What Back Conditions Qualify for Disability?

Back pain can be debilitating. Often, back problems can be severe enough to keep you from working and earning a living. You might be wondering what conditions qualify for disability? Many people who find themselves limited because of back problems apply for Social Security Disability benefits.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) oversees Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). To meet the medical criteria of either program, you must have a condition that will leave you disabled for a minimum of a year, or it must be a condition that is expected to result in your death.

SSDI is based on your work history, so you must have worked the equivalent of five years full-time out of the last 10 years, while SSI is needs-based and specific income and resource requirements apply.

What Back Conditions Qualify for Disability?

The Social Security Administration (SSA) devotes an entire section of a medical guide called the Blue Book to back conditions that might qualify you for disability benefits. Section 1.0 lists all the conditions that make a claimant eligible for financial assistance, as well as the severity of symptom standards a claimant has to meet.

Because of the important role the spine plays in controlling back structure, movement, and flexibility, a disabling back medical condition can leave you without work for a considerable period. Although back pain is considered one of the most frequent types of disability claims with the SSA, there is no guarantee that anyone filing for disability with back pain will receive approval for a claim.

Because many applicants for disability benefits face challenges in getting a disability claim approved by the SSA, you should consider working with a Social Security disability attorney to file the most persuasive claim. The primary back conditions that receive approval for financial assistance include spinal stenosis, herniated disc, spinal arachnoiditis, and spinal nerve root compression. Other back issues that might meet the medical standards established by the SSA include scoliosis, fractured vertebrae, and degenerative joint disease.

The key to getting a claim for disability benefits approved by the SSA involves submitting medical records that confirm you suffer from a Blue Book-approved medical condition. Medical records to include with your disability claim include the results of diagnostic tests, as well as a description of treatment programs and physical therapy sessions. You should also submit evidence that proves you have missed work because of a disabling back condition.

Back Conditions That Limit Your Abilities

There are several different back conditions that affect mobility, lead to restrictions, and cause severe pain. While there are conditions that have sudden onset because of an accident, there are conditions that occur with age or are caused by other medical conditions.

There are dozens of conditions that might render you disabled. Here are some of the more common back problems that can be disabling:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Herniated discs
  • Nerve root compression
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Degenerative disc disorder
  • Scoliosis
  • Arachnoiditis
  • Spondylitis

Back pain can be debilitating, but just saying you are in pain isn’t enough to get approved for disability benefits. It can be a challenged to be approved for disability with any of these conditions.

You will need to provide supporting medical documentation that clearly details your condition and its severity.

Supporting Medical Documentation

To prove that you have one these disabling back conditions and to prove how it limits you, you will need to provide specific medical records. You will need to provide medical test results and examination records, such as MRIs, CT scans, x-rays, physician notes, and a definitive diagnosis to indicate that you have this condition.

Your physician notes should indicate that you have a spinal abnormality or an abnormality of the spinal canal and that it causes you severe discomfort and pain, also leading to restrictions and limitations in your ability to work and perform your daily tasks.

Back pain is an expensive medical condition. You will have physician visits, specialists, physical therapy, chiropractors, and medical tests. You may have prescriptions and medical devices, such as back braces or walkers, and you might have additional medical tests, such as periodic MRIs or x-rays.

Your disability benefits can help you cover those costs. After two years of disability benefits, you qualify for Medicare, which is an insurance program that will help with your treatment costs.

Consult with A Disability Lawyer

If you are unable to work because of a back condition, you should consult with a Social Security Disability attorney. With the help of a disability lawyer, you are much more likely to get your claim on track and be awarded the disability benefits you need. Schedule your free case review today.

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