We have discussed quite a few physical disabilities on this blog that might result in an applicant in Ohio being found disabled for the purposes of receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Most of the conditions we’ve covered have been those injuries or illnesses that affect systems inside a person’s body, such as bones or internal organs. However, there are individuals who suffer from diseases that affect the exterior of the body as well. So today we will take a brief look at what the Social Security Administration (SSA) looks at when it receives an application for benefits based on skin conditions.
Section 8.00 of the “Blue Book” deals with illnesses or injuries which affect the skin. In it, the SSA explains that they will generally look at, as with most applications, the duration, onset and severity of the skin disorder, including the extent of any lesions that occur, how frequently the condition flares up and what the prognosis is for the disorder. They may also consider the history of any exposure to environmental causes, such as allergens or toxins, as well as stress-related complications, family history, seasonal effects and whether the condition requires extensive protection. As usual, evidence must be produced from credible medical sources.
One of the most important factors in the above calculus is the severity of the skin disorder. A few spots that may be cosmetic problems but do not create an inability to work may not be enough to qualify an applicant. According to the SSA, they will look to the placement of an applicant’s lesions and whether they interfere with joint movement or ability to ambulate, or move around. Further, they will assess whether conditions that are not always present have frequent enough flare-ups to constitute a disability. They will also look at symptoms, especially any pain caused by the condition, as well as the efficacy, extent and side-effects of the treatment options available.
While one might be tempted to think of skin conditions from the stand-point of their effects on a person’s appearance, many serious skin conditions can cause those afflicted with pain and other symptoms that can affect their ability to lead normal lives. People with questions about whether they may be eligible for benefits due to a physical disability may wish to consider contacting an Ohio disability attorney.