Most of the people have neck pain at one point or the other, especially people who spend long hours sitting in front of the computer at work and have a job which requires them to lift things overhead. Neck Pain can also be caused due to poor sitting posture, degeneration due to normal aging process, and overuse. Neck Pain at times is also caused by a fall or injury to the neck. Most of the cases of neck pain are not serious and resolve with time, but in some cases neck pain becomes severe and requires prolonged treatment from a healthcare provider and may also limit the functioning of the individual at home and at work. This article gives an overview on neck pain or cervical spine disorders and disability, can one qualify for social security disability benefits, and the importance of an experienced SSD attorney in improving your chances of winning disability claims for neck pain or cervical spine disorders.
Neck Pain Or Cervical Spine Disorders And Disability
Neck Pain can be caused due to numerous medical conditions like nerve compression or damage, injuries to the joints, degeneration of the cervical spine due to aging, or some sort of injury or fall. Majority of the people who apply for SSD benefits due to neck pain have medical conditions like herniated disc of the cervical spine, degenerative arthritis of the cervical spine impingement of the nerve roots, or whiplash injuries to the neck. Some of the symptoms associated with neck pain are numbness, frequent headaches, severe nausea without or without vomiting, dizziness or lightheadedness, and difficulty with chewing and swallowing.
Working community most vulnerable to be disabled due to excruciating neck pain are individuals who spend long hours in front of the computers like data entry operators, software engineers, networking professionals etc. Also, individuals involved in construction which requires them to repetitively lift overhead also are predisposed to conditions causing disabling neck pain.
Does Neck Pain Or Cervical Spine Disorders Qualify For Social Security Disability Benefits?
The Social Security Administration (SSA) utilizes a manual which has detailed listing of medical conditions which qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. This manual is knows as Blue Book. This manual has a comprehensive list of medical conditions which according to SSA qualify for Social Security Disability benefits provided the claimant fulfills the required criteria listed in the Blue Book.
Based on Blue Book, a claimant can qualify for disability for Neck Pain or Cervical Spine Disorders if the neck pain is caused due to the conditions listed in the Blue Book. Some of these conditions are Rheumatoid Arthritis and Disorders of the Spine. If the claimant is able to prove that he or she is unable to work due to severe neck pain caused by the above conditions by way of detailed medical records from treating physician which mentions the symptoms experienced by the claimant, the severity of the symptoms, and its impact on the workability of the claimant along with the overall prognosis with respect to the disease condition, imaging studies like CT scan, MRI studies, x-ray reports, and physician’s progress notes detailing the cause of the pain, the treatments rendered in the form of medications, physical therapy and other pharmacological treatments rendered and the response to the treatment, and the work restrictions provided by the physician then the claimant can qualify for SSD benefits for neck pain or cervical spine disorders.
What Are The Chances Of Winning Social Security Disability Benefits Due To Neck Pain Or Cervical Spine Disorders?
Even if a claimant does not meet the specified criteria mentioned in the Blue Book he or she can still get disability benefits provided that the claimant proves that he or she is unable to return to the previous level of occupation under any circumstances. The SSA will assess the work limitations and determine a Residual Functional Capacity based on the age, qualifications, and the work limitations specified in the medical records and look for a suitable job for the claimant. If the SSA still is not able to identify a suitable job for the claimant under the given specifications then the claimant may be granted Social Security Disability Benefits for Neck Pain or Cervical Spine Disorders. Citing an example, due to the neck pain or cervical spine disorder, the upper extremities of the claimant can get affected in the form of radiating pain causing numbness, tingling, and weakness of the arms precluding him or her to work in tasks which require excessive use of hands like sewing, stocking, counting cash, typing etc. Additionally, the Claimants ability to focus may also get affected due to persistent neck pain requiring them to take frequent breaks from work and thus preventing him or her to work in areas which requires high amounts of concentration like software programming, vigilance, security jobs etc.
Hence, if an individual has incapacitating or disabling neck pain preventing him or her from being able to carry out their duties without any discomfort or pain, then the individual can work with the treating physician and an experienced SSD attorney to present the case in the best possible way by furnishing detailed medical records, imaging studies, records of the treatments rendered, the functional capacity of the individual as mentioned by the treating physician and other relevant data pertaining to the functional limitations of the individual and apply for SSD benefits due to persistent Neck Pain or Cervical Spine Disorders.
Importance Of Disability Attorney In Winning Disability Claims For Neck Pain And Cervical Spine Disorders
It should be noted that most of disability claims filed by claimants get denied on the initial hearing. This is because majority of the claimants applying for social security disability have very little knowledge about how to present their case in front of the judge at the time of hearing. Hence it is advisable to have disability attorney having experience in handling SSD claims for neck pain or cervical spine disorders by the side who can prepare and present the case to the judge at the time of hearing in the best possible way. SSD attorney has significant exposure in handling disability cases and is the best person to present the social security disability claim for neck pain in front of the judge in the best possible way. Disability attorney is also quite familiar with rules of Social Security Administration and thus helps the claimant get disability benefits. The attorney also has significant knowledge as to what the judge might require of the claimant during the hearing and what is the other information that needs to be furnished in front of the judge at the time of hearing to win a neck pain or cervical spine disorder related disability claim. An SSD attorney gets paid only after the claimant has been granted social security disability benefit thus the attorney does all he or she can to get the claimant disability benefits.
To conclude, an individual with debilitating neck pain preventing him or her from working normally without any discomfort needs to work in close coordination with the treating physician and an experienced SSD attorney to present the case to the Judge in the best possible way so as to get the disability benefits for Neck Pain or Cervical Spine Disorders.