Disability Lawyers For Va Claims In Maine
If you suffer from IBS, or any other service-connected disability, and you have been denied VA disability benefits, consider working with a qualified VA disability attorney during the appeals process. Jackson & MacNichol Law Offices, dedicated disability lawyers for VA claims in Maine, are here to help. Contact us to schedule your free case evaluation.
But Do You Have A Disability
Taking more sick days than other employees does not make you disabled. However, when IBS interferes with your ability to keep a job or work frequently enough to support yourself, it may be considered a disability by the Social Security Administration .
While IBS is not currently included in the Listing of Impairments, you may be able to qualify if you can prove to the SSA that:
- You cant work. This includes your current and other jobs for which you may be qualified.
- Your condition is expected to last for more than 12 months. This may be difficult for many IBS suffers to prove since the symptoms of IBS can fluctuate considerably.
- You have tried IBS treatments as prescribed by your doctor. This could include, but is not limited to: antibiotics, other medications, and counseling to manage stress and depression.
Of course, even if you can prove these things, your approval will not be automatic. You must apply for Social Security disability benefits and wait for the SSAs determination of your status. Your medical records and complete application will be important during this process. To learn more about what is important during this process, please download a FREE copy of our book: Social Security Disability What You Need to Know.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome And Va Disability Benefits
What Is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Irritable bowel syndrome is a common condition that affects the large intestine. Signs and symptoms include bloating, gas, abdominal pain, cramping, and diarrhea or constipation, or sometimes both. Due to its status as a chronic condition, those who have IBS need to manage it long term.
Some people with IBS can control their symptoms through managing their diet, lifestyle, and stress. More severe symptoms typically require medication. It is important to see a doctor when one experiences any of the following symptoms:
- Diarrhea at night
- Persistent pain that isnt relieved by gas or bowel movement
- Difficulty swallowing
The precise cause of IBS isnt known, but some research shows that early life stress is a major contributor. Due to that causation, it is no surprise that many veterans develop IBS in service or at some point after service. In fact, IBS makes up 13 percent of all digestive disorders claimed for VA disability benefits.
Getting Service Connected For IBS
How The VA Rates Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Under 38 CFR § 4.114, the VA rates IBS, which the diagnostic code refers to as irritable colon syndrome, as follows:
Diagnostic Code 7319: Irritable colon syndrome
- 30 Severe diarrhea, or alternating diarrhea and constipation, with more or less constant abdominal distress
- 10 Moderate frequent episodes of bowel disturbance with abdominal distress
- 0 Mild disturbances of bowel function with occasional episodes of abdominal distress
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Can You Get Disability For Ibs
Although Ibs is not currently in SSAs listing of impairments that qualify for benefits, certain cases of Ibs can be considered a severe condition. If you are able to compile a strong enough case as to why your symptoms are limiting you from working your full-time job, you could be approved for benefits. It is important to seek help from an experienced attorney to form a strong case.
What Are The Different Kinds Of Bowel Syndromes That Qualify For Ssdi
In some cases, severe forms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome may qualify you for Social Security disability. Its important to note, however, that the criteria the Social Security Administration will use to determine if your Irritable Bowel Syndrome qualifies for Social Security disability benefits is tied more to the effect the condition has on your ability to engage in daily activities than to the diagnosis itself. The exact type of Irritable Bowel Syndrome you suffer from is less important than the extent of its impact on your daily activities.
In other words, simply being diagnosed with IBS-even severe IBS- will not automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability benefits. In order to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance , Supplemental Security Income and other SSD programs.
You must be able to show definitively that your medical condition cause you to be unable to perform any meaningful work which you have ever performed before or for which you could reasonably be expected to train.
In order to show that your IBS prohibits you from maintaining gainful employment, you will need to show that you are unable to perform physical work.
Depending on your age, work experience, and level of education, you may also have to demonstrate that it precludes you from performing light or sedentary work.
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Irritable Bowel Syndrome Social Security Disabilty Claims
Irritable bowel syndrome is a gastrointestinal disorder characterized by symptoms such as cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, and diarrhea. Nearly 20 percent of the U.S. adult population has experienced symptoms of IBS, making irritable bowel syndrome one of the most common disorders diagnosed by doctors. Some people can control their IBS symptoms with diet, medication, and stress management. For some people however, IBS can be disabling. If you can’t work because of irritable bowel syndrome, depending on your circumstances it could be possible to get Social Security Disability benefits. Medical record documentation of doctors appointments, medications and treatment, and treating doctors opinions are critical to proving you are eligible for irritable bowel syndrome disability benefits. Not everyone suffering from IBS qualifies for Social Security Disability. Irritable bowel syndrome symptoms can be hard to document, but at the Law Office of Charles E. Binder and Harry J. Binder, we make sure your IBS diagnosis is clearly documented in records and statements from treating doctors that are sent to the Social Security Administration . The Law Office of Charles E. Binder and Harry J. Binder is equipped to represent clients filing for irritable bowel syndrome disability insurance or SSD benefits throughout the country.
What Are The Chances Winning Social Security Disability Benefits For Irritable Bowel Syndrome
An individual who has Irritable Bowel Syndrome which prevents him or her from working productively over a consistent period of time then he or she can qualify for disability benefits. To get approved for Disability Benefits, the claimant should work in close coordination with treating physician along with an experienced SSD attorney so that the case is presented in the best possible way in front of the honorable judge with all possible evidence in the form of medical records and other relevant tests supporting the claim so that the chances of the claimant winning Social Security Disability benefits due to IBS becomes quite bright.
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Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms
Irritable bowel syndrome is a GI disorder. It affects the colon and large intestines. Those who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome may have any combination of the following symptoms:
- Constipation alternating with diarrhea
Treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome ranges from dietary and lifestyle changes to antibiotics. Stress relief techniques are also used to help treat psychological issues which can contribute to IBS. In some cases, surgery is necessary.
What Are The Causes Of Irritable Bowel Syndrome
The root cause of Irritable Bowel Syndrome is not yet known but there are quite a few factors that may cause this disease. The best way to understand it is by knowing how the intestines work. The intestinal walls are lined with muscles that contract and relax in coordinated fashion in order to move the food ingested to the rectum. In cases of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, this coordination is not present and the muscles contract more than it relaxes causing diarrhea, bloating, or abdominal cramping or it may relax more than it contracts resulting in severe constipation as the food moves slowly from the intestine to the rectum.
Some abnormalities in the gastrointestinal system may also cause Irritable Bowel Syndrome resulting in symptoms of abdominal pain and discomfort due to presence of gas or stool stretching the abdomen.
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Va Rating For Ibs And Gerd
February 10, 2020 by Strategic Veteran
Two conditions that a veteran can not have a separate VA rating for are GERD and IBS. This might be confusing since the symptoms affect the opposite sides of the GI tract. However, the Code of Federal Regulations Title 38 has the codes set up, where specific conditions that can not each be rated. If both conditions were rated the veteran would be double-dipping into the VA money pot which can be referred to as pyramiding.
Can You Do Your Past Work
The SSA will decide whether your IBS prevents you from performing your past work. To make this determination, the SSA looks at the objective medical evidence you have provided from your treating doctors, information provided by any exams performed by the SSA’s doctors, and your own testimony. The SSA will give you an RFC rating based on this information, which states whether you can do sedentary work, light work, or medium work. If the SSA concludes that you can do your past work with your RFC rating, your claim will be denied.
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What Kind Of Laxative Can You Take For Ibs
Laxatives and stool softeners often are the first drugs used for patients with IBS-C to stimulate bowel movements. This is because of they are relatively safe, inexpensive and widely available. Of these medicines, polyethylene glycol has the best evidence behind it,
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How Do You Know If An Accommodation Is Reasonable
The Job Accommodation Network provides free guidance regarding accommodations for disabled workers. Although their database does not include IBS specifically, you can get ideas from looking at accommodations for other disabilities. One would imagine that comfortable access to a restroom would be considered to be a reasonable request. Modifying work schedules around times of symptom exacerbation or, when possible, allowing for work to be done from home, would also appear to be reasonable options.
The ADA also takes on the issue of “unpaid leave.” This would be applicable to those of you for whom your IBS is so severe that you frequently miss work. Unpaid leave can be considered a reasonable accommodation if the employer is not able to offer another accommodation that would allow you to work and if such unpaid leave would not cause your employer undue hardship.
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Ibs Service Connection Presumption For Pows And Gulf War Veterans
Because of the connection between IBS and military service that has been recognized for former POWs and Gulf War veterans, the VA has established a presumptive service connection. This means that when a former POW held for at least 30 days or a veteran who served in the Southwest Asia Theater of Operations during the Gulf War applies for IBS VA disability benefits, the veteran is not required to submit proof that the IBS is connected to the veterans service. If you can prove you were a POW or served in the Persian Gulf, your IBS is automatically service-connected.
As a result of this presumption, obtaining IBS VA disability benefits is streamlined for former POWs and Gulf War veterans. This presumption extends to other digestive and gastrointestinal disorders. For POWs, the other conditions are primarily nutritional disorders.
For Gulf War veterans, the other gastrointestinal disorders entitled to the presumption of service connection are functional gastrointestinal disorders. Functional gastrointestinal disorders are different from structural gastrointestinal disorders, such as GERD, heartburn, or acid reflux. The presumption of service connection for Gulf War veterans does not apply to GERD.
Does My Ibs Diagnosis Qualify Me For Disability Benefits
The SSAs impairment listings outline the criteria to meet their definition of disabled based on your medical condition. There is not a specific impairment listing for IBS. However, many who suffer from IBS may meet the criteria listed under Section 5.00 Digestive Disorders. Some of the symptoms covered in this section that may allow you to qualify include gastrointestinal hemorrhaging and weight loss due to digestive disorders.
To prove you meet these criteria, your medical records need to document specific test results showing the serious and debilitating nature of your condition. In addition, they need to show you have suffered from your condition on a long-term basis. This is sometimes an issue because IBS symptoms tend to come and go.
If you believe you may qualify for SSD benefits, we can help you file your claim. Even if you do not meet the criteria in the impairment listings, we may be able to help you demonstrate you are unable to work and qualify for benefits in another way. Call us today for a free case evaluation, and let us go to work for you.
Pittsburgh Irritable Bowel Syndrome Lawyer Near Me
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How Your Residual Functional Capacity Is Used At A Social Security Hearing
Many claims are denied both at the Initial Application and Request For Reconsideration stages of the claims process.
At the hearing stage, the Administrative Law Judge will determine your RFC and give hypotheticals to the vocational evaluator who will testify at your hearing. The judge will ask the VE to take into consideration your RFC, as determined by the judge, your age, education and prior work experience in determining:
- Whether you can return to the lightest job you held in the last 15 years,
- Whether there is other work you can do or could learn to do.
It is crucial that you are represented at a hearing to make sure the right questions are asked of the VE.
If You Have Been Denied Disability For Irritable Bowel Syndrome You May Still Qualify For Benefits Contact An Experienced Social Security Disability Attorney At 512
While the cause of the disorder is unknown, its symptoms are also loosely defined.
Diarrhea and constipation are most common, and most medications focus on managing these symptoms. Cramps and bloating are also fairly common. Symptoms of IBS can be triggered by a variety of things. Caffeine and smoking can trigger them. Stress is a common trigger. Certain foods such as dairy, red peppers, green onion, and wheat may instigate symptoms.
Those with severe cases of IBS often have co-existing conditions. The SSA will take all of your conditions into account when determining whether or not you are able to work. Have you been denied disability? Call 512-454-4000 for help today.
Most treatment for IBS focuses on reducing symptoms.
Antidiarrheal drugs, laxatives, fiber supplements, and anti-constipation drugs are most frequently prescribed. Lifestyle changes are centered on reducing stress and eating a healthy, high-fiber diet. The vast majority of IBS cases are not severe and are easily managed with medication and lifestyle changes.
The Social Security Administration offers benefits to those who are unable to work due to an injury or illness.
The Social Security Administration has specific guidelines for who can qualify under IBS.
The exact blue book listing can be found here, but it essentially states that the patient must experience:
- hospitalization for surgery twice, at least 60 days apart, in a 6-month period.
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Are There Any Digestive Conditions That Are Not Ibs
Conditions That Seem Like IBS But Arent 1 Ulcerative Colitis. Its a type of inflammatory bowel disease 2 Microscopic Colitis. When you have this condition, your colon is inflamed. 3 Crohns Disease. Like ulcerative colitis, this type of IBD causes ulcers and inflammation. 4 Lactose Intolerance. If you have this condition,
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Irritable Bowel Syndrome And Disability Benefits
The Mayo Clinic describes irritable bowel syndrome as a common disorder that affects the large intestine. The signs and symptoms of IBS include cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, and diarrhea or constipation, or both. If you have been diagnosed with IBS and are unable to work as a result of your symptoms, you may be eligible for disability benefits.
To qualify for disability benefits, you must have evidence that your symptoms have lasted for a period of at least 12 months. Moreover, the evidence must indicate that your symptoms are severe enough to prevent you from performing full-time work. A mere diagnosis of IBS will be insufficient in this regard. Evidence that you will suffer from abdominal pain or cramping or that you will require frequent bathroom breaks will be helpful to show that your IBS will interfere to a degree that precludes full-time work. Also, having a history of flare ups each month can be used to demonstrate that you would have multiple absences each month. If you will need to take days off from work each month because of your symptoms or spend too much time off-task because of your symptoms, you may be found disabled regardless of the work activities you are otherwise capable of performing.
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What Causes Ibs And Other Gastrointestinal Problems Covered By Va Disability
There is no clear cause for IBS because it can involve the muscles, nerves, lining, and even microflora of the intestines. However, not every case involves every physical system. For example, certain cases are primarily caused by the muscles of the intestines that delay or accelerate bowel movement leading to chronic constipation or diarrhea.
In most cases, IBS is diagnosed by running laboratory testsand eliminating other causes of gastric distress, such as celiac disease, coloncancer, and inflammatory bowel disease, which is a separate condition despiteits similar-sounding name. Symptoms that a veteran with IBS might experienceinclude abdominal pain, excessive gas, constipation ,diarrhea , and mucus in the stool.
The logical link between service and IBS is most clear in former POWs who often suffer from hunger, malnutrition, and foodborne illnesses from their time in captivity. Other gastrointestinal problems that can arise in former POWs include pellagra, beriberi, dysentery, and peptic ulcer disease.
Similarly, the evidence shows that Gulf War veterans are more likely to experience IBS than the average person. Although the VA avoids the term Gulf War Syndrome, IBS is often associated with the myriad of symptoms experienced by Gulf War veterans.