The symptoms of Chronic Thrombocytopenia can be severe and may often prevent an individual from performing substantial gainful work activity. Unable to work, the individuals suffering from the condition can also face significant financial hardship. Without a means of income or medical insurance, the financial burden can be overwhelming. In some cases, Social Security Disability benefits can alleviate some of this financial stress caused by the condition. If you have been suffering from Chronic Thrombocytopenia and are wondering whether or not you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, the following information can help you understand what the Social Security Administration (SSA) looks for in a disability application.
Chronic Thrombocytopenia - Condition and Symptoms
Platelets are a certain type of blood cell. When an individual suffers from Chronic Thrombocytopenia they suffer from a continuous low platelet count over a long period of time. The platelets in the blood help the blood to clot. If a person has a low platelet count, their blood cannot clot normally. This can result in spontaneous and severe bleeding.
A person's blood usually has 150,000 to 450,000 platelets per micro liter. When the platelet level drops below 150,000, an individual is considered to have thrombocytopenia. When this condition persists over a long period of time it is defined as Chronic Thrombocytopenia.
The severity of Chronic Thrombocytopenia varies from person to person. Some individuals suffer from mild thrombocytopenia while others may suffer from a severe case. If a person's platelet count drops below 10,000, the condition may be life threatening and can cause bleeding from the major organs of the body.
There are a number of conditions that can lead to Chronic Thrombocytopenia. HIV, AIDS, Leukemia, toxins in the blood and excessive alcohol consumption can all be causes of the condition as can autoimmune diseases that attack the body's platelets.
When diagnosing Chronic Thrombocytopenia your doctor will review your family medical history, perform a physical exam and order blood work. Other tests may be performed depending on the specific symptoms you are exhibiting.
A person suffering from Chronic Thrombocytopenia will often experience abnormal and excessive bleeding, easy bruising and red or purple spots on the skin. There may also be an appearance of blood in the urine or stool.
There is technically no cure for Chronic Thrombocytopenia, although treatments are available. The course of treatment will depend on the underlying cause of the condition. When the cause of the Chronic Thrombocytopenia is discovered, it can be addressed. Blood transfusions, prescription medications and surgery may be treatment options.
Filing for Social Security Disability with Chronic Thrombocytopenia
When filing for Social Security Disability benefits due to Chronic Thrombocytopenia you will need to prove to the SSA that your condition is so severe that it prevents you from being able to perform substantial gainful work activity. When an individual applies for Social Security Disability benefits, the examiner reviewing the application refers to a “Blue Book” of impairment listings. Chronic Thrombocytopenia is covered under Section 7.06 of these listings. It is important to understand, however, that a diagnosis of Chronic Thrombocytopenia in and of itself is not enough to qualify you for Social Security Disability benefits. In order to qualify for disability benefits due to Chronic Thrombocytopenia your platelet count must remain below 40,000 and you must have had at least one spontaneous hemorrhage resulting in a blood transfusion within the past five months or you must have had bleeding within the brain in the twelve months prior to your disability application.
If your specific case of Chronic Thrombocytopenia falls within the above guidelines you may be able to obtain an approval for Social Security Disability benefits in the initial stage of the disability application process. This will normally take somewhere between three to four months. If your Chronic Thrombocytopenia condition does not meet the above guidelines but still prevents you from working, you may still be able to obtain Social Security Disability benefits but will likely have to go through the appeals process in order to do so. It will be up to you to prove that your disability prevents you from being able to work even though you do not meet the published SSA guidelines. This can be done through medical records, work history and statements from your treating physicians and expert medical witnesses.
Chronic Thrombocytopenia and Your Social Security Disability Case
Each case of Chronic Thrombocytopenia is different. Some Social Security Disability applicants suffering from the condition will have an easier time qualifying for benefits than others. Overall, only about 30 percent of Social Security Disability applications are approved at the initial stage of the claim process. If your application for benefits is one of the 70 percent that are denied at this stage, you will need to go on to file an appeal in order to receive benefits.
If you are looking to file for disability benefits or have already been denied, you should consider hiring a Social Security Disability lawyer to represent you in your claim. Statistics show that hiring a disability attorney can significantly increase your chances of receiving a favorable decision.