Disability Determination for Chronic Migraine Headaches.
A serious and chronic type of head pain, migraine headaches produce intense, often debilitating pain on one side of the head that may last a few hours or a few days. Pain is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, vision disturbances, extreme sensitivity to noises and lights, and dizziness. In addition, overwhelming fatigue and weakness make recovering from migraines difficult. While prescription pain medications can help reduce migraine pain and shorten a migraine attack, some people suffer migraines so frequently they are unable to work. For those diagnosed with a chronic migraine disorder that does not respond to standard treatments, the Social Security Administration may approve them for headaches disability benefits.
How Is a Disability Determination Made for People With Migraines?
The SSA does not consider chronic migraines and headaches as medical conditions warranting disability benefits. However, the board of physicians working for the SSA will examine medical evidence regarding severity and frequency of an applicant’s migraines to determine if the condition interferes with their ability to earn a living wage. The most important component of filing a chronic migraine disability claim to the SSA is to provide substantial and detailed medical documentation from physicians who have monitored and treated the condition.
Since no tests are available that prove a person suffers from migraines, physicians’ statements, the applicant’s work history, documentation of the duration and frequency of migraine attacks and proof of emergency room visits or hospitalizations are essential for receiving approval of a headaches disability claim. Applicants will also need to show they have been undergoing treatment for migraines for at least one year.
What If a Chronic Migraine Is Accompanied by a Psychological Disorder?
People who do not respond to migraine treatments and cannot work because of their condition often develop anxiety and depression over financial instability. In some cases, the Social Security Administration may consider the combination of a mental disorder and chronic migraine as debilitating enough to approve a disability determination. However, applicants with documented evidence of recurring migraines will also need to include ample documentation regarding the severity of their depression from a psychiatrist or psychologist.
What Should You Do If Your Headaches Disability Application Is Denied?
The chance of being approved for disability benefits by the Social Security Administration for chronic migraines is slim to none. Applicants can appeal a denial but the process is complicated, time-consuming and stressful. The best way to increase your chances of being approved by the SSA is to hire a disability lawyer who has experience handling difficult SSA claims. Contact the Law Office of Daniel Berger today to schedule a consultation appointment.