How Do I Get The Social Security Disability Benefits I Deserve
If you cant work because of carpal tunnel syndrome or your doctor has told you to apply for Social Security disability, you should hire Nancy Cavey to help you:
The SSA is in the business of denying claims and will use any reason to deny your benefits. The odds of getting your Social Security benefits are greater when you are represented by an experienced Social Security Disability attorney like Ms. Cavey.
Workers Comp Carpal Tunnel Settlements
Workers compensation benefits include the cost of medical treatment. Carpal tunnel release costs can get up to $7,000 per hand, including hospital facility fees and doctor fees.
Even without surgery, treatments costs can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars for various combinations of doctor visits, x-rays, nerve-conduction studies, braces, cortisone injections, and physical therapy.
Workers comp wage replacement benefits are are roughly two-thirds of the injured workers average pre-injury wage. Workers comp disability benefits may include a lump-sum wage replacement payout and vocational training to help return the injured worker to gainful employment.
Depending on your job requirements, the severity of your injury, and the extent of your treatment, you could be off work for a few weeks, up to several months.
If your carpal tunnel is diagnosed as a temporary total disability, you may be able to resume your former job duties, but only after additional time for healing. In the meantime, your physician may clear you to work at another job that accommodates your disability.
Example: Office Worker Treated for Carpal Tunnel
Katy worked for more than ten years as a typist at a mortgage company, eventually making $15 per hour/$600 per week. Over time, she began to experience pain and tingling in her left wrist and hand.
Medical bills : $1,000
Lost wages benefit : $1,200
Estimated Workers Comp Settlement Value: $2,200
Brians weekly wage benefit is $533
Continue To Document Your Symptoms
Because the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome may improve over time, particularly if treatment proves to be effective or if you have surgery, the insurance company may require on-going proof of your disability. Your insurance provider may accept updated medical records or may want updated clinical tests. They will be looking for continued proof of abnormal clinical results. If you fail to provide the information they request, your benefits may be terminated.
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Carpal Tunnel In The Workplace
Carpal tunnel syndrome can be incredibly painful. causing tingling, pain, numbness in the affected hand. It can also make it difficult to use that hand, particularly when it comes to grasping and other fine motor movements. If you have been diagnosed with CTS, you may find it challenging to carry out the normal functions of your job.
CTS can make it hard to perform basic tasks, such as:
- Lifting items
- Using tools
In some cases, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by repetitive motions performed at work. Even if this is not the case, having to perform certain movements at work, like using a mouse, typing, or using a vibrating tool, can exacerbate the symptoms of CTS and make it harder to reduce the inflammation of the median nerve.
Symptoms of CTS can also distract you from being able to perform your job, and may even lead to other conditions, such as depression. Constant pain and an inability to fully use your hand and arm can make it harder to concentrate even if you dont need that hand or arm to perform your job.
How Is Carpal Tunnel Diagnosed And Treated
Carpal tunnel syndrome is diagnosed by a review of your symptoms, a physical examination, and most often, through a nerve conduction test. This type of testing checks to see how well the electrical impulses are passing through your median nerve. If these electrical impulses are moving at a slower rate, you will be deemed to suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome.
It is very important to seek treatment for carpal tunnel. If left untreated, your symptoms of numbness, tingling, and weakness could result in permanent damage to your median nerve. The typical treatment options will depend upon the severity of your condition. If your condition is determined to be mild, your doctor may prescribe activity modification including the use of a wrist brace. For more severe conditions, you may require surgical intervention. In the most extreme cases, you may require multiple surgeries to correct the pinched nerve.
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What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome And How Is It Diagnosed
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition causing numbness and tingling in the hand and arm due to damage to the median nerve which passes through the carpal tunnel, located in the wrist. Those who experience carpal tunnel syndrome may find that it begins with occasional numbness or tingling in the thumb, index and middle finger that clears up quickly. The numbness and tingling may begin to travel up the arm or begin disturbing the individual during sleep. It is recommended that anyone experiencing symptoms see a physician right away, as a lack of treatment can result in permanent nerve damage.
Some factors that make a person more likely to suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome are:
- Anatomical factors: This includes broken or fractured bones in the wrist, as this may narrow the carpal tunnel, putting pressure on the nerve, or arthritis in the wrist that causes warping to the bones.
- Gender: Women are more likely than men to suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, possibly due to the fact that their carpal tunnels are narrower than mens, on average.
- Other medical factors: Obesity, diabetes, menopause and thyroid disorders may make a person more prone to developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
It’s Becoming Less Difficult To Qualify For Disability Benefits Based On Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome happens when the median nerve, which goes from the forearm into the palm of the hand, becomes compressed at the wrist. This particular nerve controls sensations to the palm, thumb and fingers, and controls impulses to some small muscles in the hand that allow the fingers and thumb to move. The nerve compression is caused by inflammation or thickening in the tendons.
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How Va Rates Carpal Tunnel
VA rates carpal tunnel under 38 CFR § 4.124a, Schedule of Ratings Neurological conditions and convulsive disorders, Diagnostic Code 8515. The rating criteria is as follows based on paralysis of the median nerve:
- 70/60% complete paralysis marked by the absence of flexion of index finger and feeble flexion of middle finger, inability to make a fist, index and middle fingers remain extended, inability to flex distal phalanx of thumb, weakened flexion of etc.
- 50/40% incomplete paralysis severe
Service Connection For Carpal Tunnel
In order to receive VA disability benefits for carpal tunnel, you have to first prove to VA that your carpal tunnel is a result of your time in service by establishing service connection. To establish direct service connection, you must demonstrate the following:
- A current diagnosis of carpal tunnel
- An in-service event, injury, or illness
- A medical nexus between the current diagnosis and the in-service event, injury, or illness
The third element of direct service connection related to a medical nexus may require obtaining an opinion from a VA healthcare professional or private physician. Ideally, the medical opinion would state that your carpal tunnel is at least as likely as not related to your military service. However, service connection can also be established on a secondary basis.
Specifically, if you have an already service-connected condition that caused or aggravated your carpal tunnel, you may still qualify for VA disability benefits. Here, you must provide medical evidence demonstrating that causal relationship between the primary and secondary conditions.
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Filing A Carpal Tunnel Workers Comp Claim
Carpal tunnel is a legitimate on-the-job injury. Workers affected by it have a right to make a workers compensation claim.
Unlike many on-the-job injuries that happen suddenly, carpal tunnel syndrome is a progressive injury and can take months, even years before you start having any symptoms.
Occupational diseases and conditions, like carpal tunnel, develop as a direct result of an activity that is part of your required daily work.
Am I Eligible For Disability With Sciatica
What is sciatica? Sciatica is a symptom that consists of pain caused by irritation of the sciatic nerve. You might feel weakness, numbness, or a burning or tingling sensation down your leg, possibly even in your toes. Sciatica might be a symptom of a pinched nerve affecting one or more of the lower spinal nerves.
What Causes Sciatic Nerve Compression?
Several spinal disorders can cause spinal nerve compression and sciatica or lumbar radiculopathy. The 6 most common are:
- a bulging or herniated disc
- lumbar spinal stenosis
- piriformis syndrome
- spinal tumors
Although it may be difficult to qualify for disability benefits with sciatica alone, most times the sciatica is caused by a condition listed above and an application is filed due to a combination of several conditions. In addition, claimants will want to document their pain and any other limitations caused by these back injuries when applying for benefits.
You may qualify for disability benefits if you are not performing substantial gainful activity and if the impairment prevents you from doing your past relevant work or other work that exists in significant numbers in the national economy.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Burning, tingling or numbness in the palm of the hand, or in the fingers
- Tingling and numbness that can run all the way up to the shoulders
- A feeling that the hands and wrists are constantly asleep
- Loss of grip as the muscles begin to shrink
- Muscle cramping and spasms
- Loss of coordination, including the loss of the use of the thumb and first finger to create a pinching motion and
- Permanent muscle damage and loss of feeling from delaying treatment.
Proving A Disability Claim For Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
As with other conditions, the most important factor in challenging a disability claim denial is to provide sufficient medical evidence outlining your history with symptoms, how the symptoms impact your job, your history of seeking advice from a physician and any prescribed treatments youve undertaken to improve the issue. As always, it is important that this record is provided by a medical professional, as a personal record will be given little weight by an insurance company.
Our long-term disability lawyers work with each client to review their obligations, examine whether anything additional needs to be done from a medical assessment standpoint in order to bolster their claim, and advise them through the complex process of disputing a disability finding. Insurance companies are large organizations that regularly go up against claimants seeking to enforce their coverage, and they have developed stringent requirements specifically to allow them to avoid paying benefits whenever possible. As a firm with experience working for those companies in the past, we understand how they work, and as a result, we are often able to position our clients in such a way as to make their claim undeniable.
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Do I Qualify For Social Security Disability Benefits If I Have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
The Social Security Administration doesnt always make it easy for those with carpal tunnel syndrome to get the Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income benefits they deserve. Many claims are denied because SSA says:
Your CTS, as a symptom of diabetes, arthritis, lupus, scleroderma or kidney failure, doesnt meet the requirements of or is the equivalent of a Medical Listing,
You can return to the lightest job you held in the 15 years before you became disabled, or
There is other work you can do in the mythical national economy based on your age, education, transferable skills and your residual functional capacity.
Not all cases of carpal tunnel are severe enough to make you eligible for Social Security Disability benefits, but Nancy Cavey has successfully represented many SSA applicants with carpal tunnel syndrome. She works to overcome the claims denial by working closely with you and your physician to show that:
- Your limitations are too great for you to work at your old job or any other job in the national economy in view of your age, education and transferable work skills.
She offers a free initial consultation and welcomes the opportunity to speak with you about your Social Security disability claim.
How Can Cck Help You With Your Long
If your LTD claim is denied, you have the right to appeal that decision. But you do not need to go through that process alone. An experienced ERISA or LTD attorney like those on the team at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick can navigate the appeal process for you, so you can focus on your health. We take a comprehensive approach to preparing and filing your appeal, which includes:
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Can You Qualify For Long
Perhaps but whether or not you can qualify for long term disability needs to be looked at on a case by case basis.
Often times degenerative disc disease in itself will not prevent a person from working. With many people who suffer disc degeneration disease, their pain will often flare up with activity and then either remain as a low-grade pain or go away completely. This makes it difficult for sedentary workers to make the argument that they cannot work and should collect long-term disability.
However, in some cases, particularly with multilevel disc disease, either traumatic or degenerative, the condition can be so severely disabling that is can prevent a person from working at any gainful occupation for shich they are reasonably suited. The condition can be quite devastating in some cases, especially once a person has undergone surgery such as a multi-level laminectomy or discectomy. Although the severity of the pain might be lessened, the spine never returns to its normal state.
If the pain is severe enough, a person might require epidural injections which places steroids into the epidural areas of the spine to reduce pain and inflammation. This typically provides short-term pain relief, but if required on a regular and consistent or lifelong basis, then a persons ability to work can be significantly impaired by the pain in between injections times.
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What Is Carpal Tunnel
Carpal tunnel is a common condition that causes pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness in a persons hand and arm. The condition occurs when the median nerve, one of the major nerves to the hand, is squeezed or compressed as it travels through the wrist. Carpal tunnel tends to get worse over time, so early diagnosis and treatment are important.
Treatment options for carpal tunnel may involve wearing a wrist splint, avoiding certain activities, and surgery to take pressure off the median nerve. Most cases of carpal tunnel are caused by a combination of factors however, certain risk factors can include the following:
- Heredity there may be anatomic differences that change the amount of space for the median nerve, resulting in a higher chance of compression. These traits can run in families.
- Repetitive hand use repeating the same hand and wrist motions or activities over a prolonged period of time may aggravate the tendons in the wrist, causing swelling that puts pressure on the nerve.
- Hand and wrist position doing activities that involve extreme flexion or extension of the hand and wrist for a prolonged period of time can increase pressure on the nerve
- Health conditions diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and thyroid gland imbalance are conditions that are associated with carpal tunnel.
Importantly, carpal tunnel can also be related to your military service. If this is the case, you may be eligible to receive VA disability benefits.
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Meeting Or Equaling An Impairment Listing
There is no impairment listing for carpal tunnel syndrome, but if there is nerve damage, your condition might be considered peripheral neuropathy. However, the requirements of the listing for peripheral neuropathy are very difficult to meet, particularly for someone with carpal tunnel syndrome. For more information, see our article on disability for peripheral neuropathy. When the ligaments involved in carpal tunnel cause you to lose functional use of your wrists and hands, your condition might be considered under the soft tissue injury listing.
Alternatively, carpal tunnel can be a symptom of disease that has an impairment listing. Examples of possible listed impairment that could cause, or are related to, carpal tunnel include:
If you have any of these possibly related conditions, visit the above links to learn how you can qualify for disability benefits based on the impairment listings for these conditions.
Why Should I Hire A Disability Attorney
An inability to use both of your hands may seem like a slam dunk to you, but there are a lot of nuances that could affect the outcome of your Social Security disability claim. These nuances are why we strongly urge you to seek assistance from an experienced Social Security disability attorney.
Obtaining representation with your disability claim could mean the difference between waiting 3 months or waiting 3 years. It could even mean the difference between winning and losing.
Plus, hiring a Social Security disability attorney from LaBovick Law Group wont cost you a thing out of pocket, as any attorney fee received is regulated by the SSA. These fees are contingency-based, meaning we dont get paid unless your disability benefits are secured.
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