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

Applying for disability with Glaucoma

First, a bit about the condition

Glaucoma is not just one eye disorder but a group of eye diseases, which cause a loss of retinal ganglion cells. The loss of retinal ganglion cells results in optic neuropathy, and the loss of visual fields. The danger of glaucoma lies in its gradual loss of visual fields over a long period of time.

Once visual fields have been damaged they can never be recovered, consequently untreated glaucoma may lead to blindness.

Studies indicate that African Americans and diabetics are about three times more likely to be affected by glaucoma. Asians are more likely to be affected by angle closure glaucoma. In fact, Inuits are twenty to forty times more likely than Caucasians to suffer from primary angle closure glaucoma. Even the use of drugs such as steroids can cause glaucoma.

Once of the most common myths about glaucoma is that although intraocular eye pressure is a risk factor for glaucoma, there is no certain threshold that will trigger glaucoma.

For instance, some individuals who have relatively low eye pressures may have nerve damage, while others may have extremely high eye pressure with no nerve damage from glaucoma. Consequently, regular eye exams are necessary to detect increases in eye pressure, and an ophthalmologist should monitor elevated eye pressure to prevent permanent optic nerve damage.

Filing for disability with Glaucoma

If you are applying for Social Security Disability or SSI on the basis of glaucoma, there are some things you will need to know to help your claim get approved.

Firstly, you have to either not be working or have reduced you earnings so that they are under the SGA limit. You can apply anytime, however your claim will be denied without a medical decision if you performing SGA.

Secondly, you must have a severe impairment that can be or is medically documented through objective medical evidence.

If both of these criteria are met, you should apply for Social Security Disability if you have glaucoma that causes severe restrictions to your ability to perform daily work activities including work activity.

Since glaucoma affects visual fields, Social Security uses impairment listing 2.03, Contraction of the visual field in the better eye, with:

A. The widest diameter subtending an angle around the point of fixation no greater than 20 degrees; OR

B. A mean deviation of –22 or worse, determined by automated static threshold perimetry. OR

C. Visual field efficiency of 20% or less as determined by kinetic perimetry.

Social Security will require certain testing to evaluate the affect severity of your glaucoma. Social Security will accept the results of:

A) Humphrey Field Analyzer that uses the white size III Goldmann stimuli and a 31.5 apostilb white background. The stimuli location must be no more than 6 degrees apart horizontally or vertically. Measurements must be reported on standard chart and include a description of the size and intensity of the test stimulus.

B) Humphrey “SSA Test Kinetic” or Goldmann perimetry instead of the automated static threshold.

Because of limitations in this testing, this test is unable to detect limitations in the central visual field. If your visual disorder has progressed to the point of significant limitation in the central visual field, they will not use the automated kinetic perimetry to evaluate your visual field loss.

Social Security will not accept visual field screening tests, such as confrontation tests, tangent screen tests, or automate static screening tests to evaluate and determine if you impairment meets or medically equal a listing or to evaluation your residual functional capacity. However, Social Security will accept them if they are normal to determine if your glaucoma is severe when these tests are consistent with other medical evidence in your file.

From my experience as a disability examiner, we often had to order these tests for disability applicants due to the specific requirements used by Social Security to evaluate the severity of vision impairments. You should not be concerned, as the Social Security will pay for any kind of examination they need for their medical determination.

Essential Questions

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?

Related Body System Impairments:

Blepharospasm and Filing for Disability
Glaucoma and Filing for Disability
Macular Degeneration and Filing for Disability
Meniere's Disease and Filing for Disability
Optic Neuritis and Filing for Disability
Tinnitus and Filing for Disability
Vertigo and Filing for Disability
Glaucoma, Social Security Disability, and Applying for Benefits
File for disability or SSI in Pennsylvania
SSI Disability in Pennsylvania
Permanent Social Security Disability Pennsylvania

These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

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?

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.