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Will my health condition qualify me for disability?

If you are suffering from a chronic disabling condition, you may qualify for receiving either Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

The federal Social Security Administration (SSA) has its "Listing of Medical Impairments," which is colloquially referred to as "the blue book." It lists each qualifying condition and details the factors that must be present to be considered.

But even those who don't find their particular condition listed could still be qualified by additional guidelines from the agency. Below is the list of the medically approved impairments for adults.

  • Speech and sensory impairments, e.g., loss of hearing or vision
  • Problems with the musculoskeletal system, including bone, joint and back conditions
  • Cardiovascular problems like coronary artery disease or chronic heart failure
  • Respiratory problems, such as cystic fibrosis or asthma
  • Neurological conditions (Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis)
  • Conditions involving the blood, e.g., hemoohilia and sickle cell
  • Digestive disorders, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and liver disease
  • Problems with the immune system like lupus, HIV/AIDS, kidney disease and rheumatoid arthritis
  • Intellectual disabilities and mental conditions, i.e., autism, anxiety, depression or schizophrenia

Of course, applicants must be able to back up their allegations of disability with solid medical evidence from their doctors' chart notes and their own test results.

Because patients' medical records present a continuum of the disease progression, it's important to always list all of your complaints and symptoms whenever you visit your doctor. Even seemingly unrelated complaints could be part of a cluster of symptoms that could substantiate your claims of disability to SSA investigators.

Your Social Security disability attorney can review your file and offer advice on whether or not you have a qualifying condition.

Source: FindLaw, "Medical Conditions that Qualify You for Disability Claims," accessed Nov. 17, 2017

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