Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Social Security DisabilityTo qualify for SSDI or SSI for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) your condition must be so severe you are unable to work for at least 12 continuous months and meet the nonmedical requirements for one of the two disability program.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) refers to a group of inherited disorders that involve your connective tissue. Mainly, it affects your skin, joints and blood vessel walls.Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is a type of connective tissue disorder. These are diseases that target primarily your connective tissue.
Your connective tissue refers to the structural parts of your body. The cells of your body are essentially held together by your connective tissue. They form a framework, or matrix for your body.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is evidenced by genetic mutations (defects) that disrupt your bodys production of collagen. Collagen is one of the main things that compose your connective tissue.
There are several forms of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome that have been identified. Each one of these types of the disorder has different signs and symptoms. However, all kinds of the disorder affect your joints, and most of them involve your skin.
Somewhere around 1 in 10,000 to 20,000 people in the United States are afflicted with the classical form of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, which used to be referred to as types I and II. Some of its signs and symptoms are:
- Non-cancerous fibrous growths that develop on pressure parts of your body, such as your elbows and knees
- Fatty growths on your shins and forearms
- Loose joints
- Muscle fatigue and pain
- Redundant skin folds in areas, such as your eyelids
- Slow and poor healing of wounds that lead to wide scarring
- Velvety, highly elastic skin
- Fragile skin that bruises or tears easily
- Heart valve problems (mitral valve prolapse and aortic root dilation)
About 1 in 10,000 to 15,000 people in the United States have hypermobility type Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, which used to be called type III. Some of its signs and symptoms include:
- Loose, unstable joints that have many dislocations
- Advanced premature osteoarthritis with chronic pain
- Muscle fatigue and pain
- Bruising easily
- Chronic degenerative joint disease
- Heart valve problems like those of classic type.
Vascular type Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, formerly type IV, affects about 1 in 100,000 to 200,000 people in the United States. Although rare, it is one of the most serious forms. Signs and symptoms include:
- Fragile organs and blood vessels that rupture easily
- Thin, translucent skin that bruises easily
- Characteristic facial appearance of small chin, sunken cheeks, protruding eyes and thin nose and lips
- Heart valve difficulties
- Collapsed lung (pneumothorax).
While Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is not on the Social Security Administrations list of impairments, it does not mean that you will not qualify for Social Security disability benefits. It depends on how disabling the disorder is for you.
Have you suffered internal organ and vascular damage? Have your joints been seriously damaged? How much pain is the disorder causing you? How many times have you had to have surgery because of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome? The answers to these questions will go a long way in determining whether you qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
The best thing that you can do is to have a social security disability attorney on your side, working for you. It has been established that claimants with an attorney are approved more often than those who are not represented by an attorney.