Neurological disorders affect the brain, spinal cord and all nerves connected to them. Over 600 neurological disorders have so far been identified, with the most commonly diagnosed nervous system disorders being epilepsy, brain tumors, stroke, Parkinson’s disease and frontotemporal dementia. The Social Security Administration describes 16 neurological conditions in their Blue Book’s Section 11. Some of these conditions include:
- Cerebral palsy
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
- Vascular events impacting the central nervous system
- Anterior poliomyelitis
- Multiple sclerosis
- Myasthenia Gravis
- Peripheral neuropathies
- Syringomyelia (spinal cord cysts)
How Can Someone with a Neurological Disorder Get Disability Benefits?
The SSA determines whether to approve a disability application based on documentation describing how symptoms impair the applicants ability to work. Since some neurological disorders, like unexplained seizures or epilepsy, are episodic in nature, claimants will need physicians and neurologists to draft reports chronicling a sustained history of these episodes.
Diagnostic test results essential for getting approved for Social Security disability due to a neurological condition include angiographies, nerve/muscle biopsies, brain scans (MRIs ,CTs), cerebrospinal fluid analyses, intrathecal contrast-enhanced CT scans and electroencephalographies (EEGs). Other diagnostic test results may also be required depending on the type of neurological condition the SSA is evaluating.
Applications for Social Security disability involving neurological disorders must also show that treatment has not improved symptoms to the point where the applicant can maintain employment. If the SSA finds the condition has not improved after three consecutive months of treatment, they may agree the applicant meets listing requirements and be approved for disability benefits. Alternately, an application may be denied if the claimant’s physician reports improvement significant enough to permit the claimant to earn a living wage.
How Does the Term “Extreme Limitation” Apply to Neurological Disorders?
The SSA defines extreme limitation as the inability to arise from seated positions, keep your balance while standing and walking and use your arms to initiate and finish work activities. A detailed medical assessment of a claimant’s motor functioning skills must be included with the Social Security disability application.
The Law Office of Daniel Berger knows how complicated and time-consuming it is for individuals suffering neurological disorders to gather documentation necessary to apply for disability benefits. With years of experience helping people get approved for disability, our attorneys can also help you expedite your claim and substantially increase your chances of receiving approval without the need to appeal a denial. Call today to schedule a consultation appointment with one of our skilled disability lawyers.