3rd Period of LIMDU for same injury. MO doesn't want to put me on a MEB.

Swerve0311

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Good morning Ladies and Gents, I come seeking guidance.

Background: I'm an Infantry Sgt with almost 8 years TIS. In 2017-2018 I was on two periods of LIMDU for low back pain (degenerative L5-S1 disc) and hip pain (labral tear). While on LIMDU I had a hip arthroscopy to repair the labral tear. My hip pain and back pain improved and I was returned to full duty. Fast forward to 2019, while working up for our deployment my back pain returned and increased in intensity. I went to BAS, received medication, and deployed towards the end of 2019. When we returned from deployment in 2020, my back condition was getting worse and I sought medical attention. I was put in for physical therapy, pain management and received a new MRI. My new MRI shows that my L5-S1 disc is still degenerated, and is herniated with an extrusion. My L4-L5 is also herniated. On 1 December 2020 a 3rd period of LIMDU was initiated for me, and HQMC approved it.

My LIMDU proposed end date is 1 June 2021 and my EAS is 19 June 2021. The current treatment plan of Mobic, Lidocaine patches, physical therapy and pain management hasn't been successful. I'll be in ITX from the end of March to mid-May where treatment won't be available to me. Should I be referred to a MEB? My MO's current course of action is to return me to full duty before my EAS, have me EAS, and let the VA handle care from there. I've talked to a few people currently in the IDES process, and a few former senior enlisted leaders, and they think that I should've been referred to a MEB instead of a 3rd period of LIMDU. They also feel that I'm being cheated out of the potential benefits of medical separation/retirement as apposed to normal EAS'ing. Can I be returned to full duty for EAS purposes if I'm not medically fit for duty? Is there anyone or place that I can contact outside of my unit for guidance if I don't think that I'm being properly cared for?

Thank you in advance for any help.
 

Swerve0311

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
What do you want to happen and why?
I want to receive proper care and compensation if I rate it. I have very little confidence in my provider and his current plan of action (return me to full duty just to EAS). I've spent a majority of the day researching the MARCORPS Sep Manual, NAVMED's and MANMED. From what I've gathered, I don't think his plan of action is the right one.
 

chaplaincharlie

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The challenge is the PEB is initiated by medics, not the member. If you remain on LIMDU, DoD policy is that you be sent to the MEB. The emphasis on the DoD folks being ready to deploy.
 

Swerve0311

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
The challenge is the PEB is initiated by medics, not the member. If you remain on LIMDU, DoD policy is that you be sent to the MEB. The emphasis on the DoD folks being ready to deploy.
Thank you for this insight. I had a follow-up this week. He put in a referral to orthopedics, but plans on returning me to full duty at the end of my LIMDU period. He said I passed his "Starbucks" test, which means I'm able to work a job like Starbucks when I get out and will be fit for duty for EAS purposes.
 

chaplaincharlie

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His Starbucks test is not how the military works. The question for the PEB is can you perform in your current position. The military has no "Starbucks test. You may want to request a new PCM via the hospital ombudsman/patient advocate.
 

Swerve0311

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
His Starbucks test is not how the military works. The question for the PEB is can you perform in your current position. The military has no "Starbucks test. You may want to request a new PCM via the hospital ombudsman/patient advocate.
I agree. I think that I almost had a stroke when he said "Starbucks" test. As long as my orthopedics referral isn't deferred off base, they should be able to provide some help for the situation. I was also told by a Marine who's PEB was accepted that I should contact the Wounded Warrior Battalion Call Center and see if they can be of any assistance.
 

chaplaincharlie

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Absolutely, contact the WWB. Use every resource. I would definitely request a new PCM.
 
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