How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay
Filing for Social Security Disability with Post Polio
Post-polio syndrome affects individuals who were diagnosed with poliomyelitis and recovered from the disease. Generally, post-polio syndrome does not occur for at least twenty years following the initial bout of poliomyelitis. Post-Polio syndrome is not a recurrence of polio; rather it is a syndrome, which for unknown reasons affects individuals who had polio.
Individuals with post-polio syndrome are very difficult to diagnose due to how non-specific the symptoms are. Physical symptoms of post-polio syndrome include increased muscular weakness, significant pain, and fatigue; in fact many individuals with post-polio syndrome are initially thought to have Lou Gehrig’s disease because of the severe muscle weakness.
Many individuals with post-polio syndrome also suffer from cognitive deficits, including a condition known as brain fog, and memory loss. However, once again, these symptoms are difficult to discern from the aging process in general. Treatment for post-polio syndrome is for the most part palliative. For instance post-polio syndrome sufferers may have to use leg braces and orthotics to help with muscle weakness. And due to the progressive nature of the syndrome, many individuals with post-polio syndrome will have to used motorized wheelchairs or scooters (hand powered wheelchairs do not work well due to arm weakness).
As a former disability examiner who worked on evaluating Social Security Disability and SSI disability cases for the social security administration, I can state that I did not see many cases in which post polio was listed as an allegation (i.e. as a medical impairment on a disability application). For this reason, I tend to think that disability examiners, in general, do not have much familiarity with this condition or the implications of it.
Approvals for disability on the basis of post polio can be made via the listings, or through the medical vocational allowance process. In the latter process, the individual's medical history and work history are both evaluated to see if a return to work activity is possible, either a return to one's past work, or a switch to some form of other work.
In this process, the name/diagnosis of a condition is not the overriding concern. The process focuses on evaluating a claimant’s functional restrictions. If the determination is made that a claimant’s residual functional capacity (what a person can still do despite their physical or mental limitations) eliminates the ability to return to past work, then the next step in the disability evaluation process is to determine whether or not the claimant can perform some other type of work.
“Other work”, however, does not include every type of work. Obviously, this would be unfair to individuals whose work skills are not transferable to other types of work, as well as unfair to individuals with limited education, who are significantly older, or have significant physical or mental limitations. With these factors in mind, whether or not a claimant can “be sent to other work” will depend on the following criteria: a claimant’s age, a claimant’s level of education, a claimant’s job skills, and a claimant’s functional capacity (as determined by an evaluation of a claimant’s medical records).
Being approved for Post Polio through a listing
According to the Social Security Administration in its evaluation of postpolio published in the POMS, or program operations manual system, "Postpolio sequelae" may be the basis for a finding of “disability. According to the POMS, the most common residual effect of this infection is motor weakness as demonstrated by 1. observable weakness, 2. muscle atrophy, and reduced peripheral reflexes. As POMS states, "These obvious clinical findings are used to document the history of poliomyelitis".
For this reason, the section of the SSA listings that applies to a listing-level evaluation of Postpolio is listing 11.11 which may be met if the medical evidence so provides.
Listing 11.11, Anterior Poliomyelitis, reads as follows:
11.11 Anterior poliomyelitis. With:
A. Persistent difficulty with swallowing or breathing; or
B. Unintelligible speech; or
C. Disorganization of motor function as described in 11.04B.
The 11.04 criteria mentioned in item C is the listing for CVAs (cerebrovascular accidents), otherwise known as strokes. That listing reads as follows:
11.04 Central nervous system vascular accident. With one of the following more than 3 months post-vascular accident:
A. Sensory or motor aphasia resulting in ineffective speech or communication; or
B. Significant and persistent disorganization of motor function in two extremities, resulting in sustained disturbance of gross and dexterous movements, or gait and station
What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?
Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?
How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?
Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved
What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?
What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?
Receiving a Disability Award Letter
Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability
Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI
Applying for disability in your state
Most popular topics on SSDRC.com
Social Security Disability SSI Questions
The listings, list of disabling impairments
Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?
Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials
How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?
How to apply for disability for a child or children
Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application
Filing for disability - when to file
How to apply for disability - where to apply
Qualifications for disability benefits
How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits
Qualifying for Disability - The Process
How to get disability for depression
Getting disability for fibromyalgia
SSI disability for children with ADHD
What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability
Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips
More Social Security Disability SSI Questions
Social Security Disability SSI definitions
What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?
New and featured pages on SSDRC.com
Who can help me file for disability?
The list of impairments provides approval criteria
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and SSD benefits?
Can you apply for disability for multiple health problems?
Is the Medical Criteria to Get disability Benefits hard?
Do you have to have a Permanent Disability for Social Security?
These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits
Can you get temporary Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
Permanent Social Security Disability
What is the difference between Social Security Disability and SSI?
Who is eligible for SSI disability?
Can I Be Eligible For SSI And Social Security Disability At The Same Time?
What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?
Applying for Disability - How long does it take to get Social Security Disability or SSI benefits?
What happens if I file a disability application and it is denied by a disability examiner or Judge?
Filing and applying for disability in Texas
For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.
The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.
To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.