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Keefe Disability Law
Social Security Disability & Supplemental Security Income
Toll Free 888-904-6847
Call 508-283-5500
Fax 508-309-6954

Cardiac Testing to Determine Validity of Ailment Claim

For the past few months, getting ready to go to work has been a chore. From the moment you get out of bed, you feel woozy and unsteady. By the time you get showered and dressed your heart is beating a mile a minute and you have to sit down for 20 minutes to recuperate. Once you make it to work, the problems only get worse. You find that you have to take excessive breaks and sit down more often than you used to. Unfortunately, your boss has noticed as well. You assure him that it is nothing, but that you will go to the doctor and get it checked out just in case.

Well, it isn’t nothing.

The doctor informs you after several tests that you have an irregular heartbeat and possible signs of at least one blocked artery. She tells you that without further testing she can’t be sure, but until you’re fully diagnosed and treated, you shouldn’t perform any manual labor or anything that may elevate your heart rate. She then suggests that you should file for disability. Once she completes her diagnosis, she tells you that she will give you the medical documentation you will need to properly file.

Being new to the whole disability option as well as scared about your heart, you have no idea what she is talking about. Documentation? Documentation for what? What medical documentation will you need and what kinds of tests will she perform?

Proof of Disability: Tests and Results

According to statistics from Johns Hopkins, more than 84 million people suffer from some sort of cardiovascular problem in the United States. Due to complications, overstimulation, and lack of treatment, these issues result in approximately one death every 40 seconds. This means that in the time it has taken you to click on this link and read this far, two people have already died due to their heart giving out.

As a result of this alarming fatality rate, as well as the detrimental health risks that overexertion can cause on these ailments, more and more sufferers are turning to the Social Security Administration for disability benefits. However, the SSA can’t viably accept all claimants. Therefore, in order to approve a claim, it requires sufficient evidence proving the disabling severity of the claimant’s disease.

Types of valid proof include:  

  • Reports of medical history, physical examinations, and laboratory studies. This includes any and all documentation that explains the degeneration of your heart and any prescribed treatment that will help the panel assess the severity and duration of your impairment.
  • Electrocardiogram (ECG). Detailed descriptions and copies of the original recording whereupon your heart was monitored for abnormal electrical activity are required. Manipulated/averaged recordings, or illegible copies will not be accepted, nor will abnormality rates that may have been caused by drugs (unless the drugs are documented within the report).
  • Exercise tolerance test (ETT). Reports documenting signs, symptoms and abnormalities suffered while exercising are expected. Not only will this help the panel assess how much activity your heart can withstand, but it will also show signs of how much physical and mental stress it can handle.
  • Drug-induced stress tests. When you’re unable to exercise enough to achieve optimum cardiac stress, your physician may suggest administering drugs to speed up your heart rate in order to get a proper stress level test result. Drug-induced stress tests can also provide evidence about heart chamber dimensions and function. These findings can help the panel better determine the severity of your ailment.
  • Doppler test. Used to estimate your blood flow by bouncing sound waves (ultrasound) off your circulating red blood cells, this procedure will help document the efficiency of your heart as well as show any degeneration or blockages in your arteries which could be aggravated by excessive activities.

Getting the Help You Need Before You File

If you have a cardiac issue that is preventing you from properly doing your job, or have recently lost your income due to a heart problem, you may be eligible for disability benefits. However, without knowing how to file, your chances of being denied are quite high. Contact us today for a free consultation and review of your claim. We’ll not only make sure that you have all the necessary documentation, reports, and test results you need, but we’ll also make sure your claim is properly filed and assessed. It’s your heart, but we want to help protect it. Take the next 40 seconds to think about, then call today to see how we can help.

Need more information about your disability rights? Please feel free to download our free report, “Five Most Frequently Asked Questions about Social Security Disability.” You’ll not only learn more about your rights and claim options, but you’ll also see how our knowledge and experience can help you get the justice you deserve.


John L. Keefe
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Founding Attorney of Keefe Disability Law