Multiple Sclerosis is rarely fatal, but is a potentially disabling disease that results in permanent damage of the spinal cord. The brain may also become affected due to the damage caused to the myelin sheath that covers the nerves in the nervous system (spinal cord + brain).
The exact cause of the disorder is unknown, yet is thought to be an auto immune disease caused by the body's own response to boost up its immune system. The early symptoms of the disorder include muscle weakness, fatigue, blurred vision and involuntary contractions of the muscle which may often be confused with other types of diseases with similar symptoms.
Disability Listings for Multiple Sclerosis by SSA
The SSA classifies autoimmune disorders as impairments cause by the body's own response directed against its own tissues, resulting in chronic, multisystem impairments that can significantly affect a person's ability to lead a normal life and perform work under substantial gainful activity, SGA.
Although Multiple Sclerosis can strike mostly between ages 20 to 40, it can also strike anytime during a person's lifetime. Also, the common symptoms may include but are not limited to:
- -Slurred speech
- -Fatigue or long periods of tiredness
- -Dizziness or nauseau
- -Tingling sensations or pain in parts of your body
- -Problems with sexual, bowel and/or bladder function
In addition to that, patients with MS may also experience visionary impairments including:
- -Partial or complete loss of vision, usually in one eye at a time, often with pain during eye movement
- -Prolonged double vision
- -Blurry vision
And symptoms affecting motor functions limiting the movement such as:
- -Numbing or weakening of one or more limbs that typically occurs on one side of the body at a time, or the legs and trunk
- -Electric-shock sensations that occur with certain neck movements, especially bending the neck forward (Lhermitte sign)
- -Tremor, lack of coordination or unsteady walk
Although MS is untreatable completely, it can be made better using certain medications, diet and physiotherapy. As each person and his MS condition would be different, the relapse time, symptoms and effect of MS would also differ. If your MS limits your cognitive or adaptive functioning severely, then you may qualify for SSDI right away.
In order to qualify disability benefits for MS, the SSA has listed that you meet the following criteria in both Para A and Para B:
Disorganization of motor function in two extremities, resulting in an extreme limitation in the ability to stand up from a seated position, balance while standing or walking, or use the upper extremities.
- -Market limitation or extreme difficulty in understanding, remembering, or applying information
- -Market limitation or extreme difficulty in interacting with others
- -Market limitation or extreme difficulty in concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace
- -Market limitation or extreme difficulty in adapting or managing oneself
Qualifying for Disability for Multiple Sclerosis
Meeting the above requirements and criteria might not be enough to win the SSDI benefits for Multiple Sclerosis. You must be able to show medical documentation and other evidence (doctor's reports, hospital records, treatments, symptoms, what worked and what didn't, third person testimonies etc) to prove to the SSA that your condition is indeed disabling.
If the SSA finds out that you are able to perform work in another capacity, then you might be denied benefits. Hence, it is important that your doctor's fills in the Residual Capacity Form, RFC will all the symptoms and details without any omissions. However, be careful that you are not feigning anything as that might disqualify you from SSDI benefits forever.
You can consult our disability lawyers for more personalized guidance for filing and qualifying disability benefits for multiple sclerosis.