Guillain Barre Syndrome and Social Security Disability

Guillain Barre Syndrome, or GBS, is a very serious autoimmune disorder that causes your immune system to attack your nervous system. GBS results in widespread tingling and weakness of extremities which can lead to pain and even paralysis. The symptoms of this condition may include:

  • A prickling or tingling feeling
  • Weakness
  • Significant trouble standing or walking
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Difficulty breathing

Applying for Social Security Disability Benefits Due to Guillain Barre Syndrome

Depending on the cause or severity of the syndrome, the symptoms may go away after only a few weeks of treatment. However, there are many instances in which this condition can last months or even years. This is especially true for people who have GBS in conjunction with another condition, such as AIDS or lupus.

If your symptoms are severe and long-term, it can become impossible to work. If you experience chronic pain, respiratory issues, limited mobility, or other restrictions, you may be qualified to receive Social Security Disability benefits.

Meeting a Social Security Disability Blue Book Listing

The Social Security Administration’s (SSA) blue book explains how the SSA evaluates different conditions to determine an individual’s eligibility for benefits. The symptoms caused by Guillain Barre Syndrome can be evaluated under a number of different listings. If your GBS has been caused by another condition, such as lymphoma, AIDS, or lupus, you may qualify based on the requirements for these conditions.

However, there are severe symptoms commonly caused by GBS that have their own listings, such as:

  • The major dysfunction of a joint – You may qualify for SSD benefits if Guillain Barre Syndrome has caused damage or discomfort in a major joint, making it difficult for you to walk or use your arms or hands to complete tasks.
  • Chronic respiratory insufficiency – If GBS has caused respiratory problems, significantly limiting intake of oxygen, you may be eligible for benefits.

In the unlikely event that you cannot find a listing that matches any of your specific GBS signs or symptoms, you may still receive approval for SSD benefits if you can otherwise provide evidence that the condition makes it impossible for you to perform the functions that would be needed to do any type of job.

Medical Evidence

When applying for SSD benefits for Guillain Barre Syndrome, it is essential to provide thorough medical documentation that provides evidence of the severity of your symptoms, including:

  • Physician’s note detailing your symptoms and prognosis
  • History of treatments and your response to those treatments
  • Imaging reports, such as x-rays or CT scans, showing damage to major joints
  • History of hospitalizations related to GBS symptoms

Hiring a Social Security Disability Attorney Before You Apply

Even though Guillain Barre Syndrome can be an extremely limiting condition, many people with this syndrome are rejected for SSD benefits every year. These individuals likely did not receive approval because their application lacked vital information or documentation. The SSA follows very strict guidelines that must be met.

If you are unable to perform at any type of job due to GBS, and you need SSD benefits as soon as possible, you should seek the advice of an experienced Social Security Disability attorney. He or she can provide the knowledge you need in order to increase your chance of approval.