Dan Richard Cohen, Attorney at Law

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What Medical Conditions Or Impairments Can Qualify Me For Social Security Disability Or SSI Benefits?

Any medical condition, either mental or physical, can be a basis for receiving disability benefits.

Social Security regulations require that your condition be medically determinable. This means that there is medical evidence that shows what your condition is. This medical evidence may include your doctor's examination notes and reports of specific medical findings; radiology studies such as x-rays, MRI reports, and CT reports; laboratory tests, such as urine tests, blood tests or biopsies; and any other specialized testing that doctors use to determine what your condition is.

However, it is not enough to simply show that you have a medical condition. In addition to the medical evidence showing what your condition is, you must also be able to show that your condition affects your function so that you are limited in your ability to perform work activity.

The Social Security regulations include a section called the Listing of Impairments. This list of impairments includes conditions affecting all body systems. If you have a condition that is one of the listed impairments, and your condition meets all the required criteria, you will be considered disabled. Also, if you do not exactly meet the criteria, your condition may be disabling if it equals one of the listed impairments.

The listed impairments include some of the following:

  musculoskeletal conditions, including back, neck, hip, or shoulder, problems;

 vision and hearing conditions;

 pulmonary and heart diseases such as COPD, severe asthma, heart failure, blocked arteries, or peripheral vascular disease;

 digestive problems, including Crohn's Disease, ulcerative colitis, or other bowel conditions;

 neurological conditions, including seizures, strokes, peripheral neuropathy, spinal cord injures;

 mental conditions, such as depression, bi-polar, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders or PTSD;

 immune system disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, ankylosing spodylitis;

  and cancers.

This is just a partial list. Other disabling conditions may include:

 failed back syndrome after surgery;

 carpal tunnel syndrome;

 headaches and migraines;


 ankle and knee problems;

 reflex sympathetic dsytrophy or chronic regional pain syndrome;

 and complications from diabetes.

Also, it is important to remember that if your condition is one of the listed impairments but does not meet all of the criteria, or if you have a condition, that is not one of the listed ones, you may still be disabled under other Social Security rules.

Social Security disability rules are complicated. Do not rely on this information alone to determine if you qualify for benefits. Contact me for your free consulation to discuss your specific situation.


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