You were recently diagnosed with sickle cell anemia, which, although terrifying, wasn’t all that surprising since your father, grandfather, two uncles, and three cousins are also sufferers. Since the diagnosis, you’ve talked to your doctor, family, and boss about the degenerative nature of the disorder and attempted to come up with some options. Your doctor discussed the disease in detail and how it may affect your ability to do certain things. Your boss told you that if you couldn’t perform the tasks you were hired for, he’d have to let you go. And, after scaring you with tales of symptoms and problems they have suffered, your family suggested filing for disability to offset costs.

You thought about this for a while and decided that disability would probably be your best option but what should you do before filing? How can you qualify and what do you need to prove your disorder?

Proving Your Disability for Benefit Approval

The Centers for Disease Control estimate that over 100 million people throughout the United States suffer from some sort of blood disease, and many more are diagnosed on an annual basis. Although some of these disorders are minor, many are debilitating or life threatening. The American Society of Hematology estimates that there are dozens of blood disorders that could not only affect your way of life, but could also prove to be fatal.

As a result of these alarming statistics, the Social Security Administration (SSA) recognizes that certain blood disorders can legitimately prevent someone from being able to work. As such, the SSA concedes that disability benefits should be provided to those who suffer severe blood disorders. However, in order to receive disability approval from the SSA, you must be able to prove that your disorder is severe enough to prevent you from working.

This required evidence could include any of the following:

  • Laboratory findings that reflect the values reported on more than one examination over a three-month period 
  • Medically acceptable imaging such as x-rays, CAT scans, or MRIs
  • Prophylactic therapy results
  • Evidence of one or more blood transfusions
  • Professional evaluation of the disorder under medical severity criteria
  • Pain documentation
  • Reports of hospitalization (beyond emergency care) at least three times during the last 12 months
  • Documentation of platelet counts (repeatedly below 40,000/microliter)
  • Medical/doctor statements and testimonies
  • Evidence of hemorrhaging
  • Documented occurrences of bacterial infections occurring at least three times during the past five months

Securing Your Evidence

Although the SSA can assist you with acquiring some of this evidence, it is still up to you to organize it and properly prepare it for review. This is why it’s important to have help accessing and streamlining the evidence so your application is filed properly and is worthy of being approved without question.

An experienced disability lawyer can help take the confusion, work, and delay out of applying, filing, and even hearing back from the SSA panel. So call us today to see how we can help secure your application and your future.

Need more information about your medical rights? Please feel free to download our free report: 7 Costly Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Social Security Disability Claim. You’ll learn more about your rights and claim options and see how our knowledge and experience can help you get the justice 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 508.283.5500 to schedule your free consultation.


John L. Keefe
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Founding Attorney, Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyer