Can I Qualify for Disability Benefits with a Genitourinary Disorder?
When your health is compromised by a serious injury or disease, it can become physically impossible to maintain steady employment. Every year, pain, weakness, fatigue, and other medical issues prohibit millions of Americans from working. To help counterbalance this issue, the SSA (Social Security Administration) offers qualified applicants monthly disability benefits in the form of SSI and SSDI. If you have a genitourinary disorder, you may be able to qualify for benefits as well. But how does the SSA evaluate urogenital conditions?
Every year, the SSA receives millions of claims citing a wide variety of disabilities, from heart disease, to anxiety, to arthritis. While each condition must obviously be evaluated against different and specific criteria, there is also a set of generic requirements which apply to all applicants, regardless of the disability cited on a claim. (There are a few rare exceptions, such as extremely serious conditions which can be “fast-tracked” through the Compassionate Allowances program.)
In order to qualify, there are several broad financial and medical requirements you should be able to pass:
- Your income should not exceed a limit of $721 per month for SSI.
- Your impairment should have lasted or be expected to last for at least 12 months, or be expected to result in death.
- Your impairment must be so severe that it prohibits you from working. This means you cannot work at your customary job, or at an alternative job.
If you are applying for SSI (Supplemental Security Income), you must be able to demonstrate financial need. If you are applying for SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance), you must have earned a certain total of work credits during your employed periods.
How Genitourinary Disorders Are Evaluated by the SSA
Sometimes referred to as the urogenital system, the genitourinary system consists of the urinary system together with the reproductive system. Genitourinary issues can affect anyone, regardless of age or gender, and can have debilitating health effects which interfere with employment.
These conditions are contained under Section 6.00, which covers:
- Impairment of Renal Function (6.02)
- Nephrotic Syndrome (6.06)
Renal impairment can be “due to any chronic renal disease,” provided the 12-month duration requirement is met. Examples of underlying diseases include:
- Chronic Glomerulonephritis
- Diabetic Nephropathy
- Chronic Obstructive Uropathy
This impairment must be accompanied by any one of the following:
- “Chronic hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis.”
- “Kidney transplantation.”
- “Persistent elevation of serum creatinine.” This, in turn, should be accompanied by:
- “Renal osteodystrophy.”
- “Persistent motor or sensory neuropathy.”
- “Persistent fluid overload syndrome.”
- “Persistent anorexia with weight loss determined by body mass index (BMI) of less than 18.0.”
While renal impairment can be caused by various underlying conditions, the SSA evaluates nephrotic syndrome caused explicitly by Glomerular Disease. Nephrotic syndrome should:
- Last for at least three months, despite following the prescribed treatment.
- Be accompanied by anasarca. (Anasarca refers to a “generalized massive edema,” or swelling.)
Both of the above conditions should be met by claimants.
When reviewing claims related to urogenital disorders, the SSA looks at different types of medical evidence, such as:
- Treatment Records (e.g. response, side effects, duration)
- Lab Test/Clinical Results (e.g. dialysis)
- Hospitalization Records
- Biopsy Tests
The more comprehensive and detailed your medical evidence is, the stronger your claim will be. The SSA is primarily concerned with recent documentation, from within the past 90 days.
If you have a genitourinary issue, you may be a good candidate for SSI or SSDI benefits. To schedule a free and confidential legal consultation with an experienced disability attorney, call the law offices of Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates at (609) 755-3115 in New Jersey or (215) 701-6519 in Pennsylvania today. You can also contact us online.