Social Security Disability Benefits for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
An inflammatory bowel disease and type of ulcerative colitis affecting the intestines, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) causes alternating, severe episodes of constipation and diarrhea and painful stomach cramping. Accompanying these sometimes debilitating symptoms is the overwhelming stress and anxiety people feel when they cannot work due to IBS. Currently, no standard treatment exists for IBS. Physicians recommend making lifestyle changes and taking antidepressants to reduce anxiety and depression that can exacerbate IBS symptoms.
Can People With Irritable Bowel Syndrome Get Approved for Disability Benefits?
The Social Security Administration does not make it easy to get disability for IBS. However, they will review IBS cases if applicants are earning less than $1180 and their IBS is severe and chronic (lasting more than one year). Proving that a diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome is long-term is the most difficult aspect of applying for Social Security disability. According to SSA, the definition of a disabling condition involves “severe impairment” that significantly affects an applicant’s ability to work full time.
To determine if an applicant cannot work due to irritable bowel syndrome, the SSA will examine medical evidence, doctors’ reports and the applicant’s own testimony. In addition, the SSA will use an assessment called the Residual Functional Capacity to rate applicants according to their ability to perform medium, light or sedentary work. If an RFC rating indicates an applicant to still does work they performed in the past, they will deny their disability benefits claim.
Should You Hire a Social Security Disability Attorney to Handle Your IBS Case?
Although irritable bowel syndrome is not included in the Social Security Administration’s list of designated impairments, it is still possible to get approved for disability benefits if you suffer from IBS. Most people enlist the assistance of a Social Security disability attorney to manage their case simply because the SSA expects numerous, detailed medical documents from applicants who are too ill and stressed to deal well with these demands. Since the SSA is likely to deny an initial IBS claim, appeals are necessary for ultimately being approved.
If you suffer from IBS and can no longer work, schedule a consultation appointment with an experienced Social Security disability lawyer today.