Pemphigus and pemphigoid are rare, autoimmune skin diseases in which antibodies mistakenly attack healthy skin cells, resulting in the development of a widespread rash that itches, burns, and blisters. Though an itchy rash may sound like a relatively minor ailment, anyone who’s tried to live and work with these conditions knows it’s anything but. Bullous diseases like pemphigus and pemphigoid can negatively affect your self-esteem, strain personal relationships, and make holding a job or engaging in substantial gainful activity (SGA) extremely difficult, if not impossible.
Fortunately, the Social Security Administration (SSA) recognizes the impact a pemphigoid or pemphigus diagnosis can have on your life and your ability to earn a living. If you can no longer work due to the symptoms of a bullous disease, you may qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Both pemphigus and pemphigoid are included in Section 8.03 of the Blue Book Listing of Impairments, which lists qualifying conditions and the medical criteria for approval.
Unfortunately, getting the benefits you need can be challenging, even when you have a medically determinable impairment (MDI) that qualifies. The application process can be complex, lengthy, and rife with potential pitfalls. Don’t go it alone and risk a denial. Keefe Disability Law’s highly-skilled Boston disability attorneys can help you prepare your application, avoid common mistakes, and increase your chances for approval. Here’s what you should know.
Meeting the Blue Book Listing for Pemphigus or Pemphigoid
If pemphigoid or pemphigus causes extensive skin lesions that persist for three months or more despite continuing treatment as prescribed, you may qualify for SSDI, particularly if the lesions:
- Interfere with the motion of your joints
- Severely limit the use of more than one extremity
- Cover the palms of both hands, severely limiting fine and gross motor movements
- Are in locations that severely limit your ability to ambulate, such as the soles of both feet, the perineum, or both inguinal areas
When evaluating your application for benefits, the disability examiner will consider factors such as the existence, severity, onset, duration, flare-up frequency, and prognosis of your skin disease.
Conveying the Severity of Your Skin Disease to the SSA
The more the disability case examiner knows about your condition, its severity, and the limitations it causes, the better. In addition to laboratory findings (such as biopsy or blood test results), our adept Boston disability lawyers can work with you and your doctors to gather, organize, and submit vital information on the following:
- The location, size, and appearance of lesions
- Any history of exposure to toxins, allergens, or irritants
- Any family history of skin disease
- Seasonal variations or stress factors
- The treatments you’ve tried, their effectiveness, and whether you experienced side effects
- Your ability to function outside of a highly-protective environment
Providing sufficient medical evidence from acceptable medical sources (AMS) is essential. According to the SSA, the vast majority of SSDI applications are initially denied – often due to a lack of medical evidence or preventable mistakes in the application paperwork. Let Keefe Disability Law’s experienced attorneys help you navigate the SSDI application process to get the benefits you deserve.
Are You Looking for a Social Security Disability Attorney in Boston, MA?
If you are looking to apply for Social Security disability, you need to speak with an experienced Social Security disability lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Natick Office directly at 888.904.6847 to schedule your free consultation.