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How can I meet the medical requirements for Social Security Disability if I have lupus?

Social Security impairment listing 14.02 outlines the medical requirements (criteria) for approval for disability benefits with lupus.

Generally, but not always, Social Security requires the medical evidence to show that your lupus fulfills the criteria in the present “Criteria for the Classification of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus” in the American College of Rheumatology.

Listing 14.02 Systemic lupus erythematosus with:

*Two or more organs/body systems involved, with:
*One of the organ or body systems involved to at least a moderate level of severity, and at least two constitutional symptom or signs.

Constitutional signs or symptoms might include: severe fatigue, malaise, weight loss (involuntary), or fever.

Major organ or body system involvement might include: Respiratory (pleuritis, pneumonitis), hematologic (anemia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia), cardiovascular (endocariditis, myocarditis, pericarditis, vasculitis), neurologic (seizures), mental (anxiety, fluctuating cognition (lupus fog), mood disorders, organic brain syndrome, psychosis), immune system (inflammatory arthritis).


Repeated appearances of SLE (lupus), with at least two of the constitutional symptoms or signs (listed above) and one of the following at the marked (severe) level:

1. Limited activities of daily living.
2. Limited social functioning.
3. Limitations in timely completion of tasks due to problems with concentration, persistence, or pace.

In order to be approved for Social Security Disability for lupus, you must meet or equal the criteria listed above. If you do not meet or equal the lupus listing, you may still be approved for disability with a medical vocational allowance. Medical vocational allowances require an evaluation of your limitations, age, education, work history, and the transferability of your work skills.

Related: How does Social Security consider lupus as a disability?

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These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

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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.