Macroglobulinemia can be a frustrating and debilitating condition to live with. The symptoms of the disease can interfere with an individual's ability to perform routine daily tasks, let alone maintain the responsibilities that come along with full-time employment. When an individual is no longer able to work due to this disabling condition, the resulting lack of income can significant financial stress and have a serious impact on their life. Fortunately, Social Security Disability benefits may be able to help. If you have been diagnosed with macroglobulinemia, the following information will help you understand how the Social Security Disability claim process works and how the Social Security Administration reviews claims that are based on this particular diagnosis.
Macroglobulinemia Condition and Symptoms
Macroglobulinemia results from a condition that is known as lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma. The disease is actually a form of cancer that causes an overproduction of the blood's IgM, which causes it to become too thick. This condition, known as hyperviscosity, makes it harder for the blood to flow through the smaller blood vessels of the body.
The symptoms of macroglobulinemia may vary from case to case depending on the severity of the condition and how far the disease has progressed. Common symptoms that are associated with macroglobulinemia include: bleeding gums, dizziness, easy bruising, blurred vision, fatigue, headaches, mood changes, nosebleeds, numbness, rash and weight loss. In some cases, macroglobulinemia may also result in a bluish discoloration of the skin, swollen glands and pain in the flanks.
While there is no cure for macroglobulinemia, there are treatments that can make the disease more manageable. In some cases, plasmapheresis may be conducted to reduce the high level of IgM in the blood. Drug therapy may also be prescribed, including steroids and chemotherapy. In some cases, blood transfusions may be needed to manage the levels of IgM in the blood.
Filing for Social Security Disability with Macroglobulinemia
While the Social Security Administration's Blue Book of Medical Listings does not have a specific listing for macroglobulinemia, the condition is noted in Section 13.00 of the Medical Listings. According to these published guidelines, the Social Security Administration will look at how the disease was diagnosed, as well as whether or not the condition has been confirmed by electrophoresis or immunoelectrophoresis when evaluating the Claim. When determining whether or not an individual qualifies for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income due to a case of Macroglobulinemia, the Social Security Administration will evaluate the resulting impairment under the criteria of Sections 7.02, 7.06, 7.08 of the Medical Listings, or any other affected body system.
What this means is that you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits due to a case of macroglobulinemia, but you will need to prove, beyond a doubt, that your condition completely prevents you from performing any type of work activity. This means that you will need to include a complete copy of your medical records (including lab results and treatment histories) along with your claim for Social Security Disability benefits.
When you are filling out your disability claim forms, make sure that you are very detailed when providing your answers to the questions that are asked. The answers that you provide will help the adjudicator who reviews your file understand the extent of your disability and whether or not you are able to perform any type of work activity.
You may also want to consider consulting with a disability attorney or advocate prior to submitting your claim for Social Security Disability benefits. These professionals can go over your application paperwork with you, pointing out any potential weak spots and increasing your chances of an approval at the initial stage of the application process.
Macroglobulinemia and Your Social Security Disability Case
It is important to note that nearly 70 percent of the disability claims that are received each year are denied by the Social Security Administration. If yours is among the claims that are denied, do not give up. What you will need to do is consult with a Social Security Disability lawyer and file a Social Security Disability appeal.
The disability appeal process can be complex and lengthy. Most appeals consist of two stages, including a Request for Reconsideration and a disability hearing. It is crucial that you have proper representation during this hearing if you want the best chance of overturning the SSA's denial of your Social Security Disability benefits. The good news is that nearly two-thirds of disability hearings are decided in the favor of the disability applicant. Your chances of a favorable hearing outcome are significantly higher with proper representation.
To learn more about filing for Social Security Disability benefits with macroglobulinemia or to learn more about working with a Social Security Disability advocate or attorney, simoply fill out the form for a free evaluation of your SSD case.