Social Security Disability Definitions
Social Security Disability and SSI Overview
The Requirements for Disability
Social Security Disability and SSI Applications
Tips and Advice for Disability Claims
How long does Disability take?
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Disability Denial
Social Security Disability and SSI Denials
Social Security Disability and SSI Appeals
Social Security Mental Disability Benefits
Disability Benefits offered through Social Security
Benefits through SSI disability
Disability Benefits for Children
Disability Qualifications and How to Qualify
Social Security Disability and Working
Winning your Disability Benefits
Social Security Disability Back Pay Benefits
Social Security Disability SSI Awards and Award Notices
Disability Lawyers and Hiring an Attorney
Social Security Disability SSI List of Conditions
What is considered a Disabling condition by Social Security?
Social Security Disability SSI and Medical Evidence
Filing for Disability Benefits
Eligibility for Disability Benefits
SSDRC authored by Tim Moore
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Facts about Leukemia and Filing for Disability
1. Leukemia is a type of cancer that affects the blood, typically starting with white blood cells that help fight infection. Bone marrow produces white blood cells, which grow and divide in order to meet the body's needs. With leukemia, the bone marrow produces extra white blood cells that do not perform the proper infection fighting functions.
2. It is often thought that only children develop leukemia, but there are many different types and subtypes with only a few that affect children.
3. Common symptoms that occur among all types of leukemia include fever, sweating and chills, fatigue and weakness, frequent sickness and infection, loss of appetite and weight, swollen lymph nodes, enlarged liver or spleen, bruising and bleeding easily, becoming short of breath with mild activity, red spots on the skin, bone pain or bone tenderness.
4. Symptoms vary based on the type of leukemia, and they are often easy to mistake for a bad cold or the flu. The number and severity of symptoms varies, due to varying numbers of abnormal blood cells and the part of the body where they build up.
5. Acute leukemia occurs when affected blood cells are immature and cannot function properly. These blood cells divide very quickly, causing the cancer to progress more rapidly.
6. Chronic leukemia occurs when affected blood cells are mature, so they function normally before dividing and accumulating, meaning the cancer progresses more slowly and may not be noticeable for years.
7. Lymphocytic leukemia affects the cells that form the tissues that make up the immune system. Myelogenous leukemia affects the cells that later turn blood cells.
8. Acute myelogenous leukemia is the most common and occurs among all ages. There are other types of leukemia, however, that are only common among specific groups of people. Acute lymphocytic leukemia is most common in children, while chronic lymphocytic leukemia almost always affects adults, usually Russian and Eastern European Jewish people.
Can you qualify for disability benefits with this condition?
Whether or not you qualify for disability and, as a result, are approved for disability benefits will depend entirely on the information obtained from your medical records. This includes whatever statements may have been obtained from your treating physician (a doctor who has a history of treating your condition and is, therefore, qualified to comment as to your condition and prognosis).
It will also depend on the information obtained from your vocational, or work, history if you are an adult, or academic records if you are a minor-age child. The important thing to keep in mind is that the social security administration does not award benefits based on simply having a condition, but, instead, will base an approval or denial on the extent to which a condition causes functional limitations. Functional limitations can be great enough to make work activity not possible (or, for a child, make it impossible to engage in age-appropriate activities).
Why are so many disability cases lost at the disability application and reconsideration appeal levels?
Speaking as a former Disability Claims Examiner, I can state that there are several reasons:
1) Social Security makes no attempt to obtain a statement from a claimant's treating physician. By contrast, at the hearing level, a claimant and his or her disability attorney will generally obtain and present this type of statement to a judge;
2) Prior to the hearing level, a claimant will not have the opportunity to explain how their condition limits them, nor will their attorney or representative have the opportunity to make a presentation based on the evidence of the case. At the hearing level, of course, this is exactly what happens. And a number of disability representatives will also take such steps even earlier, at the reconsideration appeal level;
3) Disability judges, unlike disability examiners who decides cases at the first two levels of the system, can make independent decisions without being overturned by immediate supervisors--which happens frequently.
Return to: Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions
Topics and Questions
SSD and SSI are Federal Programs
The title II Social Security Disability and title 16 SSI Disability programs operate under federal guidelines and, therefore, the program requirements--medical and non-medical--apply to all states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Recent approval and denial statistics for various states can be viewed here:
Social Security Disability, SSI Approval and Denial Statistics by state
Special Section: Disability Lawyers and unnecessary claim denials