Colitis can be a very painful and debilitating condition. People who suffer from Colitis may experience chronic pain and a variety of other symptoms that can be detrimental to one's lifestyle. Because of this, many of the individuals who suffer from Colitis are unable to work. The resulting lack of income compiled with Colitis-related medical bills can cause a serious financial burden. In some cases, Social Security Disability benefits may help relieve the financial stress caused by the condition. If you are suffering from Colitis and want to know how your condition affects your eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits, the following information can help.
Colitis - Condition and Symptoms
Colitis is a condition involving the inflammation of the colon. The colon is the part of your body that collects and stores the waste products produced by the body's digestive process. When the inner lining of the colon becomes irritated and inflamed, the condition is referred to as Colitis.
Any type of inflammation of the colon is referred to as Colitis and some cases of Colitis are more severe than others. People who suffer from Colitis may experience varying degrees of symptoms. Some patients may experience minor abdominal discomfort. Others, however, can experience intense abdominal pain, fatigue, diarrhea, bloating, cramping and a loss of appetite. Patients suffering from severe Colitis often experience abdominal tenderness, fever, bleeding and weight loss. In some cases of Colitis, ulcers will appear on the surface of the intestine.
Most of the people who suffer from Colitis experience “flare-ups” since the condition usually follows a pattern of increased symptoms and symptom remission. As Colitis progresses, the condition may sometimes lead to more severe complications including excessive bleeding, a hole in the colon, liver disease and even colon cancer.
Colitis can occur for a number of reasons. The most common causes of Colitis include infection, loss of blood supply to the colon, too much collagen or lymphocytic white blood cells in the colon wall and inflammatory bowel disease.
While treatment for Colitis is available, the treatment will vary from patient to patient. In some cases a simple diet change can help alleviate the Colitis symptoms. In severe cases, surgery may be required.
Many of the individuals who suffer from severe Colitis are unable to work due to the symptoms the condition causes. If you are suffering from Colitis and are unable to work due to your condition, you should consider applying for Social Security Disability benefits.
Filing for Social Security Disability with Colitis
When you file an application, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will refer to a published list of medical conditions that qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. Colitis is included in this list of impairments under Section 5, which covers gastrointestinal conditions.
Qualifying for disability benefits due to Colitis can be complicated because of the nature of the condition. Many of the individuals who suffer from Colitis do not experience chronic symptoms. Instead, the symptoms tend to come and go over time. To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits you must be completely disabled for a minimum of twelve months. Because of this, you will need to prove to the SSA that your Colitis condition completely prevents you from working even if the symptoms are not as severe at certain points in time.
Prior to applying for disability benefits you should be seen by a specialist who can help you build your Social Security Disability case. The person who reviews your Social Security Disability application will place more credit in a diagnosis made by a specialist than a diagnosis made by a primary care physician. If your primary care physician has diagnosed you with Colitis, ask for a referral to a specialist so you can further support your Social Security Disability claim.
The examiner who reviews your application will also want to see what treatments you have undergone. It will be very difficult to obtain Social Security Disability benefits if you have not undergone treatment for your Colitis condition. By reviewing your past treatment history and how your condition responded to treatment, the SSA will be better able to make a determination regarding your application.
Colitis and Your Social Security Disability Case
Filing for Social Security Disability can be an overwhelming and complex process. The Social Security Disability application process can also be extensive and time consuming. While many people assume that their claims will be approved within a few short months, the fact of the matter is that the SSA only approves 30 percent of Social Security Disability applications received at the initial stage of the application process. The remaining 70 percent must go on to file an appeal. The appeals process can take months or even years to complete.
Because Colitis cases are very complex, it may be hard to prove that your condition completely prevents you from working. You may want to consider hiring a Social Security Disability attorney to represent you during your disability claim. Your attorney can help you submit your application for Social Security Disability benefits in the best light possible, increasing your chances of an approval at the initial stage of the application process.