Many individuals believe that Social Security Disability benefits are reserved for disabled workers who are no longer able to maintain gainful employment. While it is true that it can help individuals in such situations, this is not the only type of help that Social Security provides. In addition to disabled workers, Social Security also provides benefits to children who are suffering from severe disabling conditions. In some cases, parents need the financial assistance that Social Security Disability can offer due to the financial strain the child’s condition puts on the family. Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis is one of the conditions that qualify an individual for Social Security Disability benefits. Not only is this condition including in the SSA’s Blue Book of medical impairments, but it also is included in the SSA’s Compassionate Allowances listing, meaning that those who suffer from this disorder may receive benefits in a timelier manner rather than having to wait months or even years before benefits begin.
Cerebrotendinous Xanthomatosis - Condition and Symptoms
Cerebrontendinous xanthomatosis is a condition that is inherited by a child from his or her parents. Individuals who inherit the disorder develop deposits of cholestanol (a type of cholesterol) in the brain and other tissues of the body. While these individuals may have normal total cholesterol levels in the blood, they suffer from elevated levels of cholesterol in the plasma. Because people who suffer from this disorder cannot break down certain lipids properly, the fats accumulate in different areas of the body (usually the brain and connective tissues that attach the muscles of the body to the bones).
The disease is progressive in nature and normally begins after puberty. Symptoms of the disorder include cataracts, chronic diarrhea, stiff tendons, brittle bones, hallucinations, dementia, seizures, depression, impaired coordination and impaired speech. Individuals who are born with the disorder are also at a greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Individuals who are born with cerebrontendinous xanthomatosis inherit mutations in the CYP27A1 gene. This gene gives the body instructions to produce the sterol 27-hydroxylase enzyme, which breaks down cholesterol to form acids that are used to digest fats. The mutations that are caused by this genetic disorder impair the body’s ability to break down cholesterol into a bile acid. Because of this, a buildup of a substance similar to cholesterol, known as cholestanol, accumulates in the xanthomas, brain, blood and nerve cells of the body.
Filing for Social Security Disability with Cerebrontendinous Xanthomatosis
Each year millions of individuals apply for SSD benefits. Of these applicants, only about 30 percent are approved during the initial stage of the application process. This results in the need for a disability appeal, which can take years to complete. Fortunately the SSA has recognized the fact that some disability applicants cannot wait years or even just a few months for benefits to begin. As a result, the SSA has implemented the Compassionate Allowances guidelines which allow certain individuals to begin receiving benefits in a matter of weeks. Cerebrontendinous xanthomatosis is one of the conditions that have been included in these guidelines.
It is important to understand that even though cerebrontendinous xanthomatosis is one of the conditions that have been included in the Compassionate Allowances guidelines, that does not mean that your application for benefits will be automatically approved. You must properly submit the Social Security Disability application paperwork, ensuring that each question is answered in complete detail. The SSA will need as much information as possible to ensure that they understand the nature of your claim and how the condition qualifies for processing under the Compassionate Allowances guidelines. You will also need to be sure that you provide sufficient medical evidence to support your claim. Without sufficient medical evidence, the SSA will not be able to approve your claim for Social Security Disability benefits.
Cerebrontendinous Xanthomatosis and Your Social Security Disability Case
If you are applying for Social Security Disability benefits for a child who has been diagnosed with cerebrontendinous xanthomatosis you should consider enlisting the help of a Social Security Disability attorney. Your attorney can ensure that your application paperwork is filled out properly and that you have enough medical evidence to support your claim for Social Security Disability benefits.
If, for some reason, your claim for Social Security Disability benefits is denied, your lawyer will work with you to ensure that your appeal is processed according to the Compassionate Allowances guidelines. The SSA gives priority to appeals that fall under the Compassionate Allowances guidelines, meaning that you won’t have to wait years for the appeal process to be completed.