If you or your spouse has been diagnosed with a severe case of fibromyalgia, you are likely thinking about whether to apply for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits. And, because you may be concerned about generating income during this time, you want to start receiving disability benefits as quickly as possible.
We are here to help! Let’s unpack how to win a fibromyalgia disability case the first time. At Crest SSD, we have years of experience and know-how to help you on the journey to receiving benefits.
Ready to get started with your disability application right now? Complete this form! There are no upfront costs to work with us. We only receive a fee directly from the Social Security Administration if you win your case – no out-of-pocket expense for you!
How is Fibromyalgia Defined?
What exactly is fibromyalgia? Fibromyalgia is defined as a long-term chronic condition that causes multiple health-related issues. These include:
- General fatigue
- Pain and tenderness in the muscles and skeletal system
- Disturbances in sleep and cognitive functions
The difficulty with fibromyalgia is that it is often difficult to diagnose. Symptoms often mirror other conditions, and there is no definitive test used to diagnose the condition.
What Are the Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
Historically, individuals are diagnosed with fibromyalgia if they have confirmed pain in 11 out of 18 possible “tender points.” These tender points include but are not limited to the following:
- Back of the head
- Tops of the shoulders
- Upper chest, hips, knees, and outer elbows
Pain in these trigger points varies case-to-case. The pain can range from a mild discomfort to a more intense, almost unbearable level. For example, if you or your spouse experiences pain that is best described as a sharp stabbing, throbbing, or accompanied by burning sensations.
Also, the pain can change depending on placement throughout the body. Other common symptoms include pain in the lower belly, depression, anxiety, focus problems, dry eyes, bladder issues, and non-restorative sleep.
How Social Security Administration (SSA) Views Fibromyalgia
The Social Security Administration (SSA) published a policy interpretation ruling, SSR 12-2p, in July 2012 that works as a guideline for how the SSA evaluates each fibromyalgia case. This ruling is also used to determine a medically determinable impairment.
To be established as a disability by the SSA, your fibromyalgia case must meet the following requirements:
- Medical evidence from your physician showing that the fibromyalgia ruling is unanimous.
- History of widespread pain throughout all parts of the body.
- Evidence of tests conducted that ruled out any other diagnosis.
- Must meet 11 out of the 18 tender points during physical examination. See image below for the 18 possible tender points used by the SSA.
Steps to Winning Approval of Your Fibromyalgia Case
As with all Social Security Disability benefits claims, you must provide ample evidence of the disability through medical records.
The SSA requires that you submit medical records for at least the 12 months prior to your disability claim in order for your diagnosis to be considered a medically determinable impairment.
In addition to medical requirements, the SSA also requires that an individual meet the minimum amount of work credits to qualify for benefits.
We understand that this process may seem daunting, especially when you are trying to make ends meet for your family. That is why Crest SSD is here to help people just like you file for — and win — a disability claim. We serve as a disability representative during the entire process from completing and filing the application to obtaining benefits.
Complete this form or call the number above to get started on your fibromyalgia disability case.