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December 20, 2023

How to Win a VA Rating for Glaucoma

Last updated on February 22, 2024

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

If you want to learn how to implement these strategies to get the VA benefits you deserve, click here to speak with a VA claim expert for free.

Looking to get a VA rating for Glaucoma? 

You’ve come to the right place. 

While glaucoma is generally a genetic condition, it’s found in veterans with in-service injuries or exposure to specific irritants. 

In this guide, we’ll break down how to qualify for a glaucoma VA rating, how the VA rates glaucoma, potential VA benefits and compensation, and what to do if your claim is denied. 

Let’s get started. 


VA Rating for Glaucoma 

You can find the VA rating for glaucoma under CFR 38 Part 4 (4.79 Schedule of Ratings – eye). 

More specifically:

  • Diagnostic Code 6012: Angle-Closure Glaucoma 
  • Diagnostic Code 6013: Open-Angle Glaucoma

Angle-Closure Glaucoma

Also known as acute glaucoma or narrow-angle glaucoma, angle-closure glaucoma is a   condition where the eye pressure generally rises very quickly. 

Symptoms of angle-closure glaucoma include:

  • Severe headache 
  • Severe eye pain
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Halos or colored rings around lights
  • Eye redness

Open-Angle Glaucoma 

Open-angle glaucoma typically develops slowly and presents no symptoms in the early stages. 

However, once known, you may experience:

  • Gradually, patchy blind spots in your side vision or peripheral vision
  • Difficulty seeing things in your central vision in later stages

How the VA Rates Glaucoma 

The VA rates glaucoma at 10%, 20%, 40%, and 60%, depending on the severity of your condition. 

The VA rates glaucoma according to three criteria:

  • Central Visual Acuity – better known as being near-sighted or far-sighted
  • The Visual Field – considered your entire range of vision from central to peripheral on all sides, including up and down
  • Muscle Function – refers to how well your eyes move 

Glaucoma VA Rating Chart 

Severity of Symptoms VA Rating for Glaucoma 
With documented incapacitating episodes requiring 7 or more treatment visits for an eye condition during the past 12 months60%
With documented incapacitating episodes requiring at least 5 but less than 7 treatment visits for an eye condition during the past 12 months40%
With documented incapacitating episodes requiring at least 3 but less than 5 treatment visits for an eye condition during the past 12 months20%
With documented incapacitating episodes requiring at least 1 but less than 3 treatment visits for an eye condition during the past 12 months10%

How to Get Service-Connected for Glaucoma 

To receive disability benefits and a Glaucoma VA disability rating, you must meet the following criteria:

  1. A current diagnosis 
  2. An in-service event, injury, illness, or aggravation
  3. A medical nexus (i.e., link) between the current diagnosis and the in-service event, injury, illness, or aggravation

Important: Glaucoma is frequently viewed as hereditary, so when submitting your claim, ensure you provide sufficient medical evidence to prove your condition is service-connected. 


Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call with an experienced Team Member. Learn what you’ve been missing so you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation you’ve earned for your service.

Steps to Submit a VA Disability Claim for Glaucoma 

  1. Gather your evidence and supporting documents (i.e., VA medical records, hospital records, private medical records, hospital reports, and supporting statements)
  2. Submit your VA Form 21-526EZ claim online, in person at your local regional VA office, or by mail to:

Department of Veterans Affairs
Claims Intake Center
PO Box 4444
Janesville, WI 53547-4444

PRO TIP: When you plan to file a claim for VA disability for glaucoma, you should submit an intent to file form, which gives you time to gather the necessary evidence and documentation. This locks in your effective date—and could grant you additional back pay!  

Glaucoma as a Secondary VA Disability

While proving your glaucoma is caused by another condition is difficult, it’s not impossible. 

For example, diabetes can cause irregular blood vessels to grow in your retina, leading to blocked eye drainage and glaucoma.

Additional conditions that have been known to develop or worsen glaucoma include:

  • Hypertension
  • Severe eye injury or trauma
  • Migraines  

Before you can receive glaucoma VA disability as a secondary condition, you must first prove an already service-connected condition caused it. 

Causes of Glaucoma in Veterans (Including Burn Pits)

You served your country, but it’s not without downsides. Many veterans experience various health conditions due to their service that impact daily life. 

You can link your glaucoma to your service for several reasons, including:

  • An illness experienced while on active duty that began or worsened your vision loss
  • A serious brain or eye injury while on active duty
  • Exposure to environmental conditions during service that negatively affected your eyesight, including sandstorms or burn pits 

Treatment for Glaucoma

If you receive a glaucoma VA disability rating, there are several treatment options available, including:

  • Eye drops 
  • Oral medication
  • Surgery
  • Laser treatment

Additional Support for Veterans with Glaucoma 

If you receive glaucoma VA disability, you may be eligible for the following additional benefits:

Denied VA Claim for Glaucoma?

You can file an appeal if your VA claim is denied and you feel you deserve a VA rating for glaucoma.

For VA decisions dated on or after February 19, 2019, you have three options to continue your case:


Glaucoma VA Rating (FAQs) Frequently Asked Questions

What types of medical evidence should I submit with my glaucoma VA claim?

When submitting a claim to receive a glaucoma VA rating, it’s best to include the following medical evidence:

Can I receive VA disability for glaucoma if I have a VA rating for another condition?

Yes, you can have a VA rating for multiple conditions, leading to a combined VA rating. However, no VA rating can exceed 100%. 

Is there a VA rating for bilateral glaucoma?

The General Rating Formula for Diseases of the Eye does not have a rating for bilateral and unilateral.

How long is the claims process for a glaucoma VA rating?

The claims process varies depending on several factors, including the complexity of your case and the volume of claims being processed by the VA. 

To help further along your claim, start the process immediately to avoid unnecessary delays. 



Most veterans are underrated for their disabilities and, therefore, not getting their due compensation. At VA Claims Insider, we guide you and take control of the claims process so you may get the rating and compensation you’re owed by law. 

If you’ve filed your VA disability claim and have been denied or have received a low rating—or you’re unsure how to get started—reach out to us! Our process takes the guesswork out of filing a VA disability claim and supports you in building a fully developed claim (FDC)—so you may increase your rating FAST! Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call. Learn what you’ve been missing—so you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation YOU DESERVE!

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