Chronic Obstructive Uropathy and Social Security Disability

Sometimes chronic obstructive uropathy is present at birth. In other cases, the condition is the result of an accident, injury, or another illness. Regardless of why or how the disorder develops however, it causes serious, even life-threatening complications, including kidney damage and renal failure.

The obstruction of urine flow from the kidney to the bladder may be complete or partial. It may come and go, dependent upon the cause of the condition. Severe chronic obstruction can qualify for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

Medically Qualifying with Chronic Obstructive Uropathy

The SSA evaluates disability claims based on medical evidence. Evidence is compared with listings in the Blue Book, which is a manual of known disabling impairments. Although there is no dedicated listing for Chronic Obstructive Uropathy, the SSA evaluates the condition under the listing for Impaired Renal Function in Section 6.02 of the Blue Book.

This listing requires your renal disease has been present or is expected to last for 12 consecutive months. Additionally, your medical records must show one of the following:

  • You require dialysis on an ongoing basis
  • You need or have had a kidney transplant
  • Your serum creatinine levels persistently measure at 4 mg/deciliter or greater or that your creatinine clearance levels are at or below 20 ml/minute

If your creatinine levels are the basis for your approval for benefits, your medical records must additionally show tests were performed several times over the course of three months and consistently show significant impairment in kidney function.

At least one of the following complications must also be present in order to qualify based on creatinine results:

  • Osteodystrophy, documented through imaging scans
  • Sensory or motor neuropathy
  • Fluid overload syndrome with diastolic hypertension or vascular congestion
  • Anorexia and weight loss with a body mass (BMI) index of 18.0 or lower on two separate BMI evaluations conducted within a consecutive 6-month period but at least 30 days apart

The SSA maintains separate listings in the Blue Book for childhood disabilities and chronic obstructive uropathy is evaluated under Section 106.02. This listing requires the disease has been present or is expected to last at least 12 months. It additionally requires at least one of the follow is documented in the child’s medical records:

  • Ongoing dialysis is necessary
  • A kidney transplant is required
  • Serum creatinine levels over the course of at least three months are 3 mg/dl or higher
  • Over a three month period, creatinine clearance levels are low based on body surface area, measuring 30 ml per minute or lower

It is important to note that when a kidney transplant occurs, applicants receive benefits for 12 months after surgery. At the expiration of that first year, the SSA conducts a continuing eligibility review. If the applicant is still significantly impaired, then disability benefits will continue.

Getting Help with Your Chronic Obstructive Uropathy Claim

If applying for benefits for yourself, you can submit your application online at any time or schedule an appointment at your local SSA office by calling 1-800-772-1213. If you’re applying for benefits on behalf of a minor child, the application must be completed in person at the local office. In either case, you may want to get help with your claim.

Your doctor is an invaluable resource in understanding the SSA’s Blue Book requirements and in ensuring medical documentation meets disability eligibility rules. An attorney or advocate can also be helpful in completing your application, navigating the SSA’s review processes, and in appealing your claim, if you are initially denied benefits.