Anyone who has suffered a back injury knows how debilitating the pain can be. Pain in the lower back can present a serious challenge to mobility and performing daily living and work tasks. What’s even more frustrating is that the recovery from such injuries might be long or even remain incomplete, despite weeks of physical therapy and other medical treatment.
Social Security disability insurance benefits are available to individuals who are unable to work due to a back injury. However, the medical evidence SSA expects to see in low back pain cases presents a greater challenge for the applicant than for other disabilities, as back pain cases, especially for individuals under the age of 50, have an approval rate that is very low. The process begins with a diagnosis, usually through diagnostic imaging like an X-ray MRI or EMG to detect the source of the back pain.
The distinction between a short-term disability arising from back problems and a condition that qualifies for Social Security disability insurance is often found in the treatment records. Our law firm is well acquainted with the SSDI application process and recommends patients describe all disabling symptoms to their health care providers
In the case of lower back injuries or disabling pain, treatment records might describe how the pain interferes with the patient’s functional abilities. Perhaps the pain limits the patient’s ability to stand and walk, to sit for extended periods, or even to sleep at night. If medication is prescribed for the condition, any side effects that are experienced should also be documented. Similarly, medical records should track whether pain management therapy is able to achieve measurable results.
Finally, any other symptoms should also be documented, even if not physical. For example, if mental health issues like depression or anxiety accompany a back injury, the totality of a patient’s condition might be the tipping point toward SSDI eligibility and mental health treatment will strengthen the disability claim.
SSDI claims related to lower back injuries are among the most common, yet allowance rates at the hearing level are at historic lows. Our firm can help you prepare excellent medical evidence in support of your SSDI application. Call the Disability and Injury Law Offices of David R. Machek for a free consultation at Jenkintown 215-385-5353 or Philadelphia 215-323-5320.