It can be startling to visit your doctor for a routine check-up and instead be told you have a serious disease. These diagnoses often pop up out of nowhere, and rarely are we prepared for them. A person often doesn’t know how he or she will afford the medical care, or if they will be able to continue working. Social Security disability benefits offer a way to ease the financial burden. Unfortunately, it usually takes a long time for the application to go through, anywhere between six months to two years. Sometimes that is too long to wait when you have been diagnosed with a rare or serious disorder.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has compiled a list called the Compassionate Allowances, which names certain rare and severe disorders that make it possible for a person afflicted with such a disorder to apply for benefits using an expedited process. Instead of the normal months-long process, a person diagnosed with a disease listed in the Compassionate Allowances goes through a much shorter application time, perhaps only a few weeks. You are also able to start collecting your benefits sooner, usually when the next benefits cycle begins.
Small Intestine Cancer – Condition and Symptoms
Small Intestine Cancer forms in the tissues of the small intestine. There are a few different types of the cancer but the most common is Adenocarcinoma. It begins in the glandular cells that are in the lining of the small intestine. The majority of tumors begin in the part of the small intestine that is closest to the stomach.
The symptoms of Small Intestine Cancer includes unexplained weight loss, abdominal pain, a lump in the abdomen and blood in the stool. Because these symptoms are similar to those of other conditions, a person might not think to get tested for Small Intestine Cancer until the disease has already progressed quite a bit. The only cure available is to complete removal of the affected area. This is not possible if the tumors have already begun to spread. Treatments include biologic therapy, radiation and/or chemotherapy. Radiation is used to treat painful symptoms and provide a better quality of life for the patient. It will not cure the cancer.
The prognosis for Small Intestine Cancer is not too good. There is only a 20% chance of surviving for 5 years, and that is if the cancer is resectable. If you have been diagnosed with Small Intestine Cancer that your doctor has said is inoperable it means he has decided that surgery would not be beneficial to you. If it has been deemed unresectable this means that surgery was performed but the affected area was not able to be removed completely.
Filing for Social Security Disability with Small Intestine Cancer
If you have been diagnosed with Small Intestine Cancer that your doctor has decided is inoperable, unresectable or recurrent, you are allowed to apply for benefits with a shorter process under the Compassionate Allowances ruling. Instead of a three to six month initial disability application process, your application previous will be a few weeks assuming that you have all of the documentation necessary. Then, once you have been approved, you can start collecting your benefits as soon as the next benefit cycle begins. Although you can rest assured that the process will be faster and easier for you, and that you are indeed entitled to benefits, it still doesn’t hurt to contact a Social Security disability lawyer.
An experienced disability lawyer can review your case with you and help you find the best options for dealing with your particular disorder. People are sometimes surprised to find out that many cases are delayed or denied for the simple reason of out-of-order paperwork or missing documentation. A disability lawyer can help you to make sure all the papers are filed correctly and that you have the correct medical documents available to the SSA adjudicators when they are reviewing your file.
Each case requires specific medical evidence. For Small Intestine Cancer it is a good idea to have a pathology report and an operative report to prove your disability. If you are not able to get these documents, you may use a written opinion from your doctor that the cancer is inoperable, unresectable or recurrent.
Your Small Intestine Cancer Social Security Disability Case
If you have decided to file for Social Security disability, contact a disability lawyer in your area as soon as possible. However, if you have already started the process, a disability lawyer can still jump in to help at any point in your case, even if you have been denied and are going through the appeals process.