Psoriasis and Social Security Disability

Psoriasis is a fairly common chronic skin condition that results in an accelerated buildup of skin cells. The result in this overproduction of skin cells is skin that is white, scaly, and itchy. While for some people, psoriasis is just an irritation, others experience more severe symptoms, including:

  • Inflammation, swelling, and redness
  • Joint pain
  • Arthritis
  • Infections of the skin
  • Burning sensation on the skin

Applying for Social Security Disability Benefits Due to Psoriasis

If your psoriasis symptoms are mild, working is likely not a problem for you. However, severe psoriasis symptoms that cause intense pain, serious infections, or mobility problems can greatly restrict your ability to perform at any type of job. This is when it would be necessary to apply for Social Security Disability benefits in order to support yourself financially.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has what is commonly referred to as their blue book. This book contains numerous medical listings, as well as symptoms that would possibly make individuals eligible for SSD benefits. When applying due to psoriasis, your symptoms would be evaluated under the dermatitis listing in the blue book. In order to receive approval, you must meet the requirements in this listing.

Qualifying for SSD Benefits Under the Dermatitis Listing

The guidelines for eligibility under the dermatitis listing are fairly simple. You must first receive a psoriasis diagnosis, or any other dermatitis diagnosis, and have experienced extensive skin lesions that have persisted for at least three months. It is also required that you show evidence that you have made efforts to have the lesions treated, but they are not responding.

The SSA defines extensive skin lesions as:

  • Lesions on both palms that restrict your ability to use your hands
  • Lesions on both feet that restrict your ability to stand or walk
  • Lesions that make it difficult for you to move at least two extremities, meaning your legs, arms, or a combination.
  • Lesions on the perineum and/or surrounding the groin.

If you do not have excessive skin lesions, but suffer from other severe symptoms, such as arthritis, because of your psoriasis, you may be able to qualify under a different listing, such as the inflammatory arthritis listing or the listing for the major dysfunction of a joint. It is also possible to complete a residual functional capacity assessment in order to demonstrate your limitations.

It is important to include all medical documentation and doctor’s opinions related to your disability.

More info on submitting medical documentation

Hiring a Disability Attorney

It is important to choose a highly qualified and experienced attorney that will help you avoid common mistakes, and create a very strong application. Disability Attorneys work on a contingency basis and are not paid unless you are awarded benefits.

More Info on Hiring an Attorney