You are here

Chronic Solvent Encephalopathy F083

Last amended 
30 June 2015
Current RMA Instruments:
Reasonable Hypothesis SOP
71 of 2013
Balance of Probabilities SOP
72 of 2013
Changes from Previous Instruments:

SOP Bulletin 169

ICD Coding:
  • ICD-9-CM Codes: 349.82
  • ICD-10-AM Codes: G92

This is an injury to the brain due to chronic solvent exposure causing materially significant symptoms and signs of brain dysfunction. This is not due to a single acute intoxication with solvents, but multiple acute exposures or chronic exposure.

Is specific diagnostic evidence required to apply the SOP?Yes.

This diagnosis is complex, is a diagnosis of exclusion, and is based on a specialist neurologist report. Normally brain imaging is required, with the normal battery of blood tests, and neuropsychological testing may also be utilised. A diagnosis of chronic solvent encephalopathy should be made by a neurologist and not by a psychiatrist, neurosurgeon or psychologist.

Note that:

  • all features of the detailed diagnostic criteria must be met;
  • the condition must be demonstrably symptomatic and interfering with the veteran’s everyday activities;
  • the connection with the solvent exposure must be temporally close; and
  • the condition should be non-progressive once the exposure has ceased.

A toxic based neurological disorder is normally considered as one which produces brain damage at the time or within a reasonable time period of chemical exposure, not appearing years later.

Are there sub-factors that require specific information? – No.
Additional diagnoses which may be covered by SOP
  • Substance induced dementia
  • Chemical brain injury
Conditions excluded from SOP
  • Alcoholic encephalopathy
  • Disorder from anaesthetic gas use or short acting vasodilators.
Unconfirmed diagnosis

If, after applying the above information, you are unable to confirm the diagnosis, you should then seek medical officer advice about further investigation.