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Social Security disability benefits and spine injuries

Spine injuries can happen over time from degenerative disorders, or can be the immediate and catastrophic result of injury. Anything from a workplace incident to a motor vehicle accident on the streets of any Michigan city can leave you incapacitated, and in need of support from Social Security disability benefits. At Adler Stillman, PLLC, we understand the pain and suffering that can come with loss of capability, loss of independence, loss of income and loss of quality of life associated with spine injuries.

The SSA.gov website's subsection on musculoskeletal disability evaluation for adults requires evaluation of your medical condition to determine if your spinal injury or illness meets one of three criteria for disorders of the spine, such as spinal arachnoiditis, osteoarthritis, herniated nucleus pulposus, degenerative disc disease, and ver tebral fractures. One of the criteria, spinal arachnoiditis, presents as severe burning or painful dysesthesia (an unpleasant or abnormal situation). Spinal arachnoiditis is diagnosed by biopsy.

Another of the criteria involves demonstrated evidence of nerve root compression and associated mobility problems, atrophy, neurological pain, reflex loss and sensory loss. A straight-leg raising test can determine if your spinal injury meets these criteria. The last of the criteria is lumbar spinal stenosis leading to pseudoclaudication, which presents as difficulty walking, weakness and pain. This must be established through medical imaging.

Any one or more of these criteria can be qualifiers for full or partial disability status, and eligible Social Security disability benefits. You deserve to be informed and educated about your eligibility for disability benefits. For more information, please visit our website and blog.

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BARRY D. ADLER
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