Medical Question re: ROTC

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by cb7893, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    DS is HS senior. He has applied for NROTC scholarship. We feel reasonably confident he will win one, but maybe not to his first choice school, out of state high dollar public.

    Two weeks ago he was hit in the eye with a soccer ball at school. (Once a week, his weight training class plays some sort of high cardio game.) We took him to MD within an hour. The doc saw some damage, but nothing requiring immediate treatment.

    Went in for follow-up this AM. Eyesight is 20/15 in both eyes. However, Doc says there is some retina detachment, requiring monthly check-ups, zero contact sports(no ice hockey or lax in spring), and surgery at an appropriate time (10-12 months hence). Doc also said surgery will permanently repair damage.

    Is he hosed?
     
  2. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Oh no!!! I doubt anyone here can really say unless they've had the same experience. You might have better luck speaking to cadre or maybe speaking with a doc familiar with the DoDMERB process or military stuff. I would expect this to come up during his physical if/when he is awarded a scholarship. Just be prepared to go through the waiver process. He could very well be hosed for at least next year as I expect surgery will put him out of commission for a while.. and I'm not sure how PT will play into this prior to the surgery... but this is all conjecture on my part based on my experience in high school biology.

    I also find myself wondering, why the wait on the surgery. :confused: Maybe the wait is to give it a chance to heal on its own. I'd get a second opinion from someone who is familiar with the ROTC issues he'll be facing if that's possible. I certainly wouldn't proceed with any surgery until you have DoDMERB feedback on it. Perhaps some particular surgical approach is allowed while another is not or something. Also, perhaps if surgery is done soon enough to allow for recovery time it may all be good. I know, I know... I'm preaching to the choir. I'm so sorry about this injury :frown: and do hope it all works out. Please keep us posted.
     
  3. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Kinnem,

    When you said speak to cadre, would that mean enrollment officer at 1st choice or any competent NROTC person?

    Hastening the surgery was my thought as well. I got the news third hand from DW who got it from DS. I'll speak to him today, do my homework and go to his next appointment in two weeks loaded for bear, with questions that is.

    This is really tough. He has always dealt with adversity with equal measures of calm and equanimity. He is like a cross between Joe Friday and the Dalai Lama. He is so deliberate in his decisionmaking that the path he chooses is always wide and open. This is different.
     
  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Well, actually any knowledgeable source you can rely on. Not too many folks understand this ROTC DoDMERB stuff so cadre, any cadre, is what came to mind for me. But ROO at 1st choice might be a good person to contact. OTOH ROO at last choice might be better and do just as well. I'm naive and always expect the best of people but perhaps it would be wiser not to raise red flags at first choice. You would know better having some level of knowledge about the ROO. But you certainly need to work with someone knowledgeable about all this, unless someone steps forward here. The doctor himself may be able to recommend someone he knows who is knowledgeable about the ROTC/military issues.
     
  5. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Kinnem,

    Just talked to DS.

    Retina is detached. He goes in for examination next week and periodically after that. They essentially wait until it tears, at which time they perform laser surgery.

    I asked DS when the doc thought that might be. His answer: "When I start going blind in my right eye, he told me to call the office." That's the Joe Friday part. Just the facts Ma'am.

    Bottomline, his eye and vision will be fine. His right eye will degenerate (as do all of our eyes over time) differently than his left.

    Any input prior to next week's appointment would be appreciated. I want to know the right questions to ask and how to ask them.

    He is particularly disapponted about Lacrosse. He called his coach and discussed helping as an assistant coach. That's the Dalai Lama part.
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Sounds like a great kid. Wish I has something more that I could add but high school biology only goes so far.
     
  7. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Sorry to waste everyone's time. I just discovered the DODMERB discussion board.
     
  8. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    Here is what is going to happen. The first step of the DODMERB process is to fill out your medical history. You will obviously have to document the injury. When you go to the physical the doc who conducts the physical will annotate the injury. This may be a disqualifier. There may also be what is called a remedial, where DODMERB asks for more information. I'm betting DODMERB will straight up disqualify your son. The next step is for Navy to consider you for a waiver. Until the injury is healed I don't see them granting a waiver. So, where does that leave your son? He can enroll in ROTC, wait until he is healed, and has no limitations, and then reapply for a DODMERB Q or request a waiver. Bottom line is if you have an injury that creates physical limitation you won't be qualified, and if you aren't qualified you won't receive a scholarship offer or be contracted.
    Here's some more info about the DODMERB process http://goldenknightbattalion.wordpress.com/2011/03/16/dodmerb-part-1-open-up-and-say-ahhhh/
     
  9. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Thanks for the link, Clarkson,

    I have done some googling which returned me to posts to this forum in 2007. The only exception I could find was that USMA has overlooked it with Physician"s blessing, but only after a long process. For the Navy, it looks like a killer.

    We will follow the protocol with any suggestions from folks like you. DS has the perfect disposition to deal with this. He knows he will do well no matter what.

    DF (Dear Father) does not have the perfect disposition. He is in first stage of grief: What is this kid doing playing indoor soccer during a weight training class? I know it's irrational, but it is the first stage.

    Thanks for the input.
     
  10. puzzler

    puzzler Member

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    Get a second opinion as soon as possible. Put ROTC and DODMERB on the back burner for now - this is his eyesight we're talking about! I find the doctor's instructions to call when he "starts going blind in his right eye" quite troubling. Find a retina specialist and make an appointment without delay.
     
  11. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    The translation of that quote is that they are waiting for the bubble to actually rupture before cauterizing the wound. Yes, that is something we will get a second opinion about ASAP.

    Thanks.
     
  12. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    I can certainly relate to your husband. With 2 son's in ROTC I have cringed each year when they play the ROTC Army/Navy Flag Football Game. They may call it Flag Football but when you have a bunch of future Army, Marine, and a Few Navy guys together...well it's a new definition of Flag Football. There has not been a year that at least one bone has not been broken during the game. I always sleep better when we get the phone call saying who won, and "No Dad, I didn't get injured"

    Best of luck to your son.
     
  13. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Okay here is the deal. DW and I went wtih DS to his follow-up and we spoke to the Doc. DS does not have Detached Retina. He has Vitreous Hemorrhage (clouding of the gel inside the eyball) Commotio Retinae (bruising of the retina).

    There will be follow-up check ups at decreasing frequency for the next 11 mos at which time he would receive a clean bill of health.

    I googled the diagnoses along with waiver, DODMERB, ROTC, Navy, Air Force, etc. and got no returns.

    Again I ask, is he hosed?

    Thanks in advance.

    P.S. Also thanks for the PM's and other messages of support
     
  14. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Hi cb7893. I don't know the answer to your questions but you certainly made the wise move in clarifying the diagnosis. This certainly sounds less serious a problem than it previously did. Did the doc say how long he should refrain from physical activities? I would think that might be key, but what do I know? I do hope it all works out. I assume you also posted to DoDMERB threads?
     
  15. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Yeah. I posted there and have gotten no reply. In my googling I found there was a poster to DoDMERB threads who seemed to know everything, but hasn't posted for years.

    Doc says no activity which good result in trauma: direct hits, sudden jarring of the head, etc. So no Lacrosse. However, DS will continue weight training which is a good sign, since that can result in increased blood pressure in the eyes and Doc says that's no prob.
     

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