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Pectus Excavatum and SSA Disability Benefits

Pectus excavatum, according to the Mayo clinic “is a condition in which a person's breastbone is sunken into his or her chest.” This bending of the chest inwardly leaves a deep indentation in the chest which generally gets worse as a child grows into adolescence.
Pectus excavatum

This condition is more common in young boys than girls, and although it may not cause any serious symptoms in most individuals, in the most severe cases it can eventually cause a compression of the heart, reducing its capability to efficiently pump blood, or in the lungs, which limits their ability to expand. Some individuals will need to have surgery to correct these issues.

Additional signs and symptoms of pectus excavatum can include irregular heart beat or heart palpitations, severe chest pain, a heart murmur, lack of energy and fatigue, respiratory illness and coughing spells.

Causes of Pectus Excavatum


The medical community is unsure what causes this condition, although it may be hereditary. It also commonly occurs with other conditions such as mitral valve prolapse, scoliosis and Marfan syndrome.

Individuals with this condition should seek proper medical treatment to diagnose the condition and to make sure that it does not cause severe lung or heart conditions. Common tests to diagnosis pectus excavtum include x-rays, echocardiograms, lung function tests, computerized tomography, exercise tests and electrocardiograms.

Winning SSI for Pectus Excavatum for Children


Because this condition is generally diagnosed in childhood, parents may wonder if their child qualifies for Supplemental Security Income benefits (SSI).  The Social Security Administration has a list of impairments it considers disabling for children. This listing is called the SSA Listing of Impairments (also known as the ""Blue Book" it is a list of all the conditions and symptoms the SSA finds automatically disabling). The SSA has an adult listing and a child listing.

Pectus Excavatum does not have a listing, but this does not mean your child will not qualify for SSI benefits. Generally, when evaluating whether or not a child’s condition is “marked and severe” the SSA will determine if the child’s condition causes “marked limitations” in certain areas of functioning or “extreme limitations” in one area of functioning.

This condition, as mentioned above, in its most severe form may cause heart issues or the inability of your child’s lungs to function properly. If your child has respiratory issues their condition can be evaluated against the listing 103.00 Respiratory System and if they have heart issues their condition can be evaluated under the listing 104.00 Cardiovascular System.

Winning SSDI or SSI for Pectus Excavatum for Adults


Adults with pectus excavatum will only win SSDI or SSI if they can prove that their condition is so severe that they are unable to work for at least 12 continuous months. They also must meet other nonmedical requirements of the SSI or SSDI program.

Most claimants with this condition will not qualify for SSI or SSDI unless they have explored all treatment options and continue to have severe heart or lung issues which do not allow them to perform any type of work, even light or sedentary work.

Talk to a disability lawyer if you have this condition and suffer from severe symptoms and have exhausted all treatment options
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