Eligible Disorders Included in the SSA Blue Book for Disability Evaluation

In order for an adult disability to be considered for evaluation, it needs to be approved by the SSA panel as a severe condition. If the SSA panel deems the condition severe enough that it could reasonably keep the inflicted individual from sustaining an adequate working income, it will proceed with its investigations. The panel will then use the eligible condition claim to evaluate the severity based on the claimant’s application and determine the need for disability benefits. If the panel finds that the condition is minor, the claim will be denied.

The thirteen conditions that the panel has previously investigated and approved as eligible for further disability investigations include:

  1. Musculoskeletal system disorders. If an impairment interferes very seriously with the individual's ability to independently initiate, sustain, or complete activities, he may be eligible for disability.
  2. Sensory and auditory system disorders. If abnormalities of the eye, optic nerve or tracts, or the brain cause a loss of visual acuity or if a condition affects the ear drum or ear canal causing severe hearing loss, the condition may be covered by disability.
  3. Respiratory system disorders. If an ailment such as severe asthma or chronic pneumonia affects an individual’s ability to breathe or severely impairs lung function, the condition will most likely be eligible for benefits.
  4. Cardiac and vascular system disorders. Conditions that may affect the proper function of the heart or vascular system, causing increased risk for heart attacks, may be covered.
  5. Digestive system disorders. If a condition such as irritable bowel syndrome severely affects the function of the intestines or stomach, the SSA may rule that the individual cannot be expected to be able to work.
  6. Endocrine system disorders. Conditions that attack the endocrine system and create hormonal imbalances can create complications throughout the body, making it difficult for an individual to function. Therefore severe endocrine disorders are usually covered by disability.
  7. Immune system disorders. Conditions that attack the immune system, making it difficult for individuals to fight off infections, can be deadly. As such the SSA considers severe immune disorders justifiable conditions for disability.
  8. Skin disorders. Disorders akin to ichthyosis, bullous diseases, chronic infections, etc. that attack skin cells and create risk for infection are considered eligible for disability benefits.      
  9. Genitourinary disorders. Disorders that may result in chronic kidney failure and disease (hypertensive nephropathy, diabetic nephropathy) are considered severe enough to be covered.
  10. Hematological disorders. Disorders of the blood that disrupt the normal development and function of white blood cells, red blood cells, platelets, and clotting-factor proteins are considered for disability. These disorders include sickle cell disease, anemia, and leukemia.
  11. Congenital disorders. Any physical or mental disorder that has been present since birth, affects multiple body systems, and limits the individual’s ability to sustain adequate employment may be evaluated for eligibility. Examples include non-mosaic Down Syndrome, and heart defects.
  12. Neurological and mental disorders. Any type of mental condition, whether caused by injury (brain damage, PTSD), or genetics (autism, depression), that affect an individual’s ability to handle social stresses or intellectual duties may be subject to SSA evaluation for disability.
  13. Cancers. Although evaluation of severity will still need to be completed, most types of malignant cancers are eligible for disability benefit consideration.

For more information on whether your condition qualifies for disability benefits, visit our educational article library or contact us for a free consultation. We want to make sure you’re fully prepared for the journey ahead to avoid any disappointments and surprises. Let us use our knowledge and experience to help you. Make an appointment today and get a day closer to getting your benefits.

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