................................................................................ *50
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................ 40
Moderate .............................................................................................................. 20
Slight ..................................................................................................................... 0

*If bilateral, see §3.350(a)(3) of this chapter to determine whether the veteran may be entitled to special monthly compensation.

5318 Group XVIII. Function: Outward rotation of thigh and stabilization of hip
joint. Pelvic girdle group 3: (1) Pyriformis; (2) gemellus (superior or
inferior); (3) obturator (external or internal); (4) quadratus femoris.

Severe .................................................................................................................... 30
Moderately Severe .................................................................................................. 20
Moderate ................................................................................................................ 10
Slight ....................................................................................................................... 0

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The Torso and Neck

5319 Group XIX. Function: Support and compression of abdominal wall and
lower thorax; flexion and lateral motions of spine; synergists in strong
downward movements of arm (1). Muscles of the abdominal wall:
(1) Rectus abdominis; (2) external oblique; (3) internal oblique;
(4) transversalis; (5) quadratus lumborum.

Severe .................................................................................................................... 50
Moderately Severe ................................................................................................... 30
Moderate ................................................................................................................ 10
Slight........................................................................................................................ 0

5320 Group XX. Function: Postural support of body; extension and lateral
movements of spine. Spinal muscles: Sacrospinalis (erector spinae and its
prolongations in thoracic and cervical regions).

Cervical and thoracic region:

Severe ............................................................................................................. 40
Moderately Severe ............................................................................................ 20
Moderate ......................................................................................................... 10
Slight ................................................................................................................ 0

Lumbar region:

Severe ........................................................................................................... 60
Moderately Severe .......................................................................................... 40
Moderate ........................................................................................................ 20
Slight ................................................................................................................ 0

5321 Group XXI. Function: Respiration. Muscles of respiration: Thoracic
muscle group.

Severe or Moderately Severe ................................................................................. 20
Moderate ............................................................................................................. 10
Slight ..................................................................................................................... 0

5322 Group XXII. Function: Rotary and forward movements of the head;
respiration; deglutition. Muscles of the front of the neck: (Lateral, supra-,
and infrahyoid group.) (1) Trapezius I (clavicular insertion);
(2) sternocleidomastoid; (3) the “hyoid” muscles; (4) sternothyroid;
(5) digastric.

Severe ................................................................................................................... 30
Moderately Severe ...................................................................................................20
Moderate ............................................................................................................... 10
Slight ...................................................................................................................... 0

5323 Group XXIII. Function: Movements of the head; fixation of shoulder
movements. Muscles of the side and back of the neck: Suboccipital;
lateral vertebral and anterior vertebral muscles.

Severe ................................................................................................................... 30
Moderately Severe .................................................................................................. 20
Moderate ............................................................................................................... 10
Slight ....................................................................................................................... 0

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Miscellaneous

5324 Diaphragm, rupture of, with herniation. Rate under diagnostic code 7346.

5325 Muscle injury, facial muscles. Evaluate functional impairment as seventh
(facial) cranial nerve neuropathy (diagnostic code 8207), disfiguring
scar (diagnostic code 7800), etc. Minimum, if interfering to any extent
with mastication................................................................................................................ 10

5326 Muscle hernia, extensive. Without other injury to the muscle......................................... 10

5327 Muscle, neoplasm of, malignant (excluding soft tissue sarcoma) ................................... 100

Note: A rating of 100 percent shall continue beyond the cessation of any surgery, radiation treatment, antineoplastic chemotherapy or other therapeutic procedures. Six months after discontinuance of such treatment, the appropriate disability rating shall be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based upon that or any subsequent examination shall be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. If there has been no local recurrence or metastasis, rate on residual impairment of function.

5328 Muscle, neoplasm of, benign, postoperative. Rate on impairment of function, i.e., limitation of motion, or scars, diagnostic code 7805, etc.

5329 Sarcoma, soft tissue (of muscle, fat, or fibrous connective tissue) .................................. 100

Note: A rating of 100 percent shall continue beyond the cessation of any surgery, radiation treatment, antineoplastic chemotherapy or other therapeutic procedures. Six months after discontinuance of such treatment, the appropriate disability rating shall be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based upon that or any subsequent examination shall be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. If there has been no local recurrence or metastasis, rate on residual impairment of function.

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The Organs of Special Sense

§4.75 General considerations for evaluating visual impairment.

(a) Visual impairment. The evaluation of visual impairment is based on impairment of visual acuity (excluding developmental errors of refraction), visual field, and muscle function.

(b) Examination for visual impairment. The examination must be conducted by a licensed optometrist or by a licensed ophthalmologist. The examiner must identify the disease, injury, or other pathologic process responsible for any visual impairment found. Examinations of visual fields or muscle function will be conducted only when there is a medical indication of disease or injury that may be associated with visual field defect or impaired muscle function. Unless medically contraindicated, the fundus must be examined with the claimant’s pupils dilated.

(c) Service-connected visual impairment of only one eye. Subject to the provisions of 38 CFR 3.383(a), if visual impairment of only one eye is service-connected, the visual acuity of the other eye will be considered to be 20/40 for purposes of evaluating the service-connected visual impairment.

(d) Maximum evaluation for visual impairment of one eye. The evaluation for visual impairment of one eye must not exceed 30 percent unless there is anatomical loss of the eye. Combine the evaluation for visual impairment of one eye with evaluations for other disabilities of the same eye that are not based on visual impairment (e.g., disfigurement under diagnostic code 7800).

(e) Anatomical loss of one eye with inability to wear a prosthesis. When the claimant has anatomical loss of one eye and is unable to wear a prosthesis, increase the evaluation for visual acuity under diagnostic code 6063 by 10 percent, but the maximum evaluation for visual impairment of both eyes must not exceed 100 percent. A 10-percent increase under this paragraph precludes an evaluation under diagnostic code 7800 based on gross distortion or asymmetry of the eye but not an evaluation under diagnostic code 7800 based on other characteristics of disfigurement.

(f) Special monthly compensation. When evaluating visual impairment, refer to 38 CFR 3.350 to determine whether the claimant may be entitled to special monthly compensation. Footnotes in the schedule indicate levels of visual impairment that potentially establish entitlement to special monthly compensation; however, other levels of visual impairment combined with disabilities of other body systems may also establish entitlement. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1114 and 1155)

[40 FR 42537, Sept. 15, 1975, as amended at 73 FR 66549, Nov. 10, 2008]

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§4.76 Visual acuity.

(a) Examination of visual acuity. Examination of visual acuity must include the central uncorrected and corrected visual acuity for distance and near vision using Snellen’s test type or its equivalent.

(b) Evaluation of visual acuity.

(1) Evaluate central visual acuity on the basis of corrected distance vision with central fixation, even if a central scotoma is present. However, when the lens required to correct distance vision in the poorer eye differs by more than three diopters from the lens required to correct distance vision in the better eye (and the difference is not due to congenital or developmental refractive error), and either the poorer eye or both eyes are service connected, evaluate the visual acuity of the poorer eye using either its uncorrected or corrected visual acuity, whichever results in better combined visual acuity.

(2) Provided that he or she customarily wears contact lenses, evaluate the visual acuity of any individual affected by a corneal disorder that results in severe irregular astigmatism that can be improved more by contact lenses than by eyeglass lenses, as corrected by contact lenses.

(3) In any case where the examiner reports that there is a difference equal to two or more scheduled steps between near and distance corrected vision, with the near vision being worse, the examination report must include at least two recordings of near and distance corrected vision and an explanation of the reason for the difference. In these cases, evaluate based on corrected distance vision adjusted to one step poorer than measured.

(4) To evaluate the impairment of visual acuity where a claimant has a reported visual acuity that is between two sequentially listed visual acuities, use the visual acuity which permits the higher evaluation. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[43 FR 45352, Oct. 2, 1978, as amended at 73 FR 66549, Nov. 10, 2008]

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§4.76a Computation of average concentric contraction of visual fields.

Table III—Normal Visual Field Extent at 8 Principal Meridians


             Meridian                                                                         Normal degrees

Temporally......................................................................................... 85
Down temporally................................................................................ 85
Down.................................................................................................65
Down nasally...................................................................................... 50
Nasally............................................................................................... 60
Up nasally........................................................................................... 55
Up..................................................................................................... 45
Up temporally..................................................................................... 55
Total...................................................................................... 500



Example of computation of concentric contraction under the schedule with abnormal findings taken from Figure 1.

                    Loss                                                                                         Degrees

Temporally.......................................................................................... 55
Down temporally................................................................................. 55
Down................................................................................................. 45
Down nasally....................................................................................... 30
Nasally................................................................................................ 40
Up nasally........................................................................................... 35
Up...................................................................................................... 25
Up temporally...................................................................................... 35
Total................................................................................................ 320

Remaining field 500º minus 320º = 180º. 180º¸8 = 22.5º average concentric contraction.

[43 FR 45352, Oct. 2, 1978, as amended at 73 FR 66549, Nov. 10, 2008]

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§4.77 Visual fields.

(a) Examination of visual fields. Examiners must use either Goldmann kinetic perimetry or automated perimetry using Humphrey Model 750, Octopus Model 101, or later versions of these perimetric devices with simulated kinetic Goldmann testing capability. For phakic (normal) individuals, as well as for pseudophakic or aphakic individuals who are well adapted to intraocular lens implant or contact lens correction, visual field examinations must be conducted using a standard target size and luminance, which is Goldmann’s equivalent III/4e. For aphakic individuals not well adapted to contact lens correction or pseudophakic individuals not well adapted to intraocular lens implant, visual field examinations must be conducted using Goldmann’s equivalent IV/4e. In all cases, the results must be recorded on a standard Goldmann chart (see Figure 1), and the Goldmann chart must be included with the examination report. The examiner must chart at least 16 meridians 22-1/2 degrees apart for each eye and indicate the Goldmann equivalent used. See Table III for the normal extent (in degrees) of the visual fields at the 8 principal meridians (45 degrees apart). When the examiner indicates that additional testing is necessary to evaluate visual fields, the additional testing must be conducted using either a tangent screen or a 30-degree threshold visual field with the Goldmann III stimulus size. The examination report must then include the tracing of either the tangent screen or of the 30-degree threshold visual field with the Goldmann III stimulus size.

(b) Evaluation of visual fields. Determine the average concentric contraction of the visual field of each eye by measuring the remaining visual field (in degrees) at each of eight principal meridians 45 degrees apart, adding them, and dividing the sum by eight.

(c) Combination of visual field defect and decreased visual acuity. To determine the evaluation for visual impairment when both decreased visual acuity and visual field defect are present in one or both eyes and are service connected, separately evaluate the visual acuity and visual field defect (expressed as a level of visual acuity), and combine them under the provisions of §4.25. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

 

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§4.78 Muscle function.

(a) Examination of muscle function. The examiner must use a Goldmann perimeter chart that identifies the four major quadrants (upward, downward, left and right lateral) and the central field (20 degrees or less) (see Figure 2). The examiner must chart the areas of diplopia and include the plotted chart with the examination report.

(b) Evaluation of muscle function.

(1) An evaluation for diplopia will be assigned to only one eye. When a claimant has both diplopia and decreased visual acuity or visual field defect, assign a level of corrected visual acuity for the poorer eye (or the affected eye, if disability of only one eye is service-connected) that is: one step poorer than it would otherwise warrant if the evaluation for diplopia under diagnostic code 6090 is 20/70 or 20/100; two steps poorer if the evaluation under diagnostic code 6090 is 20/200 or 15/200; or three steps poorer if the evaluation under diagnostic code 6090 is 5/200. This adjusted level of corrected visual acuity, however, must not exceed a level of 5/200. Use the adjusted visual acuity for the poorer eye (or the affected eye, if disability of only one eye is service-connected), and the corrected visual acuity for the better eye (or visual acuity of 20/40 for the other eye, if only one eye is service-connected) to determine the percentage evaluation for visual impairment under diagnostic codes 6065 through 6066.

(2) When diplopia extends beyond more than one quadrant or range of degrees, evaluate diplopia based on the quadrant and degree range that provides the highest evaluation.

(3) When diplopia exists in two separate areas of the same eye, increase the equivalent visual acuity under diagnostic code 6090 to the next poorer level of visual acuity, not to exceed 5/200. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 43 FR 45354, Oct. 2, 1978; 73 FR 66550, Nov. 10, 2008]

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§4.79 Schedule of ratings—eye.


Diseases of the Eye

6000 Choroidopathy, including uveitis, iritis, cyclitis, and choroiditis.

6001 Keratopathy.

6002 Scleritis.

6006 Retinopathy or maculopathy.

6007 Intraocular hemorrhage.

6008 Detachment of retina.

6009 Unhealed eye injury

General Rating Formula for Diagnostic Codes 6000 through 6009

Evaluate on the basis of either visual impairment due to the particular condition or on
incapacitating episodes, whichever results in a higher evaluation.

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 6 weeks
during the past 12 months........................................................................................... 60

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 4 weeks,
but less than 6 weeks, during the past 12 months........................................................... 40

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 2 weeks,
but less than 4 weeks, during the past 12 months........................................................... 20

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 1 week,
but less than 2 weeks, during the past 12 months............................................................ 10

Note: For VA purposes, an incapacitating episode is a period of acute symptoms severe enough to require prescribed bed rest and treatment by a physician or other healthcare provider.


6010 Tuberculosis of eye:

Active ......................................................................................................................... 100
Inactive: Evaluate under § 4.88c or § 4.89 of this part, whichever is appropriate.

6011 Retinal scars, atrophy, or irregularities:

Localized scars, atrophy, or irregularities of the retina, unilateral or bilateral, that are
centrally located and that result in an irregular, duplicated, enlarged,
or diminished image..................................................................................................... 10

Alternatively, evaluate based on visual impairment due to retinal scars, atrophy, or irregularities, if this would result in a higher evaluation.


6012 Angle-closure glaucoma:

Evaluate on the basis of either visual impairment due to angle-closure glaucoma or incapacitating episodes, whichever results in a higher evaluation.

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 6 weeks
during the past 12 months............................................................................................... 60

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 4 weeks,
but less than 6 weeks, during the past 12 months.............................................................. 40

With incapacitating episodes having a total duration of at least 2 weeks,
but less than 4 weeks, during the past 12 months.............................................................. 20

Minimum evaluation if continuous medication is required................................................... 10

Note: For VA purposes, an incapacitating episode is a period of acute symptoms severe enough to require prescribed bed rest and treatment by a physician or other healthcare provider.


6013 Open-angle glaucoma:

Evaluate based on visual impairment due to open-angle glaucoma.
Minimum evaluation if continuous medication is required.................................................... 10

6014 Malignant neoplasms (eyeball only):

Malignant neoplasm of the eyeball that requires therapy that is comparable to
that used for systemic malignancies, i.e., systemic chemotherapy, X-ray therapy
more extensive than to the area of the eye, or surgery more extensive than
enucleation...................................................................................................................... 100

Note: Continue the 100-percent rating beyond the cessation of any surgical, X-ray, antineoplastic chemotherapy or other therapeutic procedure. Six months after discontinuance of such treatment, the appropriate disability rating will be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based upon that or any subsequent examination will be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. If there has been no local recurrence or metastasis, evaluate based on residuals.

Malignant neoplasm of the eyeball that does not require therapy comparable to that for systemic malignancies:
Separately evaluate visual impairment and nonvisual impairment, e.g., disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800), and combine the evaluations.

6015 Benign neoplasms (of eyeball and adnexa):

Separately evaluate visual impairment and nonvisual impairment, e.g., disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800), and combine the evaluations.


6016 Nystagmus, central........................................................................................................... 10


6017 Trachomatous conjunctivitis:

Active: Evaluate based on visual impairment, minimum............................................................... 30
Inactive: Evaluate based on residuals, such as visual impairment and disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800).


6018 Chronic conjunctivitis (nontrachomatous):

Active (with objective findings, such as red, thick conjunctivae,
mucous secretion, etc.)............................................................................................................. 10
Inactive: Evaluate based on residuals, such as visual impairment and disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800).

6019 Ptosis, unilateral or bilateral:

Evaluate based on visual impairment or, in the absence of visual impairment, on disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800).


6020 Ectropion:

Bilateral .............................................................................................................................. 20
Unilateral ............................................................................................................................ 10

6021 Entropion:

Bilateral .............................................................................................................................. 20
Unilateral ............................................................................................................................ 10

6022 Lagophthalmos:

Bilateral .............................................................................................................................. 20
Unilateral ............................................................................................................................ 10

6023 Loss of eyebrows, complete, unilateral or bilateral................................................................. 10

6024 Loss of eyelashes, complete, unilateral or bilateral................................................................. 10


6025 Disorders of the lacrimal apparatus (epiphora, dacryocystitis, etc.):

Bilateral ............................................................................................................................... 20
Unilateral ............................................................................................................................. 10

6026 Optic neuropathy:
Evaluate based on visual impairment.

6027 Cataract of any type:

Preoperative:

Evaluate based on visual impairment.

Postoperative:

If a replacement lens is present (pseudophakia), evaluate based on visual impairment. If there is no replacement lens, evaluate based on aphakia.

6029 Aphakia or dislocation of crystalline lens:

Evaluate based on visual impairment, and elevate the resulting level of visual impairment one step.
Minimum (unilateral or bilateral................................................................................................ 30

6030 Paralysis of accommodation (due to neuropathy of the Oculomotor Nerve

(cranial nerve III))................................................................................................................... 20

6032 Loss of eyelids, partial or complete:

Separately evaluate both visual impairment due to eyelid loss and nonvisual impairment, e.g., disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800), and combine the evaluations.

6034 Pterygium:

Evaluate based on visual impairment, disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800), conjunctivitis (diagnostic code 6018), etc., depending on the particular findings.

6035 Keratoconus:

Evaluate based on impairment of visual acuity.

6036 Status post corneal transplant:


Evaluate based on visual impairment.
Minimum, if there is pain, photophobia, and glare sensitivity.................................................. 10

6037 Pinguecula:

Evaluate based on disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800).

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Impairment of Central Visual Acuity

6061 Anatomical loss of both eyes1..................................................................................... 100


6062 No more than light perception in both eyes1................................................................. 100


6063 Anatomical loss of one eye:1

In the other eye 5/200 (1.5/60)...................................................................................... 100
In the other eye 10/200 (3/60)......................................................................................... 90
In the other eye 15/200 (4.5/60)...................................................................................... 80
In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 50
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 40

6064 No more than light perception in one eye:1

In the other eye 5/200 (1.5/60)...................................................................................... 100
In the other eye 10/200 (3/60)......................................................................................... 90
In the other eye 15/200 (4.5/60)...................................................................................... 80
In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 50
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 40
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 30

6065 Vision in one eye 5/200 (1.5/60):

In the other eye 5/200 (1.5/60)..................................................................................... 1100
In the other eye 10/200 (3/60)......................................................................................... 90
In the other eye 15/200 (4.5/60)...................................................................................... 80
In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 50
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 40
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 30

6066 Visual acuity in one eye 10/200 (3/60) or better:

Vision in one eye 10/200 (3/60):

In the other eye 10/200 (3/60.......................................................................................... 90
In the other eye 15/200 (4.5/60)...................................................................................... 80
In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 50
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 40
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 30

Vision in one eye 15/200 (4.5/60):

In the other eye 15/200 (4.5/60)...................................................................................... 80
In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 40
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 30
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 20

Vision in one eye 20/200 (6/60):

In the other eye 20/200 (6/60)......................................................................................... 70
In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 60
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 40
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 30
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 20

Vision in one eye 20/100 (6/30):

In the other eye 20/100 (6/30)......................................................................................... 50
In the other eye 20/70 (6/21)........................................................................................... 30
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15)........................................................................................... 20
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 10

Vision in one eye 20/70 (6/21):

In the other eye 20/70 (6/21).......................................................................................... 30
In the other eye 20/50 (6/15).......................................................................................... 20
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12).......................................................................................... 10

Vision in one eye 20/50 (6/15):

In the other eye 20/50 (6/15).......................................................................................... 10
In the other eye 20/40 (6/12).......................................................................................... 10

Vision in one eye 20/40 (6/12):

In the other eye 20/40 (6/12)........................................................................................... 0

1Review for entitlement to special monthly compensation under 38 CFR 3.350.

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Ratings for Impairment of Visual Fields


6080 Visual field defects:
Homonymous hemianopsia................................................................................................... 30

Loss of temporal half of visual field:

Bilateral......................................................................................................................... 30
Unilateral....................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/70 (6/21)

Loss of nasal half of visual field:

Bilateral......................................................................................................................... 10
Unilateral....................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/50 (6/15).

Loss of inferior half of visual field:

Bilateral......................................................................................................................... 30
Unilateral....................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/70 (6/21)

Loss of superior half of visual field:

Bilateral......................................................................................................................... 10
Unilateral....................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/50 (6/15).

Concentric contraction of visual field:

With remaining field of 5 degrees: 1

Bilateral....................................................................................................................... 100
Unilateral...................................................................................................................... 30
Or evaluate each affected eye as 5/200 (1.5/60).

With remaining field of 6 to 15 degrees:

Bilateral....................................................................................................................... 70
Unilateral..................................................................................................................... 20
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/200 (6/60).

With remaining field of 16 to 30 degrees:

Bilateral....................................................................................................................... 50
Unilateral..................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/100 (6/30).

With remaining field of 31 to 45 degrees:

Bilateral....................................................................................................................... 30
Unilateral..................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/70 (6/21).

With remaining field of 46 to 60 degrees:

Bilateral....................................................................................................................... 10
Unilateral..................................................................................................................... 10
Or evaluate each affected eye as 20/50 (6/15).

6081 Scotoma, unilateral:

Minimum, with scotoma affecting at least one-quarter of the visual field
(quadrantanopsia) or with centrally located scotoma of any size.............................................. 10

Alternatively, evaluate based on visual impairment due to scotoma, if that would result in a higher evaluation.

1Review for entitlement to special monthly compensation under 38 CFR 3.350.

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Ratings for Impairment of Muscle Function

                                                                                                       Degree         Equivalent
                                                                                                       of diplopia    visual acuity


6090 Diplopia (double vision):

(a) Central 20 degrees..................................................................................... 5/200          (1.5/60)
(b) 21 degrees to 30 degrees

(1) Down................................................................................................. 15/200         (4.5/60)
(2) Lateral.................................................................................................20/100         (6/30)
(3) Up ......................................................................................................20/70          (6/21)

(c) 31 degrees to 40 degrees

(1) Down..................................................................................................20/200         (6/60)
(2) Lateral.................................................................................................20/70           (6/21)
(3) Up ......................................................................................................20/40          (6/12)

Note: In accordance with 38 CFR 4.31, diplopia that is occasional or that is correctable with spectacles is evaluated at 0%.


6091 Symblepharon:

Evaluate based on visual impairment, lagophthalmos (diagnostic code 6022), disfigurement (diagnostic code 7800), etc., depending on the particular findings.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[43 FR 45354, Oct. 2, 1978, as amended at 73 FR 66550, Nov. 10, 2008]

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§ 4.85 Evaluation of hearing impairment.

(a) An examination for hearing impairment for VA purposes must be conducted by a state-licensed audiologist and must include a controlled speech discrimination test (Maryland CNC) and a puretone audiometry test. Examinations will be conducted without the use of hearing aids.

(b) Table VI, “Numeric Designation of Hearing Impairment Based on Puretone Threshold Average and Speech Discrimination,” is used to determine a Roman numeral designation (I through XI) for hearing impairment based on a combination of the percent of speech discrimination (horizontal rows) and the puretone threshold average (vertical columns). The Roman numeral designation is located at the point where the percentage of speech discrimination and puretone threshold average intersect.

(c) Table VIa, “Numeric Designation of Hearing Impairment Based Only on Puretone Threshold Average,” is used to determine a Roman numeral designation (I through XI) for hearing impairment based only on the puretone threshold average. Table VIa will be used when the examiner certifies that use of the speech discrimination test is not appropriate because of language difficulties, inconsistent speech discrimination scores, etc., or when indicated under the provisions of §4.86.

(d) “Puretone threshold average,” as used in Tables VI and VIa, is the sum of the puretone thresholds at 1000, 2000, 3000 and 4000 Hertz, divided by four. This average is used in all cases (including those in §4.86) to determine the Roman numeral designation for hearing impairment from Table VI or VIa.

(e) Table VII, “Percentage Evaluations for Hearing Impairment,” is used to determine the percentage evaluation by combining the Roman numeral designations for hearing impairment of each ear. The horizontal rows represent the ear having the better hearing and the vertical columns the ear having the poorer hearing. The percentage evaluation is located at the point where the row and column intersect.

(f) If impaired hearing is service-connected in only one ear, in order to determine the percentage evaluation from Table VII, the non-service-connected ear will be assigned a Roman Numeral designation for hearing impairment of I, subject to the provisions of §3.383 of this chapter.

(g) When evaluating any claim for impaired hearing, refer to §3.350 of this chapter to determine whether the veteran may be entitled to special monthly compensation due either to deafness, or to deafness in combination with other specified disabilities.

(h) Numeric tables VI, VIA*, and VII.

[52 FR 44119, Nov. 18, 1987, as amended at 64 FR 25206, May 11, 1999]

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§4.86 Exceptional patterns of hearing impairment.

(a) When the puretone threshold at each of the four specified frequencies (1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000 Hertz) is 55 decibels or more, the rating specialist will determine the Roman numeral designation for hearing impairment from either Table VI or Table VIa, whichever results in the higher numeral. Each ear will be evaluated separately.

(b) When the puretone threshold is 30 decibels or less at 1000 Hertz, and 70 decibels or more at 2000 Hertz, the rating specialist will determine the Roman numeral designation for hearing impairment from either Table VI or Table VIa, whichever results in the higher numeral. That numeral will then be elevated to the next higher Roman numeral. Each ear will be evaluated separately. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 64 FR 25209, May 11, 1999]

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§4.87 Schedule of ratings—ear.

Diseases of the Ear

Rating

6100 Hearing Loss

6200 Chronic suppurative otitis media, mastoiditis, or cholesteatoma

(or any combination):
During suppuration, or with aural polyps................................................................. 10

Note: Evaluate hearing impairment, and complications such as labyrinthitis, tinnitus, facial nerve paralysis, or bone loss of skull, separately.

6201 Chronic nonsuppurative otitis media with effusion (serous otitis media):

Rate hearing impairment

6202 Otosclerosis:

Rate hearing impairment

6204 Peripheral vestibular disorders:

Dizziness and occasional staggering........................................................................... 30
Occasional dizziness................................................................................................ 10

Note: Objective findings supporting the diagnosis of vestibular disequilibrium are required before a compensable evaluation can be assigned under this code. Hearing impairment or suppuration shall be separately rated and combined.

6205 Meniere’s syndrome (endolymphatic hydrops):

Hearing impairment with attacks of vertigo and cerebellar gait
occurring more than once weekly, with or without tinnitus......................................... 100

Hearing impairment with attacks of vertigo and cerebellar gait
occurring from one to four times a month, with or without tinnitus.............................. 60

Hearing impairment with vertigo less than once a month, with or
without tinnitus....................................................................................................... 30

Note: Evaluate Meniere’s syndrome either under these criteria or by separately evaluating vertigo (as a peripheral vestibular disorder), hearing impairment, and tinnitus, whichever method results in a higher overall evaluation. But do not combine an evaluation for hearing impairment, tinnitus, or vertigo with an evaluation under diagnostic code 6205.

6207 Loss of auricle:

Complete loss of both............................................................................................... 50
Complete loss of one................................................................................................ 30
Deformity of one, with loss of one-third or more of the substance................................ 10

6208 Malignant neoplasm of the ear (other than skin only)............................................... 100

Note: A rating of 100 percent shall continue beyond the cessation of any surgical, radiation treatment, antineoplastic chemotherapy or other therapeutic procedure. Six months after discontinuance of such treatment, the appropriate disability rating shall be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based on that or any subsequent examination shall be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. If there has been no local recurrence or metastasis, rate on residuals.

6209 Benign neoplasms of the ear (other than skin only):

Rate on impairment of function.

6210 Chronic otitis externa:

Swelling, dry and scaly or serous discharge, and itching
requiring frequent and prolonged treatment............................................................................ 10

6211 Tympanic membrane, perforation of...........................,.................................................. 0

6260 Tinnitus, recurrent....................................................................................................... 10

Note (1): A separate evaluation for tinnitus may be combined with an evaluation under diagnostic codes 6100, 6200, 6204, or other diagnostic code, except when tinnitus supports an evaluation under one of those diagnostic codes.

Note (2): Assign only a single evaluation for recurrent tinnitus, whether the sound is perceived in one ear, both ears, or in the head.

Note (3): Do not evaluate objective tinnitus (in which the sound is audible to other people and has a definable cause that may or may not be pathologic) under this diagnostic code, but evaluate it as part of any underlying condition causing it.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155).

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 64 FR 25209, May 11, 1999; 68 FR 25823, May 14, 2003]

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§4.87a Schedule of ratings—other sense organs.

Rating

6275 Sense of smell, complete loss.......................................................................................... 10

6276 Sense of taste, complete loss........................................................................................... 10

Note: Evaluation will be assigned under diagnostic codes 6275 or 6276 only if there is an anatomical or pathological basis for the condition.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155)

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 41 FR 11298, Mar. 18, 1976. Redesig­nated at 52 FR 44119, Nov. 18, 1987; 59 FR 677, Jan. 6, 1994; 64 FR 25210, May 11, 1999]

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Infectious Diseases, Immune Disorders and Nutritional Deficiencies

§4.88a Chronic fatigue syndrome.

(a) For VA purposes, the diagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome requires:

(1) New onset of debilitating fatigue severe enough to reduce daily activity to less than 50 percent of the usual level for at least six months; and

(2) The exclusion, by history, physical examination, and laboratory tests, of all other clinical conditions that may produce similar symptoms; and

(3) Six or more of the following:

(i) Acute onset of the condition,

(ii) Low grade fever,

(iii) Nonexudative pharyngitis,

(iv) Palpable or tender cervical or axillary lymph nodes,

(v) Generalized muscle aches or weakness,

(vi) Fatigue lasting 24 hours or longer after exercise,

(vii) Headaches (of a type, severity, or pattern that is different from headaches in the pre-morbid state),

(viii) Migratory joint pains,

(ix) Neuropsychologic symptoms,

(x) Sleep disturbance.

[59 FR 60902, Nov. 29, 1994, and 60 FR 37012, July 19, 1995]

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§4.88b Schedule of ratings-infectious diseases, immune disorders and nutritional deficiencies.

Rating

6300 Cholera, Asiatic:

As active disease, and for 3 months convalescence .............................................. 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as renal necrosis under the appropriate system.

6301 Visceral Leishmaniasis:

During treatment for active disease ...................................................................... 100

Note: A 100 percent evaluation shall continue beyond the cessation of treatment for active disease. Six months after discontinuance of such treatment, the appropriate disability rating shall be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based upon that or any subsequent examination shall be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. Rate residuals such as liver damage or lymphadenopathy under the appropriate system.

6302 Leprosy (Hansen’s Disease):

As active disease ............................................................................................... 100

Note: A 100 percent evaluation shall continue beyond the date that an examining physician has determined that this has become inactive. Six months after the date of inactivity, the appropriate disability rating shall be determined by mandatory VA examination. Any change in evaluation based upon that or any subsequent examination shall be subject to the provisions of §3.105(e) of this chapter. Rate residuals such as skin lesions or peripheral neuropathy under the appropriate system.

6304 Malaria:

As active disease ............................................................................................... 100

Note: The diagnosis of malaria depends on the identification of the malarial parasites in blood smears. If the veteran served in an endemic area and presents signs and symptoms compatible with malaria, the diagnosis may be based on clinical grounds alone. Relapses must be confirmed by the presence of malarial parasites in blood smears.

Thereafter rate residuals such as liver or spleen damage under the appropriate system.

6305 Lymphatic Filariasis:

As active disease .............................................................................................. 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as epididymitis or lymphangitis under the appropriate system.

6306 Bartonellosis:

As active disease, and for 3 months convalescence ............................................. 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as skin lesions under the appropriate system.

6307 Plague:

As active disease ............................................................................................ 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as lymphadenopathy under the appropriate system.

6308 Relapsing Fever:

As active disease ........................................................................................... 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as liver or spleen damage or central nervous system involvement under the appropriate system.

6309 Rheumatic fever:

As active disease .......................................................................................... 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as heart damage under the appropriate system.

6310 Syphilis, and other treponemal infections:

Rate the complications of nervous system, vascular system, eyes or ears.

(See DC 7004, syphilitic heart disease, DC 8013, cerebrospinal syphilis,
DC 8014, meningovascular syphilis, DC 8015, tabes dorsalis, and
DC 9301, dementia associated with central nervous system syphilis).

6311 Tuberculosis, miliary:

As active disease .......................................................................................... 100

Inactive: See §§4.88c and 4.89.

6313 Avitaminosis:

Marked mental changes, moist dermatitis, inability to retain
adequate nourishment, exhaustion, and cachexia ............................................. 100

With all of the symptoms listed below, plus mental symptoms and
impaired bodily vigor ...................................................................................... 60

With stomatitis, diarrhea, and symmetrical dermatitis ......................................... 40

With stomatitis, or achlorhydria, or diarrhea ................................................. .... 20

Confirmed diagnosis with nonspecific symptoms such as: decreased
appetite, weight loss, abdominal discomfort, weakness, inability
to concentrate and irritability ............................................................................ 10

6314 Beriberi:
As active disease:

With congestive heart failure, anasarca, or
Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome ....................................................................... 100

With cardiomegaly, or; with peripheral neuropathy with footdrop or
atrophy of thigh or calf muscles ....................................................................... 60

With peripheral neuropathy with absent knee or ankle jerks and
loss of sensation, or; with symptoms such as weakness, fatigue,
anorexia, dizziness, heaviness and stiffness of legs, headache or
sleep disturbance............................................................................................. 30

Thereafter rate residuals under the appropriate body system.

6315 Pellagra:

Marked mental changes, moist dermatitis, inability to retain
adequate nourishment, exhaustion, and cachexia ............................................... 100

With all of the symptoms listed below, plus mental symptoms and
impaired bodily vigor ........................................................................................ 60

With stomatitis, diarrhea, and symmetrical dermatitis ........................................... 40

With stomatitis, or achlorhydria, or diarrhea ........................................................ 20

Confirmed diagnosis with nonspecific symptoms such as: decreased
appetite, weight loss, abdominal discomfort, weakness, inability
to concentrate and irritability .............................................................................. 10

6316 Brucellosis:

As active disease ............................................................................................... 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as liver or spleen damage or meningitis under the appropriate system.

6317 Typhus, scrub

As active disease, and for 3 months convalescence ............................................... 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as spleen damage or skin conditions under the appropriate system.

6318 Melioidosis:

As active disease ................................................................................................ 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as arthritis, lung lesions or meningitis under the appropriate system.

6319 Lyme Disease:

As active disease ................................................................................................ 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as arthritis under the appropriate system.

6320 Parasitic diseases otherwise not specified:

As active disease ................................................................................................ 100

Thereafter rate residuals such as spleen or liver damage under the appropriate system.

6350 Lupus erythematosus, systemic (disseminated) (SLE):

Not to be combined with ratings under DC 7809.

Acute, with frequent exacerbations, producing severe impairment
of health ........................................................................................................... 100

Exacerbations lasting a week or more, 2 or 3 times per year .................................... 60

Exacerbations once or twice a year or symptomatic during the
past 2 years......................................................................................................... 10

Note: Evaluate this condition either by combining the evaluations for residuals under the appropriate system, or by evaluating DC 6350, whichever method results in a higher evaluation.

6351 HIV-Related Illness:

AIDS with recurrent opportunistic infections or with secondary
diseases afflicting multiple body systems; HIV-related illness
with debility and progressive weight loss, without remission,
or few or brief remissions ................................................................................ 100

Refractory constitutional symptoms, diarrhea, and pathological weight
loss, or; minimum rating following development of AIDS-related
opportunistic infection or neoplasm .................................................................... 60

Recurrent constitutional symptoms, intermittent diarrhea, and on
approved medication(s), or; minimum rating with T4 cell count less
than 200, or Hairy Cell Leukoplakia, or Oral Candidiasis ..................................... 30

Following development of definite medical symptoms, T4 cell of 200 or
more and less than 500, and on approved medication(s), or; with
evidence of depression or memory loss with employment limitations .................... 10

Asymptomatic, following initial diagnosis of HIV infection, with or
without lymphadenopathy or decreased T4 cell count............................................ 0

Note (1): The term “approved medication(s)” includes medications prescribed as part of a research protocol at an accredited medical institution.

Note (2): Psychiatric or central nervous system manifestations, opportunistic infections, and neoplasms may be rated separately under appropriate codes if higher overall evaluation results, but not in combination with percentages otherwise assignable above.

6354 Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS):

Debilitating fatigue, cognitive impairments (such as inability to
concentrate, forgetfulness, confusion), or a combination of other
signs and symptoms:

Which are nearly constant and so severe as to restrict routine
daily activities almost completely and which may occasionally
preclude self-care ....................................................................................... 100

Which are nearly constant and restrict routine daily activities
to less than 50 percent of the pre-illness level, or; which
wax and wane, resulting in periods of incapacitation of at least
six weeks total duration per year ................................................................... 60

Which are nearly constant and restrict routine daily activities to
50 to 75 percent of the pre-illness level, or; which wax and wane,
resulting in periods of incapacitation of at least four but less
than six weeks total duration per year ............................................................ 40

Which are nearly constant and restrict routine daily activities by
less than 25 percent of the pre-illness level, or; which wax and
wane, resulting in periods of incapacitation of at least two but less
than four weeks total duration per year .......................................................... 20

Which wax and wane but result in periods of incapacitation of at
least one but less than two weeks total duration per year, or;
symptoms controlled by continuous medication ............................................... 10

Note: For the purpose of evaluating this disability, the condition will be considered incapacitating only while it requires bed rest and treatment by a physician.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 41 FR 11300, Mar. 18, 1976; 43 FR 45361, Oct. 2, 1978; 54 FR 4281, Jan. 30, 1989; 54 FR 10482, Mar. 13, 1989; 57 FR 10136, Mar. 24, 1992; 59 FR 677, Jan. 6, 1994. Redesignated and amended at 59 FR 60902, Nov. 29, 1994, and 60 FR 37012, July 19, 1995; 61 FR 39875, July 31, 1996]

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§4.88c Ratings for inactive nonpulmonary tuberculosis initially entitled after August 19, 1968.

Rating

For 1 year after date of inactivity, following active tuberculosis................................. 100

Thereafter: Rate residuals under the specific body system or systems affected.

Following the total rating for the 1 year period after date of inactivity, the schedular evaluation for residuals of nonpulmonary tuberculosis, i.e., ankylosis, surgical removal of a part, etc., will be assigned under the appropriate diagnostic code for the residual preceded by the diagnostic code for tuberculosis of the body part affected. For example, tuberculosis of the hip joint with residual ankylosis would be coded 5001-5250. Where there are existing residuals of pulmonary and nonpulmonary conditions, the evaluations for residual separate functional impairment may be combined.

Where there are existing pulmonary and nonpulmonary conditions, the total rating for the 1 year, after attainment of inactivity, may not be applied to both conditions during the same period. However, the total rating during the 1-year period for the pulmonary or for the nonpulmonary condition will be utilized, combined with evaluation for residuals of the condition not covered by the 1-year total evaluation, so as to allow any additional benefit provided during such period.

[34 FR 5062, Mar. 11, 1969. Redesignated at 59 FR 60902, Nov. 29, 1994, and 60 FR 37012, July 19, 1995]

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§4.89 Ratings for inactive nonpulmonary tuberculosis in effect on August 19, 1968.

Public Law 90-493 repealed section 1156 of title 38, United States Code which provided graduated ratings for inactive tuberculosis. The repealed section, however, still applies to the case of any veteran who on August 19, 1968, was receiving or entitled to receive compensation for tuberculosis. The use of the protective provisions of Pub. L. 90-493 should be mentioned in the discussion portion of all ratings in which these provisions are applied. For use in rating cases in which the protective provisions of Pub. L. 90-493 apply, the former evaluations are retained in this section.

Rating

For 2 years after date of inactivity, following active tuberculosis,
which was clinically identified during service or subsequently.................................... 100
Thereafter, for 4 years, or in any event, to 6 years after date of inactivity................... 50
Thereafter, for 5 years, or to 11 years after date of inactivity..................................... 30
Thereafter, in the absence of a schedular compensable permanent residual................... 0

Following the total rating for the 2-year period after date of inactivity, the schedular evaluation for residuals of nonpulmonary tuberculosis, i.e., ankylosis, surgical removal of a part, etc., if in excess of 50 percent or 30 percent will be assigned under the appropriate diagnostic code for the specific residual preceded by the diagnostic code for tuberculosis of the body part affected. For example, tuberculosis of the hipjoint with residual ankylosis would be coded 5001-5250.

The graduated ratings for nonpulmonary tuberculosis will not be combined with residuals of nonpulmonary tuberculosis unless the graduated rating and the rating for residual disability cover separate functional losses, e.g., graduated ratings for tuberculosis of the kidney and residuals of tuberculosis of the spine. Where there are existing pulmonary and nonpulmonary conditions, the graduated evaluation for the pulmonary, or for the nonpulmonary, condition will be utilized, combined with evaluations for residuals of the condition not covered by the graduated evaluation utilized, so as to provide the higher evaluation over such period.

The ending dates of all graduated ratings of nonpulmonary tuberculosis will be controlled by the date of attainment of inactivity.

These ratings are applicable only to veterans with nonpulmonary tuberculosis active on or after October 10, 1949.

[29 FR 6718, May 22, 1964, as amended at 34 FR 5062, Mar. 11, 1969; 43 FR 45361, Oct. 2, 1978]

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