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Femur Fracture and SSA Disability Benefits

The femur or the thighbone is the largest bone in the body, connecting the hip joint and the knee. It is also the strongest bone in the body, but it is often injured or broken due to trauma including falling, sport’s injuries, and car accidents. Claimants who have other diseases or conditions such as osteoporosis may also be prone to weakening bones which can increase the risk of fracturing the femur.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="180" caption="Fracture"]Fracture humérale[/caption]

The severity of the femur fracture can vary based on where on the bone the fracture occurs as well as if the claimant suffers a simple or complex fracture. Claimants with a simple fracture where the femur is broken in two will have a greater chance of a quick recovery than those who experience a break of more than two fragments.

Symptoms of a femur fracture

Claimants who suffer a femur fracture may be limited in their ability to perform work for weeks or months. Common symptoms can include:

  1. Bleeding

  2. Pain

  3. Leg deformity

  4. Swelling

  5. Protrusions of bone fragments from the skin

  6. Reduced blood circulation

  7. Loss of feeling

Winning SSDI or SSI benefits for a femur fracture, however, may be difficult. Although the injury can be severe for many weeks or months many applicants will have difficulty proving that they cannot work for 12 continuous months.

Treatment for a Femur Fracture

The type of treatment needed for a femur fracture will vary based on the extent of the injury. Generally non-surgical options are used including casting or screws. Surgery may be performed as a last result and can include inserting an (IM) rod (made up of metal) into the thighbone. Recovery time can be as long as 2 to 3 months with pain medication often needed. It will be difficult to work during this recovery period. Complications also may arise if infection occurs at the surgical site and complete recovery could be as long as nine months for many individuals.

Winning SSDI or SSI benefits for a Femur Fracture

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has two methods for determining whether or not a claimant is disabled and qualifies for SSI or SSDI benefits for a femur fracture. First they will determine if the claimant’s condition “meets or exceeds” a listing in the SSA Listing of Impairments. If not, the SSA will determine if the claimant has the residual ability to work through a medical vocational allowance.

Meeting a Listing for a Femur Fracture

The SSA does have a listing for a femur fracture which is found under 1.00 Musculoskeletal System, 1.06 Fracture of the femur, tibia, pelvis, or one or more of the tarsal bones. To meet this listing the applicant must prove that their condition will last for at least 12 continuous months and a “solid union is not evident on appropriate medically acceptable imaging and not clinically solid and they do not have the ability to ambulate effectively return to effective ambulation did not occur or is not expected to occur within 12 months of onset.”

The SSA will expect that the applicant has gotten adequate medical treatment, meets the nonmedical requirements of the SSI or SSDI program, and will be disabled according to the listing for 12 continuous months.

Winning benefits through a medical vocational allowance

Claimants who do not meet this listing will have to prove they do not have the residual capacity to work and will have a difficult time winning benefits and may need to talk to a disability lawyer.
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