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Asthma and COPD and Social Security Disability Benefits

Lawyer for Social Security Disability Benefits in Illinois

What Is Asthma?

Asthma is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a chronic lung disorder that is marked by recurring episodes of airway obstruction (as from bronchospasm) manifested by labored breathing accompanied especially by wheezing and coughing and by a sense of constriction in the chest, and that is triggered by hyperreactivity to various stimuli (as allergens or rapid change in air temperature).” In other words, your bronchial tubes constrict due to irritation, which can be accompanied by swelling and pain. Asthma attacks can be mild and very irregular or they can be regular and severe. So severe that it could be life-threatening. Our Chicago based law firm has handled a large range of asthma claims.

Unfortunately, there is little evidence showing how to prevent the development of asthma. Currently, the best treatment for people suffering from asthma includes lifestyle changes, medications, and various kinds of therapies including: chiropractic, osteopathic, and many others.

Can I Get Social Security Disability Benefits If I Suffer From Asthma?

Asthma is absolutely recognized by the Social Security Administration! If asthma prevents you from working for at least 12 months, you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits (whether SSDI or SSI). When you apply for disability benefits with asthma, the Social Security Administration will first determine whether your condition is severe enough to meet a listing. If you meet a listing you will be found disabled. If you do not meet a listing, the Social Security Administration will then evaluate your residual functional capacity (the most work that you can do despite your medical condition(s)).

Is There A Specific Listing For Asthma?

The Social Security Administration recognizes asthma under Listing of Impairments 3.03: Asthma. In our experience, it is very rare for a claimant to meet 3.03A. And, 3.03B can be quite difficult to meet as well. This is because there are certain kinds of attacks that the Social Security Administration will not recognize. If you have an asthma attack and can control it by using a nebulizer or inhaler, that attack will not “count” towards the six a year requirement. For your attack to count for disability benefits, the attack must be controlled in the ER or by a doctor. For this reason, while asthma is commonly seen on disability applications, rarely does it fall within the severity the Social Security Administration requires to meet the Listing.

Listings 3.02 and 3.03 can be found on the Social Security Administration website. However, because most of the listings are structured using medical terminology, it can be quite difficult to know whether you will meet them. If you or a family member suffers from severe asthma and/or COPD and cannot work and want to know more about whether you might qualify for Social Security disability benefits (either SSDI or SSI), contact Pearson Disability Law, LLC at 312-999-0999.

If I Do Not Meet The Listing, Is There Another Way To Get Social Security Disability Benefits?

Yes! If you do not meet Listing 3.03 and asthma is preventing you from working, you may still qualify for Social Security disability benefits.

The Social Security Administration will proceed with your case by evaluating your Residual Functional Capacity. To do this, the Administration will determine the most amount of work that you can do despite your limitations. They do this by dividing “work” into four different categories: heavy, medium, light, and sedentary. It is worth noting that there is sometimes a fifth category that is recognized for very heavy work; however, very heavy work is scarcely used. Whether a claimant wins his or her disability claim is greatly affected by which category he or she is ultimately put into. Being put into a lower category increases the likelihood that a claim is approved for Social Security disability benefits.

You are not alone. Call us now for a FREE consultation 312-999-0999

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