Chapter : What Are The Symptoms And Signs Of Peripheral Neuropathy
Distal motor symptoms in your upper extremities may include impaired fine hand coordination. Such symptoms can leave you are struggling to type or you find it difficult to perform certain tasks such as turning the keys to lock a door, or opening jars. Distal motor symptoms in your lower extremities can be experienced as foot slapping, toe scuffing or frequent tripping.
Other motor symptoms may include muscle shrinking, painful cramps, and uncontrolled twitching.
Furthermore, autonomic neuropathies have symptoms that correlate to the anatomic site of nerve damage as follows:
- gastrointestinal symptoms
Qualifying Pursuant To The Blue Book
In order to qualify for Social Security disability pursuant to Section 12.15 , you must have medical documentation of all of the following:
Exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or violence.
Subsequent involuntary re-experiencing of the traumatic event .
Avoidance of external reminders of the event.
Disturbance in mood or behavior.
Increases in arousal and reactivity .
Additionally, one of the following must be true:
You must have an extreme limitation of one, or a marked limitation of two, of the following areas of mental functioning: understanding, remembering, or applying information interacting with others concentrating, persisting, or maintaining pace or adapting or managing yourself.
Your PTSD must be serious and persistent. That means that you have a medically documented history of PTSD over a period of at least two years and there is evidence of: medical treatment, mental health therapy, psychosocial support, or a highly structured setting that is ongoing and that diminishes the symptoms and signs of your mental disorder and marginal adjustment or minimal capacity to adapt to changes in your environment or to demands that are not already part of your daily life.
If you cant meet these exact requirements then you will not qualify for Social Security disability pursuant to Section 12.15.
How To Apply For Ssdi Benefits For Ptsd
To prove eligibility, the Social Security Administration will review your medical records and take into consideration various types of information related to your PTSD condition. Our legal team can help you work to prove that your mental impairment satisfies the legal requirements to establish entitlement to disability benefits.
Information that will be considered includes:
- When you were diagnosed with a post-traumatic stress disorder
- How long you have been undergoing treatment
- Treatments and prescription medications you are taking
- Other medical conditions you have
- Your expected prognosis
At Coats & Todd, we serve clients throughout the entire Dallas-Fort Worth metro area to help them obtain the disability benefits that they deserve.
To speak to one of our Dallas-Fort Worth Social Security disability attorneys about your case, call our office at 972-671-9922 or contact us online to request an initial consultation.
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Applying For Disability Benefits For Ptsd Using The Medical
The majority of disability benefit cases involving post-traumatic stress disorder are not considered serious enough to last for the period of time required under the listing. In this case, you may use the medical-vocational allowance to help you obtain the disability benefits you need.
To qualify under the medical-vocational allowance, a mental consultant for theSocial Security Administration must deem your symptoms as serious enough to prevent you from working, even though your condition does not meet the requirements under the listing for post-traumatic stress disorder. For example, if you have been experiencing issues with your concentration, or have developed poor sleeping habits that cause you chronic fatigue, these limitations may interfere with your ability to work or keep a job.
If you suffer from PTSD along with other mental disorders or physical limitations, you will have a better chance of being successful with your application for disability benefits. This is particularly true if you are aged 55 or older, have little education, or no prior history of gainful employment.
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Chapter : What Are The Treatments For Peripheral Neuropathy
- Neuropathy treatment includes medication for pain, antiseizure/nerve pain medications, and antidepressants
- Surgery is typically not an option
- Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation often prescribed for pain
- Narcotic pain medications often not effective
Addressing the underlying cause is a key in the treatment plan of peripheral neuropathy. When the cause is treated or corrected, improvement of the neuropathy symptoms will be observed as the nerves will have a chance to heal and regenerate.
Medication is the primary mode to manage the sensory symptoms of neuropathy. Prescription medications for neuropathy may include:
- Antidepressants such as Nortriptyline
- Anticonvulsants such as Carbamazepine
Over-the-counter pain medications, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, can help relieve mild symptoms. Topical treatment such as anesthetics or heating creams containing Capsaicin can also be effective in relieving some of peripheral neuropathy symptoms.
Additionally, medications can be used to manage autonomic symptoms, for example, blood pressure medications to help manage orthostatic hypotension.
Non/surgical treatments include physiotherapy to help improve muscle weakness or nerve compression issues. Mechanical aids such as splints and braces could also be beneficial in treating some of the motor symptoms. Other complementary therapies such as acupuncture, massage and psychotherapy can assist in helping individuals cope with chronic sensory symptoms.
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Supporting Medical Records + Clear And Specific Description Of Symptoms = Good Chance For Favorable Decision
Whether we present a listing argument, or a functional capacity argument or both, we will need what Social Security calls a longitudinal treatment record. This means that there should be on-going and consistent treatment with a psychologist, psychiatrist or mental health counselor. In addition, we will need to practice your presentation of symptoms until you are able to clearly and descriptively describe what you are going through.
When you are my client I will meet with you a week or so prior to your hearing so that I can listen to how you speak and describe your symptoms. I also use this pre-hearing meeting to practice your testimony and prepare my direct examination to fit your way of talking.
- How to prepare for your PTSD hearing if you are a combat veteran my 2016 blog post explaining how I have changed how I prepare my combat veteran clients for SSD hearings
Can You Establish A Social Security Disability Claim For Ptsd A Social Security Disability Attorney Explains
Posted on April 3rd, 2019
Establishing a Social Security Disability claim for PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a very complex case where you should retain the services of an experienced Social Security Disability attorney. An seasoned attorney will understand the ins and outs of your claim, especially when PTSD is the disability in which you are suffering from. They will also be able to assist you in navigating the complex legal procedures and explain what you will need to do in order to have your claim approved.
What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?Post-traumatic stress disorder is a type of psychiatric disorder that one experiences after they go through or witness a traumatic event. Some of the traumatic events that can cause post-traumatic stress disorder include natural disasters, rape, abuse, killing and violence. People may also develop post-traumatic stress disorder after they have a heart attack. Our military veterans that have served in combat many times will suffer from PTSD.
People who suffer from PTSD often have trouble completing their daily activities because they repeatedly have flashbacks. They are also afraid of the event happening again so they take extreme measures to avoid it.
1.)The person was exposed to violence, injury or death.
2.) The person often has flashbacks of the event. They may also have intrusive memories.
3.) The person avoids anything that reminds them of the event.
5.) The person has had increases in reactivity and arousal.
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Social Security’s Disability Listing For Ptsd
There are two ways for Social Security to find you disabled based on PTSD. The first is for you to satisfy the requirements of Social Security’s new disability listing for PTSD. The second way is to receive a “medical-vocational allowance” by showing that your impairments prevent you from working full-time.)
The disability listing for PTSD was added in 2017 as listing 12.15, Trauma- and stressor-related disorders. To fulfill the criteria for the listing, you must have medically documented evidence of all of the following:
- exposure to a death or threatened death, serious injury, or violence
- subsequent involuntary re-experiencing of the traumatic event
- avoidance of external reminders of the event
- disturbance in mood and behavior, and
- increases in “arousal and reactivity” .
In addition to proving the above, you must show that you have severe or extreme limitations in certain areas. You must have either an extreme limitation in one of the following areas or a “marked” limitation in two of the following areas:
- adapting or managing oneself
- interacting with others
- concentrating on tasks
- learning, understanding, and remembering information .
If you don’t currently suffer from any extreme or severe limitations in the above areas because you are living in a highly protected or supervised situation or you are undergoing intense therapy, you can provide certain documentation to fulfill the listing. You must show that:
Can I Get Ssdi For Ptsd
Post-traumatic stress disorder happens after seeing or going through a traumatic event. The effects of PTSD can be crippling. PTSD causes recurrent flashback episodes and nightmares that can disrupt daily activities. Some forms of PTSD include hyper-vigilance, extreme fear of the event recurring, anger or irritability, and a tendency to be easily startled.
Treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder can vary depending upon symptoms, and can involve a combination of counseling, cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, antidepressant drugs or antipsychotic medications. Disability claims for PTSD can be approved two ways. The first way for approval is for your medical records to satisfy the requirements of Social Security’s disability listing on trauma and stressor-related disorders. The second way for approval is to get a “medical-vocational allowance.” This is the usual way a majority of SSD claims are approved.
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Can I Work With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is exactly what its name implies: a stress disorder which follows a particularly distressing event or series of events. The event can be something that was physically traumatic or something which was psychologically traumatic . In many cases, such as those who were wounded during battle, the event may have been both physically and psychologically traumatic.
Common symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder include: nightmares about the event, flashbacks of the event, and a heightened sense of anxiety about thee event being repeated, whether there is rational reason to believe it might or not. These symptoms and conditions often lead to sleeplessness, avoidance of places, people or specific situations, hyperactivity, anger, and anxiety. Treatments usually consist of psychological therapy, medication, and cognitive behavioral therapy.
A Social Security Disability lawyer will know better than anyone else exactly what the Social Security Administration is looking for in determining whether or not your Post Traumatic Stress disorder qualifies you for Social Security Disability benefits.
Winning Long Term Disability Benefits For Ptsd From The Insurance Company
Convincing the insurance company that PTSD is a disability can be an uphill battle. What does it take to show an insurance carrier that you are unable to work because of your disorder and its complications?
Your first action is to read the policy and understand any limitations and exclusions. Here are a few common restrictive provisions written into most long term disability policies:
- Insurance policies often take a hard line and limit coverage of mental and nervous conditions. This umbrella term generally limits PTSD and other mental health disorders to 24-months coverage. If you are awarded short-term disability benefits, just as the 24-months of benefits expire the insurer will say you do not qualify for long-term disability, and disability payments will end.
- LTD policies often have an act of war exclusion upon which insurers may try to base denials of disability benefits for PTSD.
- Most insurance policies will require that you also apply for Social Security disability benefits. The reason is, any disability payments the insurance company pays you will be offset by the amount of your Social Security disability payments. And just because Social Security approves your disability claim for PTSD, this has no bearing on whether your insurance company will approve your claim for long-term disability benefits for PTSD.
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How Difficult Is It To Get Disability Benefits For Ptsd
If you want to get approved for Social Security Disability benefits, youll first need to prove the severity of your condition to the Social Security Administration. Sadly, simply having PTSD wont be enough to qualify for SSD, so youll want to make sure you put together a file filled with strong documentation and medical records before you even start the application. A trusted Social Security lawyer who has worked on many PTSD cases will be able to help you gather the necessary documents to create a winning case.
Ptsd Symptoms Can Be Debilitating
People experience PTSD in different ways. When symptoms become disabling, you may be able to collect disability benefits. According to the Mayo Clinic, common symptoms of PTSD include ongoing:
Intrusive memories of the trauma.
Avoidance of the traumatic event or anything that reminds you of it.
Being easily startled or frightened.
Triggers that can cause symptoms to arise include anything sensory such as sights, sounds, or smellsthat remind you of the initial traumatic event.
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Trauma As Defined By The Ssa
According to the SSA, trauma- or stressor-related disorders may be caused by experiencing or witnessing a traumatic or stressful event, or learning of a traumatic event occurring to a close family member or close friend, and the psychological aftermath of clinically significant effects on functioning.
A traumatic or stressful event may be an experience or witnessed experience that elicits feelings of intense fear, horror, and helplessness. This could be the result of active military combat, sexual or physical assault, childhood abuse, a serious car accident, or even a natural disaster.
You Present Sufficient Medical Evidence
Presenting sufficient medical records that prove your disability is likely the biggest telltale sign that your disability claim will be approved. You must have a medical condition that prevents you from working, and many people fail to adequately prove their medical condition. You may have a single impairment or multiple impairments, but you must present enough evidence to prove your claim for Social Security disability insurance benefits. These medical records might consist of doctors visit records, test results, therapy notes, or other medical documentation.
The records that you submit will need to be from medical professionals and not just your own testimony. While your testimony is important, the medical records can often make or break your disability case. When it comes to medical evidence, the same general rules apply to both Social Security disability insurance benefits andSupplemental Security Income benefits. If you have records that prove you are disabled, there is a good chance your claim will be approved.
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What Does Ptsd Do To A Person
People with PTSD have intense, disturbing thoughts and feelings related to their experience that last long after the traumatic event has ended. They may relive the event through flashbacks or nightmares they may feel sadness, fear or anger and they may feel detached or estranged from other people.
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The Many Causes Of Ptsd
To qualify for disability benefits for PTSD, you should provide sufficient medical documentation of a stressor event. Some cases of PTSD involve experiencing traumatic events such as physical assaults or muggings, terrorist attacks such as 9/11, natural disasters such as tornados, civil conflicts, or catastrophic events like car crashes or explosions.
Complex cases of PTSD may also involve traumatic and long-term physical, psychological, or sexual abuse, such as:
- Living as a Prisoner of War
- Living and fighting in a war zone
- Surviving concentration/internment camps
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Chapter : How Is Peripheral Neuropathy Diagnosed
- Quantitative Sudomotor Axon Reflex Test
Diagnosing peripheral neuropathy is complex, and often requires a series of tests to confirm. Diagnosing peripheral neuropathy can sometimes be challenging for physicians to diagnose, particularly in those who were previously diagnosed with a common condition that could lead to peripheral neuropathy, such as diabetes. This necessitates thoroughly investigating all the possible causes to be able to identify exactly what other medical issues that had potentially lead to developing peripheral neuropathy, and treat it as soon as possible.
Medical history: your doctor will enquire about your symptoms, their severity, how long you have had them, what triggers them or makes them worse and whether specific measures make them better. You will also be asked about your smoking and alcohol habits, family history of neurologic disorders, your work, exposure to certain toxins or infectious diseases.
Physical exam: your doctor will examine you to try to find any physical signs of any other conditions that could cause peripheral neuropathy. They will also conduct a simple neurological exam to have a basic evaluation of the state of your sensory and motor functions, before requiring more specialized imaging tests.
Blood tests: such as blood glucose levels, complete blood count, liver and kidney functions, vitamin B12 levels, immunoproteins levels.
Genetic testing to exclude inherited neuropathy disorders.