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What types of physical impairments qualify for SSDI benefits?

On Behalf of | Mar 3, 2022 | Social Security Disability |

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a crucial safety net for working adults. Everyone with a job helps fund the program, but only those who suffer serious medical issues can make a claim for benefits.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has an extensive list of qualifying conditions that can lead to someone receiving SSDI benefits. There are both mental conditions and physical conditions included on this list.

What kinds of physical conditions can qualify someone for SSDI benefits?

Only severe conditions qualify

A diagnosis with a condition like multiple sclerosis may terrify you at first. However, despite the worst stories you have heard, your condition may be much milder. Many illnesses present differently depending on someone’s age, gender-identification or underlying medical conditions.

Simply having a diagnosis on the list does not immediately qualify someone for benefits. You need medical documentation that the condition is severe enough to prevent you from working and will last for a year or longer.

There are multiple categories of qualifying conditions

The SSA groups physical conditions that may qualify someone for benefits into multiple categories. There are digestive diseases, like inflammatory bowel disease or a liver transplant, as well as musculoskeletal issues, including any condition that degenerates the spine.

Many cancers can qualify, as can endocrine disorders like adrenal gland disorders. Diseases that affect the heart or your blood, issues that affect your kidneys, immune system conditions and even skin disorders can qualify someone for benefits.

If your condition isn’t on the list, you can still qualify

If you explore the categories that you think might contain your diagnosis and find that it is not on the list, there is still hope. The list includes many categories that could extend to your medical condition.

The SSA considers all applications based on the evidence provided. As long as you have medical documentation about the severity of your condition and the way it affects your life, you could potentially apply for benefits even if your condition is not on the current list of qualifying conditions. The application process may simply require more effort and time.

Understanding what physical impairments may qualify for benefits can help an applicant connect with the benefits they need.