A young man suffering from stomachache near the wall

VA’s New Digestive Disorders Rating: What Veterans Need to Know

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently announced significant updates to the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD), with a particular focus on conditions affecting the digestive system. These updates, which adjust the rating criteria for 55 medical conditions, aim to incorporate the latest medical advancements and insights, potentially leading to more accurate compensation for veterans. While these changes are a step in the right direction, it’s essential to critically assess which aspects will have the most substantial impact on veterans’ lives and where there may still be room for improvement.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and stay up to date.

Key Changes and Their Impact on Veterans

The VA has introduced major updates for celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and hemorrhoids, each with the potential to affect veterans’ disability ratings and, consequently, their quality of life.

  • Celiac Disease Adjustments

The establishment of specific rating criteria for celiac disease, moving evaluations from a 0-30 percent range to up to 80 percent, represents a significant improvement. This change acknowledges the severe impact celiac disease can have on an individual’s daily life and work capability. However, it will be crucial to monitor how these new criteria are applied in practice to ensure veterans receive the compensation commensurate with their disability’s severity.

  • IBS Evaluation Update

The revised criteria for IBS, which introduce a broader range of evaluations (10, 20, or 30 percent), attempt to provide a more nuanced approach to rating this condition. While this is a positive development, the effectiveness of these changes will depend on their implementation and the VA’s ability to accurately assess the condition’s impact on veterans’ lives.

  • Hemorrhoids Rating Criteria

The updated criteria for hemorrhoids, which now allow for a 10 percent evaluation for mild or moderate cases, offer a slight improvement. This adjustment acknowledges the discomfort and complications associated with hemorrhoids but may not fully capture the condition’s impact on a veteran’s daily functioning.

Looking Forward: The VA’s Commitment to Veterans

The VA states that these updates are part of a broader effort to align the rating system more closely with the realities of veterans’ disabilities. This intention is commendable, but the true measure of these changes will be seen in their application and the extent to which they enhance veterans’ lives.

Veterans’ Ratings: Stability and Potential for Improvement

The assurance that no veteran’s current rating will be adversely affected by these updates is a crucial safeguard. However, this stance also highlights the importance of proactive measures to ensure that veterans are aware of and can access avenues for potential rating increases under the new criteria.

The Path Ahead: Further Reforms Needed

While the VA’s updates to the digestive system ratings are a positive step, continuous evaluation and feedback from the veteran community will be essential. It’s important to advocate for ongoing reforms that address any gaps or shortcomings in the new criteria, ensuring that all veterans receive the fair and accurate compensation they deserve.

An Ongoing Journey

The VA’s recent updates to the digestive system disability ratings represent progress in the right direction, reflecting an ongoing commitment to improving veterans’ compensation. However, as with any reform, the true impact will depend on its implementation and the continued push for a system that fully recognizes and compensates for the sacrifices of our veterans.


What is VASRD?

The VASRD is the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities, a system the VA uses to rate the severity of veterans’ service-connected conditions, affecting their compensation. It ranges from 0% to 100% and is periodically updated.

What specific conditions have seen updates in their rating criteria under the new changes?

The VA has made significant updates to the rating criteria for 55 medical conditions related to the digestive system, with celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and hemorrhoids receiving the most notable changes. These adjustments aim to provide more accurate and fair compensation based on the latest medical knowledge and treatment advancements.

How will the new rating criteria for celiac disease benefit veterans?

Under the new criteria, celiac disease now has a dedicated rating range from 0 to 80 percent, acknowledging the variable and potentially severe impact of the disease on an individual’s health and ability to work. This change is designed to offer more precise compensation to veterans affected by celiac disease, potentially leading to increased disability ratings for some.

What are the improvements in the evaluation of IBS for veterans?

The VA has revised the evaluation criteria for IBS to include ratings of 10, 20, or 30 percent, based on the frequency and severity of symptoms. This update aims to more accurately reflect the impact of IBS on a veteran’s daily life and work, providing a structure that can accommodate a wider range of symptom presentations and severities.

Can veterans expect an automatic re-evaluation of their current rating under the new criteria?

No, veterans will not automatically be re-evaluated under the new criteria. However, those who believe the updates may positively affect their disability rating are encouraged to apply for an increase in compensation. The VA has stated that no current ratings will be decreased solely based on the application of the new criteria.

How can veterans apply for a re-evaluation or increase in disability compensation under the new rating criteria?

Veterans interested in seeking a re-evaluation or an increase in their disability compensation should visit the VA’s official website or contact their local VA office for guidance on the application process. It’s advisable to gather any relevant medical documentation or evidence that supports the impact of their condition under the new rating criteria before applying.

Similar Posts

One Comment

  1. I’m all for UBI but how the hell is gastro illness compensatable? How does service cause stomach issues? I’m probably ignorant on the issue. All the more reason to just cut the shit and give every veteran $2000 a month for life.

Comments are closed.