If you have an eligible disability that prevents you from working, you may be entitled to Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Navigating the process of applying for Social Security benefits can be challenging, especially for those contending with musculoskeletal disorders.
The Los Angeles-based Attorneys at Disability Advocates Group will help you answer your questions. We will help you understand whether you are entitled to benefits during a free case evaluation. Our attorneys work with you every step of the way and will help you gather the information you need to submit a thorough and accurate application. We also assist clients who need to appeal a denial of their benefits.
Is My Musculoskeletal Disorder Considered a Disability?
Several types of musculoskeletal disorders are eligible for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration. However, the disorder must be debilitating enough to prevent a person from being able to work. The musculoskeletal system includes a person’s ligaments, tendons, bones, and connective tissues. When a patient has a disorder involving his or her musculoskeletal framework, it can cause mobility issues, inflammation, pain, and other serious symptoms. Some musculoskeletal disorders are common, such as low back pain.
While common, low back pain can be debilitating and cause excruciating pain, making it impossible for a person to return to work. On the other hand, ankle sprains and strains are also considered musculoskeletal conditions. Still, they usually heal relatively easily. However, you may be eligible for benefits if your musculoskeletal disorder negatively impacts your ability to perform everyday functions.
For example, if you have a complex fracture that is not healing properly despite ongoing medical treatment preventing you from working, you may be eligible for benefits. If you aren’t sure whether your medical condition qualifies you for benefits, the attorneys at Disability Advocates group are here to help. We can help you understand whether you’re eligible during a complimentary case evaluation.
Eligible Musculoskeletal Conditions
Different conditions can cause musculoskeletal disorders and pain. The Social Security Administration uses a guidebook called the Blue Book to determine which medical disorders are eligible for SSDI benefits. The Blue Book lists are categorized based on the bodily system. The Blue Book section addressing musculoskeletal disorders includes a wide range of affecting the musculoskeletal system.
However, the Blue Book does not list every disability that falls under the category of musculoskeletal disorder. Suppose your medical diagnosis is not listed in the blue book. In that case, you may still be eligible for benefits if you can demonstrate that you cannot perform meaningful work by submitting your medical records.
The Social Security Administration uses the Blue Book as a guide to help determine whether a claimant’s diagnosis affects his or her ability to perform tasks, move, and concentrate on a job. Some of the most common musculoskeletal disorders listed in the Blue Book include the following:
- Skeletal spine disorders that compromise one or more nerve roots
- A non-healing or complex fracture to a person’s upper extremity
- Spinal stenosis in the lumbar, resulting in a compromised cauda equina
- Surgical arthrodesis or reconstructive surgery of a major weight-bearing joint
- Abnormality of an extremity or one or more major joints
- Amputation of a limb or appendage for any cause
- Pathological fractures due to any cause
- Complex fractures of the tibia, femur, pelvis, or one or more of the talocrural bones that will not heal
Musculoskeletal Symptoms Can Be Debilitating
Musculoskeletal disorders can be congenital or hereditary or develop over time. The ongoing symptoms associated with musculoskeletal disorders can be debilitatingly painful and make daily tasks difficult, if not impossible, to complete. Musculoskeletal disorder symptoms can cause infection, degeneration, inflammation, and trauma to one or more joints, leading to a loss of physical function or ability. Those who suffer from musculoskeletal disorders may have the following symptoms that make it difficult to continue working:
- Ongoing infections
- Joint stiffness or creakiness
- Impaired functioning
- Tenderness and inflammation in and around joints
- Limited range of motion
- Fluid retention
- Joint destruction or deformity
- Loss of function
- Spinal disorders
- Prolonged immobility
- Extended convalescence
Demonstrating the Severity of Your Musculoskeletal Disorder
Even if you have lost your ability to work and engage in day-to-day activities today, it could be challenging to prove that your condition is severe enough to make you eligible for disability benefits. Working with Disability Advocates Group can help you ensure that your application includes medical evidence showing the severity of your disorder.
We will help you gather medical documentation that shows the degree of your disabling musculoskeletal condition. The application should include as much evidence of your symptoms as possible. The following evidence will help you successfully apply for disability benefits:
- Imaging exam results
- Physical examinations
- Rehabilitation records
- Proof of your response to prescribed medical treatments
- Medical records
The Benefits of Working with an Experienced Attorney
Applying for Social Security disability benefits is a challenging process. While applicants can submit an application without legal representation, the likelihood of successfully obtaining benefits increases when a skilled attorney represents them. Applicants unfamiliar with the process can spend significant money, time, and attention on their application only to realize it’s been denied due to a lack of information.
When you work with Disability Advocates Group, we will help you understand your eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Our team will ensure your application is correct and complete and add supportive medical evidence to your application. If you receive a notice saying your application has been denied, we will help you submit your request for reconsideration and address the reason for the dental.
Discuss Your Case with an SSDI Attorney in Los Angeles
If you have been diagnosed with a musculoskeletal disorder that prevents you from being able to work and support yourself, Disability Advocates Group is here to help. We will carefully review your case and help you learn more about the application process. Don’t hesitate to contact our Los Angeles SSDI attorneys to schedule a complimentary case evaluation.