Disability Benefits for Peripheral Artery Disease
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) of the legs or lower extremities refers to the constriction or obstruction of the blood arteries that deliver blood from the heart to the legs. It is primarily caused by the fatty plaque buildup in the arteries, a condition known as atherosclerosis. Although PAD can occur in any blood vessel, it is more prevalent in the legs than in the arms.
- Diabetes Hyperlipidemia
- Age greater than 60 years
These are all risk factors that are associated with Peripheral Artery Disease…
Men and women alike are affected by PAD; however, African Americans are at a greater risk of developing the disease. Hispanics may have rates of PAD comparable to or somewhat greater than non-Hispanic white persons. In the United States, approximately 6.5 million adults aged 40 and older have PAD. Other health problems and artery abnormalities can resemble the symptoms of PAD, and not all cases of PAD are caused by atherosclerosis.
The traditional symptom of PAD is pain in the legs that improves with physical activity, such as walking. However, up to 40% of persons with PAD do not have leg pain. Claudication symptoms include soreness, pains, or cramps during walking. They might occur in the buttock, hip, thigh, or calf.
Physical signs of PAD in the leg include muscle atrophy (weakness); hair loss; smooth, shiny skin; skin that is cool to the touch, particularly when accompanied by pain while walking (which is relieved by stopping); decreased or absent pulses in the feet; unhealed sores or ulcers in the legs or feet; and cold or numb toes.
If the following conditions and symptoms seems like something you have been going through or know someone that is going through it, you most likely will be eligible for Social Security Disability Benefits payments.
Obtaining Disability Medical Approval
Under certain situations, the SSA recognizes Peripheral Artery Ailment as a disabling disease. The Social Security Administration employs a medical guidance to evaluate if you are disabled.
This reference, called the Blue Book, categorizes PAD as a cardiovascular illness. There must be a serious disability or impairment that prevents you from working in any capacity following disease treatment. Section 4.0, Cardiovascular – Adult, contains the particular needs for PAD.
You must produce documentation indicating that you have been positively diagnosed with the condition by a physician. The diagnosis and treatment strategy for the disease must be documented on an ongoing basis. Additionally, documentation must demonstrate your reaction to the therapies. A minimum of three months of treatment must be documented prior to applying.
Frequently, the SSA will demand additional treatment to determine whether you will respond to it before evaluating your claim. If your sickness is not stable, or if you have changed to a new treatment plan with no documented results, you may have to wait for SSA to consider your case.
To be eligible for PAD benefits, you must have imaging data from a Doppler or an angiography, be experiencing leg pain, and have one of the following:
- ABI less than 0.5 at rest.
- A 50% reduction in systolic blood pressure at the ankles following activity
- lasting at least 10 minutes or longer.
- A systolic blood pressure in the toes that is less than 30 mm HG at rest.
- A toe or brachial index of less than 0.4 at rest
Making an Application for Disability Benefits
The procedure of obtaining disability benefits can be lengthy and complicated. It involves complete medical records, detailed testing to determine your leg and/or toe blood pressure, scans to confirm your diagnosis of PAD, documents to document your ongoing pain and mobility concerns, and how you have responded to treatment options. Benefits might be denied twice and then appealed. The final stage is an administrative law judge hearing.
You can begin the procedure online at www.SSA.gov, by phone at 1-800-772-1213, or in person at your local Social Security Administration office. A disability attorney can considerably boost your chances of receiving benefits approval.