Inflammatory Arthritis: Social Security Disability
Inflammatory arthritis is the general term for conditions of the joints that involve the immune system and inflammation. This can include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Inflammatory arthritis typically causes pain and swelling in the joints. Most patients will experience symptoms in multiple joints. In evaluating Inflammatory Arthritis and your eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), the Social Security Administration (SSA) seeks to establish one or more of the following:
A. Persistent inflammation or persistent deformity of:
- One or more major peripheral weight-bearing joints resulting in the inability to ambulate effectively; In other words, impacting your legs making it challenging to walk. Or…
- One or more major peripheral joints in each upper extremity resulting in the inability to perform fine and gross movements effectively. In other words, limited ability to grasp, or write with your hands or move your arms freely.
B. Inflammation or deformity in one or more major peripheral joints with:
- Involvement of two or more organs/body systems with one of the organs/body systems involved at least to a moderate level of severity; In other words substantial limitation in either your arms or your legs as well as limitations in another part of your body. And..
- At least two of the constitutional symptoms or signs (severe fatigue, fever, malaise, or involuntary weight loss).
C. Ankylosing spondylitis or other spondyloarthropathies, with:
- Ankylosis (fixation) of the dorsolumbar or cervical spine as shown by appropriate medically acceptable imaging and measured on physical examination at 45° or more of flexion from the vertical position (zero degrees); or…
- Ankylosis (fixation) of the dorsolumbar or cervical spine as shown by appropriate medically acceptable imaging and measured on physical examination at 30° or more of flexion (but less than 45°) measured from the vertical position (zero degrees), and involvement of two or more organs/body systems with one of the organs/body systems involved to at least a moderate level of severity.
Note: These are technical measurements you would receive from your physician. Freedom can help you understand if you are likely to meet the above.
D. Repeated manifestations of inflammatory arthritis, with at least two of the constitutional symptoms or signs (severe fatigue, fever, malaise, or involuntary weight loss) and one of the following at the marked level:
- Limitation of activities of daily living.
- Limitation in maintaining social functioning.
- Limitation in completing tasks in a timely manner due to deficiencies in concentration, persistence, or pace.
In other words, the limitations need to adversely impact your daily life.
If you feel your Arthritis has or will prevent you from working for at least twelve consecutive months, and believe you deserve Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, call Freedom Disability today at (866) 761-5942 for a free evaluation with one of our professional Disability Advocates. Our Advocates can help determine if your condition is likely to result in a successful SSDI application. If you do qualify, we can provide you with the assistance that you need to get the benefits that you deserve. At Freedom we are experienced in submitting Back Pain Disability applications and will assist you in gathering all necessary medical documents to support your claim.
The foregoing information is based on published materials from the Social Security Administration (“Disability Evaluation Under Social Security”). It is meant to serve as an introduction to some of the factors used by the SSA in evaluating cases. It is no way comprehensive. While Freedom Disability can help you prepare an effective application for benefits, only the SSA can determine whether or not you qualify. For more information call Freedom today at (866) 761-5942.