If you or someone you know has a genitourinary disorder resulting from a kidney transplant or chronic kidney disease, you may have a disability that meets the criteria established by the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) Listing of Impairments (the “Listings”). The Listing of Impairments lists impairments considered severe enough to prevent an individual from performing substantial gainful activity (SGA), which is work that earns income above a certain threshold per month. In 2017, this is $1,170 for non-blind disabled applicants and $1,950 for blind applicants.
The category of impairments of genitourinary disorders usually involves conditions such as chronic kidney disease, nephrotic syndrome, and complications resulting from chronic kidney disease.
Chronic kidney disease, with chronic hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, involves dialysis as a treatment for CKD that uses artificial means to remove toxic metabolic byproducts from the blood. Hemodialysis uses an artificial kidney machine to clean waste products from the blood; peritoneal dialysis uses a dialyzing solution that is introduced into and removed from the abdomen (peritoneal cavity) either continuously or intermittently.
Under the category, Chronic kidney disease, with chronic hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, ongoing dialysis must have lasted or be expected to last for a continuous period of at least 12 months. Social Security will accept a report from an acceptable medical source that describes the CKD and current dialysis, further indicating that dialysis will be ongoing.
If undergoing chronic hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, a claimant’s CKD may meet the SSA’s definition of disability before the beginning of dialysis. Social Security determines the onset of disability based on the information in a claimant’s case record.
Claimants with Chronic kidney disease with a kidney transplant are considered to be disabled for 1 year from the date of transplant. Then the SSA will evaluate any residual impairments taking into account post-transplant function, episodes of rejection, complications in other body systems, and any adverse effects of ongoing treatment.
The CKD for claimants with transplants must meet Social Security’s definition of disability prior to the transplant. The onset of any disability will be determined by the facts in a claimant’s case record.
Chronic kidney disease with impairment of kidney function must include a documented laboratory finding showing reduced glomerular filtration on at least two occasions at least 90 days apart during a consecutive 12-month period. This may be established by findings of certain levels of serum creatinine, a predefined creatinine clearance; or a certain minimum estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR).
In addition to this finding, there must be a finding of one of renal osteodystrophy with severe bone pain and imaging studies documenting bone abnormalities, such as osteitis fibrosa, osteomalacia, or pathologic fractures; or peripheral neuropathy; or fluid overload syndrome documented by a certain diastolic hypertension rate or signs of vascular congestion or anasarca. The latter must be established despite at least 90 consecutive days of prescribed therapy, and documented on at least two occasions at least 90 days apart during a consecutive 12-month period. Finally, a finding of anorexia with weight loss determined by body mass index (BMI) of 18.0 or less, calculated on at least two occasions at least 90 days apart during a consecutive 12-month period.
Nephrotic syndrome may be established by laboratory findings documented on at least two occasions at least 90 days apart during a consecutive 12-month period, of certain pre-established levels of Proteinuria, Serum albumin, and a urine total-protein-to-creatinine ratio of 3.5 or greater. There must also be a finding of anasarca persisting for at least 90 days despite prescribed treatment.
Complications of chronic kidney disease require at least three hospitalizations within a consecutive 12-month period and occurring at least 30 days apart. Each hospitalization must last at least 48 hours, including hours in a hospital emergency department immediately before the hospitalization.
The Sullivan Law Office provides assistance in ensuring that all applicants and recipients receive all of the benefits to which they are entitled in all types of disability cases. These include Social Security Disability, long-term disability, short-term disability, state retirement and workers’ compensation. Every application for social security benefits requires the consideration of a substantial list of issues over the life of a case. It’s one matter to apply for and receive benefits, but it’s another to understand what happens after this occurs over the long road ahead.
The Sullivan Law Office provides over twenty-five years of experience and can represent and assist you throughout the entire process in all disability cases. Contact the Sullivan Law Office today. We offer free consultations, so you have absolutely nothing to lose! We look forward to hearing from you. Call 888-587-0228 or visit us online.