How Much Is Your Testicle (Or Ovary) Worth?

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Unfortunately, due to the enemy’s favorite weapon in Afghanistan and Iraq – the improvised explosive device – that’s not an irrelevant question. The roadside bombs often are buried and blow up as a soldier walks over them, which can cause serious harm to one’s nether regions, if he or she is fortunate enough to survive. Such wounds doubled between 2009 and 2010; about 570 troops have suffered such injuries over the past decade.

In the past, these wounds have warranted VA disability pay and lifetime care associated with them. But now there’s a lump-sum payout under the Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance Traumatic Injury Protection program as well. The VA has decided to make such wounds just as eligible for the one-time payments as the loss of an arm or leg.

Men who lose a testicle receive $25,000 (the same as for the loss of a big toe); it’s doubled if you lose both. Same for ovaries. Loss of the penis, the vaginal canal, or the ability to urinate each results in a $50,000 payout, the same as for the loss of a hand or foot. VA FAQs are here.

“Payments for these injuries are retroactive to October 7, 2001; the start of the war in Afghanistan,” VA blogger Alex Horton notes. Just more (hidden) evidence of sacrifice.