Question for one of you experts on the 8 year rule

Routeclearanceguy92355

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Active army, 15 years in service, deployment to OIF and Afghanistan. Question i have is I have read up some on this "8 year rule" and wonder if it applies to me. Ill keep the basic facts as short as possible and any feedback would help.

When I was 13 I was involuntarily hospitalized for 3 weeks after a breakdown at school in which I trashed the front office. I had some follow up counseling but was never diagnosed with anything nor given any medications that I know of except when I was hospitalized. Fast foward to today and the psych is thinking I have a mood disorder after placing me on sertraline and I became manic and that this hospitalization may have been the first manifestation of it. He has held off on placing in into my med records because he told me it will end my military career and has prescribed med's (seroquel-listed for sleep) and topamax-for migraines which on research are also sometimes used as non typical mood treatments. Back to the point, psych says he can keep this under wraps for awhile but should I have to deploy again he may have no choice but to officially diagnose me. My question is will this hospitalization that happened 20 years ago mean that the whole thing will be said to existed prior to service or will the 8 year rule cover me?
 

tony292

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First of all does your current psych know about the issue when you were 13? If not best to keep that under wraps or it will likely be classified by the peb existing prior to service.

Secondly, it is well known to psychs that SSRIs such as sertraline can easily put an even mildly bipolar person into full blown mania. That sounds like what may have happened to you. I was MEBd for depression/anxiety and know that the VA knows that I've been tried on nearly every SSRI with no or worsening effects, they have put me on a mood stabilizer, depakote that has been a godsend. They are also looking at bipolar II as a possible new diagnosis.

My advice, keep the stuff at age 13 to yourself. Try and steer your current doc to a mood stabilizer and see if that helps. Also since you have so many years in, I would lean on your branch manager to see if you can get a non deploying job for a couple of years like tradoc or usarec or the super easy one ROTC. Different kind of stress but non deploying.
 
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Routeclearanceguy92355

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Well the therapist (a social worker does) but so far she told me she has not put that in her notes but I never know who to trust so I am just assuming it is already there for the worst. The psychiatrist who prescribes the meds does not know about the hospitalization and his description is that I have a "cyclical mood disorder" but he is treating that but has not officially diagnosed cyclothymia or bipolar as of yet. His exact words is he doesnt want to throw away my 15 years so we will doas much as we can to treat without raising red flags. I am just concerned if for some reason it becomes known and a med board is initiated will it even be considered as honestly I truly only care about being treated and living as normal a life as can be. Thanks for your advice tony much appreciated
 

gsfowler

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The condition would fall under the "8 year rule". What I am concerned about is the desire to diagnose you with a mood disorder.

If you are being treated, you must be diagnosed with something. The bottom line is that you cannot be treated unless there is medical necessity. To show medical necessity, there must be a diagnosis.

You need to pull the records to see what it is.
 

Routeclearanceguy92355

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On my bluebutton online the conditions listed are post concussion syndrome (2012) delayed post traumatic stress disorder (2012) adjustment disorder (2015) Anxiety disorder unspecified (2016). The seroquel was just started along with topamax 2 weeks ago after the psych on my 3 month follow up on sertraline thinks I was hypomanic
 

Routeclearanceguy92355

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Gsfowler thank you that puts my mind at ease. I know now that for the most effective treatment I haveto be completely open an honest with the providers about past history but its still hard to get over that i have kept it secret and hidden for a long time till it started spinning out of control
 
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