Functional Limitations for Heart Failure

If you are suffering from heart failure you will also be experiencing functional limitation which is when the condition is a significant hindrance to a person’s ability to undertake tasks required in daily life or when at work. The symptoms of heart failure can include shortness of breath when you exert yourself or when you lie down, rapid or irregular heartbeat, persistent coughing or wheezing causing the presence of white or pink blood-tinged phlegm.

This can make it difficult to do jobs which involve any sort of exertion at all such as heavy lifting or even stretching and bending. If the functional limitations for heart failure make it impossible for you to work, you may qualify for disability benefits.

Qualifying For Disability Benefits With a Functional Limitation

Chronic heart failure can be found in Section 4.02 in the SSA’s Blue Book. However, in order to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits due to heart failure, you must be able to prove that:

  • you have been diagnosed with heart failure while undergoing treatment;
  • the symptoms of heart failure seriously limits the ability to independently initiate, sustain, or complete activities of daily living;
  • there are 3 or more separate recorded episodes of acute congestive heart failure within 12-months.

For anyone who does do not meet the Blue Book listing, the SSA has created the medical vocational allowance. This is specific to you and your job. You are first assessed based on your functional limitations and skills to see if you are able to work or you are young enough to learn new skills

What To Expect When Applying For SSD with a Medical Vocational Allowance

If you are trying to seek disability benefits under the SSA’s medical vocational allowance you will need to participate in a residual functional capacity test (RFC). This is carried out by your physician and you will be asked to lift a weight of say 50 lbs, stand still in one place for a certain period of time and have your eyesight tested. The SSA will review your medical records and determine from their findings how long your heart failure is likely to last. It will also decide whether you have any other skills you can use in a job when suffering from heart failure.

Functional Limitations for Heart Failure

Next Steps to Take

Before filing a claim for disability benefits you will need to gather all of the required documentation, work history and medical records. Test results proving heart failure are:

  • an electrocardiogram (ECG) which records the electrical activity of your heart to check for heart failure;
  • an echocardiogram which is like an ultrasound scan where sound waves are used to examine your heart;
  • a blood test which confirms if there is anything present in your blood that may indicate heart failure;
  • the results of a spirometry and a peak flow test
  • the results of a chest X-ray which will indicate if your heart is larger than normal.

    A Disability Attorney May Increase Your Chances of Success

    Claims for SSD through the medical vocational allowance offered by the SSA are never easy to win. However, help from a disability attorney may offer you the best chance of winning the disability benefits you deserve. Fill out the Free Case Evaluation on this page today!

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