If you can no longer work because of injury or illness, you may qualify for Social Security disability insurance. The Social Security Administration impairment listing, often called the “blue book,” provides specific criteria for a range of qualifying conditions. If your disability does not appear in the blue book, however, you may still be able to obtain SSDI benefits.
Read on to learn more about eligible medical conditions for SSDI.
Categories of impairment
SSA defines fourteen broad impairment categories that qualify for benefits. Some of them are as follows:
- Back and neck injuries and other musculoskeletal problems
- Bone marrow disease and other hematological disorders
- Coronary artery disease, heart failure and other cardiovascular conditions
- Kidney disease and other genitourinary issues
- Blindness, hearing loss and other sensory issues
- Asthma, COPD and other diseases that affect the lungs
- Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy and other neurological impairments
- HIV/AIDS and other immune system disorders
Skin disorders and digestive problems also count, as well as depression, anxiety and other mental health disorders.
Equivalent disability listings
Even if a blue book listing for your specific condition does not exist, you may qualify for SSDI if your disorder totally or partially meets the qualifications for a similar medical issue. In addition, you may qualify for SSDI even when your disability does not appear in the blue book provided that you are able to prove that your disease severely limits your ability to complete the tasks your job requires. Many conditions that cause chronic pain and may result in severe permanent disability are not on the SSDI impairment listing but may still qualify you for benefits. Examples include fibromyalgia, migraine headaches, degenerative disc disease and chronic regional pain syndrome.
Your disease must cause a medically identifiable mental or physical disability. Before applying for SSDI benefits, gather your medical records along with statements from health care providers. This documentation will support the fact that you cannot work because of your health condition.