Published on: October 20, 2020
Fighting for SSDI or SSI can be difficult. It’s a time-consuming, often stressful ordeal that can be made even tougher if you have certain diseases which can be difficult to document. This is particularly true without a thorough understanding of the symptoms associated with the disease.
Medical conditions such as lupus are difficult to properly assess. Even though you are inhibited by your illness, the SSA needs extensive documentation of your disease and how it affects your daily life. Hiring an experienced and compassionate Social Security disability advocate can not only process your lupus disability claim for you, but also provide the support you need so you can focus on your health.
What Is Chronic Lupus?
According to the Lupus Foundation of America, chronic lupus is a long-term autoimmune disease that can cause inflammation and pain in any part of the body. As an autoimmune disease, Lupus forces the immune system to attack otherwise healthy tissue.
Lupus commonly affects the skin, joints, and internal organs such as the kidneys, but since it can affect everyone differently, there are a range of unique symptoms. This makes it difficult for the SSA to have one definition for lupus.
There are technically four types of chronic lupus:
- Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE): The most common form of chronic lupus
- Cutaneous lupus: This form of lupus is limited to the skin.
- Drug-induced lupus: This lupus-like disease is the result of certain prescription drugs.
- Neonatal lupus: A rare condition, neonatal lupus affects infants of women who have lupus.
Currently, no one knows what causes chronic lupus. Certain groups of people are more likely to develop the autoimmune disorder, such as women between the ages of 15 and 44, racial or ethnic groups like African Americans, or people who have family members with lupus. What is known is that chronic lupus, like other autoimmune diseases, can be inherited. Some medical experts think that lupus may develop in response to both external and internal triggers, such as hormones, environment, and genetics.
How Can Chronic Lupus Qualify for Disability Benefits?
Part of the SSA’s "Blue Book" is devoted to lupus claims. For those not familiar with it, the Blue Book is the impairment listing manual. It is essentially a guideline used by both Social Security disability examiners and administrative law judges as a reference used to render decisions on SSDI and SSI disability claims that involve certain medical issues (i.e. "listed" impairments such as lupus).
Chronic lupus is referenced in the manual as systemic lupus erythematosus under the category of immune system impairments. It is listed under this category because it is mainly used in reference to other medical conditions. For instance, it is often cited in association with joint disorders, muscle disorders, cardiovascular disorders, neurological conditions and so on.
What The Lupus Disability Criteria?
To qualify for disability benefits with chronic lupus, applicants must meet the conditions listed in the Blue Book under 4.02 Systemic lupus erythematosus:
- The lupus involves two or more organs or body systems.
- The disease includes at least two major signs or symptoms, such as severe fatigue, fever, malaise, and involuntary weight loss.
Additionally, your lupus can qualify for disability benefits if the symptoms occur repeatedly and causes:
- Limitation of daily living activities
- Limitation of social functioning
- Limitation in completing tasks in a timely manner because of problems with concentration, persistence, or pace
Remember, medical evidence is the most important element of your disability application. You will need your medical professionals to provide the SSA with the right documents and evidence to support your claim.
How Can Disability Advocates Help Support Your Lupus Disability Claim?
Navigating the process of seeking disability benefits for victims of a disease like lupus can be quite intimidating. That’s why seeking competent, experienced advocacy when seeking Social Security disability benefits can make all the differences in your case.
Call Disability Experts of Florida and make an appointment for a free consultation regarding your case. Medical conditions such as chronic lupus can be complex and present unique problems in the process of seeking disability benefits. So, let only the best help your case for you and contact Disability Experts of Florida today.