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How Social Security Disability, SSI evaluates Pain.

How Social Security Disaiblity, SSI Evaluates Pain.

Social Security looks at several different factors when they evaluate someone’s pain. These factors are set out in Social Security Ruling 96-3p. The first factor is whether an individual has a medically determinable impairment (this usually means a condition diagnosed by a doctor) that could reasonably be expected to cause pain. Once the condition is established, then Social Security considers evidence of the intensity, persistence and limitations caused by pain.

A disabling condition must have lasted or be expected to last no less than 12 full months. Limitations are considered severe  “if it significantly limits an individual’s physical or mental abilities to do basic work activities.” SSR 85-28.  

This makes it important to report all of your symptoms to your doctor. You must also follow any advice of your doctor.  If your doctor has not diagnosed you with a condition, then Social Security will not consider the condition. If there are days that you spend in bed because of pain note that on a calendar. It is also a good idea to share that calendar with your doctor. It may help them identify patterns, so they can help you more. It will also be noted in your medical records. If complaints of pain do not appear in your records, Social Security will tend to give your testimony regarding pain less weight.

If you have further questions about Social Security or SSI, please call us at O'Malley Tunstall.  Any of our attorneys or stiff will be glad to discuss with you.

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