IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and Social Security Disability Benefits
What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Irritable bowel syndrome is a gastrointestinal disorder which affects approximately 15% of the population. Symptoms of IBS can include painful abdominal pain, severe cramping, constipation, and diarrhea. Many IBS claimants suffer from an alternating pattern of constipation and diarrhea.
Claimants who have severe conditions such as blood in the stool, pain and cramping in their stomach which is not relieved by a bowel movement or substantial weight loss or anemia should see a doctor immediately. These symptoms are not generally attributed to IBS and may be a sign of more severe conditions such as colon cancer.
Unlike other diseases or conditions, such as Chrons disease, IBS does not produce any noticeable tissue damage or lead to more severe conditions or diseases such as cancer, but it can be severely disruptive to the work ability of claimants and make it difficult for claimants to attend to the necessary tasks of their personal, social or work life.
What causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Researchers are not yet certain what causes irritable bowel syndrome. Some individuals develop it after a very stressful event; others have another condition such as gastroenteritis which triggers it. Other doctors claim it may be a caused by some type of dysfunction of the bodys neurochemical system.
Can IBS be controlled?
Individuals who have IBS should do their best to control their symptoms by getting proper medical care. Doctors frequently recommend a new diet, stress management, psychotherapy and medication. With the proper treatment, many individuals are able to reduce the severity, duration and frequency of the IBS symptoms.
How do the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affect your ability to work?
The symptoms of IBS vary from person to person. Some claimants may find it uncomfortable and irritating but still have the ability to function in a work environment eight hours per day for five days per week. Some claimants may find that they are fine for a few days or weeks and then the symptoms return. Others who are diagnosed with
IBS have symptoms that simply get worse over time, even with the proper medical treatment.
Can I get Social Security Disability Benefits for my Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Will every claimant with irritable bowel syndrome qualify for long-term disability benefits from the Social Security Administration? No, in fact, it can be very difficult to get either Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for IBS unless you have other severe conditions such as depression or anxiety.
How do you win SSDI or SSI benefits? Claimants can win disability benefits by proving that the pain, discomfort and symptoms of their condition are so severe that they are unable to concentrate and perform the functions of a job.
How is this done? The best way is to find a disability lawyer who understands what type of medical information the Social Security Administration needs to make their disability decision and the restrictions that must be met to prove that the claimant is disabled and unable to work.
Keep in mind, the SSA is generally more concerned with a claimants functional limitations to work than with their actual medical condition, unless the claimants condition meets or exceeds a listing on the Social Security Administrations Listing of Impairments.
For instance, if your condition is causing severe chronic abdominal pain and has not responded to treatment and you have to use the restroom over 10 times per day at unpredictable times, you may be able to prove that your condition is so severe that you are unable to maintain employment.