Qualifying for Long-Term Disability Benefits with Fibromyalgia
Until recently, fibromyalgia was a misunderstood disease that some believed patients exaggerated. Today, there is a more specific diagnostic profile to identify and diagnose cases of fibromyalgia though patients may still run into difficulty if trying to recover long-term disability.
The Difficult Case of Fibromyalgia for Disability Benefits
Fibromyalgia can result from a specific event such as a car accident, the aftermath of an infection, or spontaneously with no known trigger. The symptoms of fibromyalgia are inconsistent and may vary greatly from patient to patient, some of the most common symptoms being:
• widespread pain (both sides of the body and above and below the waist);
• tender points (such as on the back of the head, on top of or between shoulders, the elbows, the hips, the knees, and more);
• irritable bowel syndrome (IBS);
• problems sleeping; and
• depression and anxiety.
There are no known cures for the condition and current treatments involve management of the disease through medication to address symptoms and certain lifestyle changes. Lifestyle modifications might include:
• reducing stress levels;
• healthy eating; and
• ensuring you get enough sleep each night.
The disease is known to “flare up” at times, so the degree of disability can vary from day to day. Because this disease is only recently being acknowledged as a verifiable disabling condition, insurance companies continue to wrongly deny claimants who have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, making it important to adequately support your claim if you are applying for long-term disability.
Supporting Your Fibromyalgia Disability Claim
Consistent, detailed medical evidence of your doctor’s diagnosis and continued evaluation and management of the disease is crucial to building your long-term disability benefits claim for fibromyalgia. Make sure you have detailed records of all evaluations and treatments and the effectiveness of the therapies you attempt.
Proving that your disability impairs you from working is also critical to your claim. By keeping a diary you can track the limitations your fibromyalgia has placed on your work ability as well as your home life. Making it apparent that your chronic pain makes it extremely difficult or impossible to work is necessary to support your disability claim.
Don’t Let the Insurance Companies Deny Your Fibromyalgia Claim
The insurance companies are diligent in preventing disability fraud, and therefore scrutinize claims for conditions that cannot be easily confirmed with medical tests. Fibromyalgia is one of those conditions that can cause your claim to be wrongfully denied if your medical treatment is not documented properly.
Building a strong case for disability benefits with a fibromyalgia diagnosis involves thorough research, evidence gathering, and evaluation. At Preszler Law Firm, we’ve helped claimants secure the benefits due to them. We apply our experience and in-depth knowledge of the system to developing our client’s cases. We know the types of evidence and testimony necessary to prove your condition to your insurer, thereby increasing your chances of securing long-term disability benefits. To learn more about how we can help, call us at 1-800-JUSTICE®. We offer a no cost consultation. And remember, there is a never a fee unless we recover money for you.
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