In previous years, a lack of understanding about fibromyalgia resulted in denial of disability benefits when the disease stood alone. Fibromyalgia was only credited as a medical disability if it was paired with another condition that could receive a substantiated diagnosis. However, Social Security has ruled fibromyalgia as a medically determined impairment (MDI), and Ruling SSR99-2p covers the initial assessment of fibromyalgia during the initial application process for disability benefits.
It is a disorder causing prominent musculoskeletal pain. This pain can be accompanied by fatigue, sleep deprivation, memory, and mood issues. It causes painful sensations, which, in turn, affects the brain’s ability to process pain signals.
Fibromyalgia and disability are very closely related as it affects the sufferer’s entire body. Anxiety and depression also have links to fibromyalgia, whether as primary or secondary symptoms. The pain seems to arise from the patient’s muscles, and patients commonly report tender points, areas where firm pressure results in additional pain, in soft tissue throughout the body. Pain levels vary from mild discomfort to severely disabling. Additionally, pain differs from one patient to another, and it varies from one day to another.
Often, the only way to diagnose fibromyalgia is by performing tests to eliminate the possibility of other conditions with symptoms that overlap or mimic the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Chemical sensitivity, major depression, chronic headaches, and chronic fatigue syndrome have symptoms similar to fibromyalgia and, in fact, often accompany it. Fibromyalgia social security disability benefits are more difficult to get compared to disability benefits for many other diseases.
It is not at all easy to identify that you have fibromyalgia. This is one of a very few diseases that show no initial signs and symptoms. Its symptoms can closely resemble those of arthritis. But, as fibromyalgia affects soft tissues and not bones, the risk factors are different. Symptoms may include-
Doctors and researchers have not found a definite cause. However, physical, or emotional trauma, sleep disturbances, an unknown viral infection, and abnormal pain responses stemming from the brain all remain possible triggers.
Risk factors in fibromyalgia include-
Both men and women experience fibromyalgia, but women make up 80 percent of patients. Gender, family history, and a previous rheumatic disease each increase the risk of developing the condition.
One word summarizes the likelihood of people living with fibromyalgia to receive approval for disability benefits in the past: dismal.
Disability claims for fibromyalgia would not pass the initial assessment stage because fibromyalgia was considered too subjective. No number of X-rays, blood tests or other diagnostic procedures proved the existence of fibromyalgia in patients. Unless another condition listed by Social Security was named in conjunction with fibromyalgia, claims were dismissed from Fibromyalgia disability benefits consideration.
Today, fibromyalgia disability claims have a higher approval rate provided the diagnosis includes the following criteria set out by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR).
Thankfully, the Social Security ruling and the ACR criteria reduced the barrier previously presented by the subjective nature of fibromyalgia as a disability. Unfortunately, until the Social Security Administration lists fibromyalgia as an official condition that qualifies as a disability in itself, some people will find their initial disability claims denied.
When claims are denied, Fibromyalgia patients may require a lawyer to handle the appeal process to have the individual diagnosis of fibromyalgia approved as a disability.
The chance of getting approved for SSD/ SSI for Fibromyalgia increases when you have:
It is common knowledge that the documentation plays a crucial role in making your case stronger. While applying for disability benefits for fibromyalgia and submitting your application, it is essential to provide accurate supporting documents.
Fibromyalgia Disability Criteria depends on following factors. If you meet the criteria, the next step is to submit all relevant documents. The criteria to receive disability benefits are;
The following specific documents must be submitted along with the disability application.
There are many limitations that fibromyalgia patients have to face. Generally, rheumatologists explain the constraints well in advance to their patients. The limitations can differ from person to person. The patients can face the following difficulties-
The Social Security Administration determines a person’s disability by following a strict procedure. They closely monitor all the documents before making any decisions on the determination of disability applications. Once you submit the application along with all documents, the SSA will verify all the documents with the help of qualified doctors associated with the agency. Many fibromyalgia patients suffer mental conditions. The SSA will ensure that their psychologist check if you are suffering from the following mental impairments.
The team at the SSA will interpret your medical information with strong attention to detail. They will also try to determine how long your condition is likely to last. This will help them in approving the right amount of monetary benefits for your medical situation.
If you are in need of legal representation to fight for your rights in relation to your Fibromyalgia application or appeal, please do not hesitate to contact us today.
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