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conv leave

bspangler47's picture
bspangler47
Posts: 140
Joined: Sep 2010

I am currently in remission from colorectal cancer. And am active duty. I have been on conv leave since last March due to the complications I was having. From what I read the conv leave could be extended as needed. My command is telling me know that I am headed for a medical board that I was only entitled to 45 days. Any information would be appreciated.

HAWVET's picture
HAWVET
Posts: 318
Joined: Apr 2006

I do hope someone in this forum can answer your question, but I doubt it. This area is seldom visited. I can only offer you an opinion with my long time association and service with the United States Army.

I am looking at this from a command perspective. You had completed your treatment over six months ago and want to continue on convalescent leave. This seems excessive to grant you continued off time. If you were working for a civilian employer, you would only be entitled to sick or regular vacation time, then leave without pay.

The military’s authorized strength today is not adequate to fulfill their worldwide obligations. Soldiers have returned to Iraq and Afghanistan for several tours of duty.

I would think the best alternative after six months is to refer you to a Medical Evaluation Board. They will determine whether you could properly rehabilitate and can continue on active duty. If you are medically discharged, then the unit can have another soldier as a replacement.

Being medically discharged would entitle you for medical care either at a military hospital or with the Veterans Administration.

MarineE5
Posts: 745
Joined: Dec 2005

HAWVET,

I was hoping that you would venture down to this section of the site and answer this question. I figured that you would have the answer. I venture down here once in awhile to see what is going on and try to respond if I can. Things have changed since we were in many years ago.

HAWVET's picture
HAWVET
Posts: 318
Joined: Apr 2006

I do not visit as often since my cancer was a while ago and there are so many new things that I am lost. I like to visit this area to help a veteran if I can provide an answer. I was career Army (enlisted type) and my last 10 years was sort of being an advisor for our soldiers.

My final Army assignment was actually at Marine Base Camp Foster in Okinawa. I forgot to thank you for the email you sent. It would have been helpful if I had that information before I lost my appeal.

For now, I decided not to resubmit the claim. I am on the Army retiree payrolls, have a 10 percent rating so my medical care can be either with the VA or TRICARE. My primary physician is now our local VA doctor. We only have a VA clinic so if I need immediate medical help, I use the civilian medical facilities.

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 2739
Joined: May 2009

This is no easy answer, it's all about what cancer stage you are in, what your side effects are, what your job is......medical board to me sounds reasonable if you are in remission, but if you are stage 1V and you are a bomb loader, that may be grounds for separation and military benefits. You do need to talk to your unit.

webozo's picture
webozo
Posts: 82
Joined: Feb 2010

the only thing i know about conv leave is that when my son broke his legs they sent him home for conv leave he was here for al most 3 months and i took care of him he went back to his unit and is fullfilling his cotract of cousre it was a injury he got while in training so it could be different. they did not ever talk about a discharge he did go before the medcial board before he came home and they set up his doctors here and his treatment. he came home in a wheel chair and went back on strong legs. i don't know if this has helped you but i hope for the best for you. and thank you

bspangler47's picture
bspangler47
Posts: 140
Joined: Sep 2010

Thanks for all the advice. I was extended on conv leave due to alot of complications related to have Colorectal Cancer stage 3. had a total of 7 surgeries within a yr. I now weigh 87 lbs. And to be honest I wear diapers until my bowel movements are controlled alittle bit better. I know have a blockage in my right kidney due to the surgeries and radiation I had. I am going thru a medical board due to the cancer. I have a total of 25 yrs in the reserves but 16 yrs on AFS with the United States Army. I am okay about being medically retired. Thanks again for the advice.

sonja123's picture
sonja123
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2010

I am also Active duty and in remission from colorectal cancer. My conv leave lasted 1yr during my treatments and surgeries. (i just returned to work this week) While doing chemo they did not want me to work because the chances of catching anything such as virus, with a weak immune. your conv leave can be extended indef as long as your doc requests it. I am also up for Medical board but going up for a medical board has nothing to do with Conv. leave. As long as your under a doctors care the military will honor his/her requests for staying home during recovery.

I hope this helps, best wishes with your recovery!!

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

I know im late getting into this discussion

conv leave can go on indefinatly as long as medical wants it to keep going

myself i am in a diffrnet boat I am less than a year from retiring and been put at a desk job with very little responsibility so i can make my medical apointments..

now here is the other boat part, I may not be able to retire when i want to because they may medicaly extend me past my 20 year point untill they are sure they got this cancer gone (thyroid cancer btw).

so for me its do i retire September 2011 or will i be in the military longer till they decide they can retire me and work past my 20 year point as an E-6

I also know another person who is stage 4 non-hodgkins and has been past his retirement on basicaly conveslesnt leave for 1+ years now.

best wishes and good luck

HAWVET's picture
HAWVET
Posts: 318
Joined: Apr 2006

My first response was based on Bspangler comments and that he was in remission. My assumption was that he was no longer under treatment, but back for duty with his unit. There is a difference on the number of days of convalescent leave that a Commander can grant. That 45 days mentioned seems like the correct figure.

The Commander’s alternative is to refer the individual to a medical board. In other words, the Commander is seeking the advice of the professionals to determine the status of the individual.

Based on Nasher's comments, I believe he and the person he knew are/were both under the care of a physician. It may have been outpatient type treatment. The person with the non-hodgkins disease was probably given extended convalescent leave by a physician and not from the commander.

These are just my thoughts since we do not not know the full circumstances of the case.

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

yes and no

yes i am under the care of a physician and working some.

right now im not in treatment so i am working full time (with lots of medical apointments) and the doctors normaly give con leave at a 14 day at a time shot then they see you again and make there next plan

another trick they can do (or have in some of my friends case) is give you 14 con then 14 light duty then reevaluate and give you more con leave.

It is amazing how many people you find are haveing cancer issues once you start dealing with it yourself.

bspangler47's picture
bspangler47
Posts: 140
Joined: Sep 2010

I dont get on the site very often. But wanted to give an update regarding the conv leave. I was able to stay on it and still have about 2 more weeks left. I went for a medical board with the US Army. On 11 April 2011 I will be medically retired with disability from the Army. I have been in and out of the hospital the last several months due to urinary tract infections and something called c-diff. As of now I still wear diapers until I can control my bowels somewhat better. I have another urinary infection and the medication they have me on isnt working. So my dr (oncoglist) just called me tonight 2 let me know I have to take something else. I have 2 stints in my uretha(sp) due to my kidneys/bladder not draining right. While at the appt last week he drew blood and ran the test for CEA, tumor marker. He said the tumor marker is within the normal limits, but alittle high, which he didnt expect it to be that way. He believes its that way because of the c diff I have had. I had CT scans and Xrays the last few months while being in the hospital and nothing showed up. So now I am alittle concerned.

Thank you

Barbara
Spangler_barbara@hotmail.com

PS does anyone have any receipes for chicken or fish. Running out of ways to cook them without frying etc.

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

sucks

yes c-deff sounds annoying
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Definition By Mayo Clinic staff

Clostridium difficile (klos-TRID-e-uhm dif-uh-SEEL), often called C. difficile or C. diff, is a bacterium that can cause symptoms ranging from diarrhea to life-threatening inflammation of the colon. Illness from C. difficile most commonly affects older adults in hospitals or in long term care facilities and typically occurs after use of antibiotic medications.

In recent years, C. difficile infections have become more frequent, more severe and more difficult to treat. Each year, tens of thousands of people in the United States get sick from C. difficile, including some otherwise healthy people who aren't hospitalized or taking antibiotics.

Mild illness caused by C. difficile may get better if you stop taking antibiotics. Severe symptoms require treatment with a different antibiotic.

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I would be concerned too and try to figure everything out

good luck and keep us informed

Craig

bspangler47's picture
bspangler47
Posts: 140
Joined: Sep 2010

Thanks Craig. So far this month had 1 minor flair up. I am doing better now with the Cdiff. I hope it stays that way. :)

I have finally have been medically retired from the US Army. Neer thought this would be the way I would retire. And have already filed a claim with the VA. Where I live there is a pilot program where you can submit your claim 90 days before you leave the military.

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