The Diagnosis of Musculoskeletal Disorders

By Kenton Koszdin on August 10, 2018 | In Disease SSDI Claim

The Diagnosis of Musculoskeletal Disorders

If you have a musculoskeletal impairment, i.e., some inability to walk or move that impairs your ability to perform everyday activities, such as the functions related to your job, you may have a disability that meets the criteria of the Listing of Impairments (the “Listings”), which enumerate the 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 was $1,170 for non-blind disabled applicants and $1,950 for blind applicants. In 2018, this is $1,180 for non-blind disabled applicants and $1,970 for blind applicants.

Diagnosis and evaluation of musculoskeletal impairments must typically be supported by detailed descriptions of the joints, their ranges of motion, the musculature’s condition, sensory or reflex changes, circulatory deficits, and laboratory findings, including x-rays or other medically acceptable imaging.

Any physical examination to establish a musculoskeletal condition must contain a detailed description of the rheumatological, orthopedic, neurological, and other findings appropriate to the specific impairment. Any physical findings must be determined from objective observation during the examination rather than a report of an allegation by the individual that her leg is “weak or without feeling.”

Alternative testing methods may and should be used to verify any abnormal findings. If abnormal physical findings are intermittent, their presence over time must be established by a record of continuous management and evaluation.

Other common names for musculoskeletal disorders are “repetitive stress injury,” “repetitive motion injury,” “overuse injury.” Repetition and stress are commonly the primary causes of damage to the musculoskeletal system.

Common musculoskeletal disorders include:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • DeQuervain’s Syndrome
  • Digital Neuritis
  • Epicondylitis
  • Ligament Sprain
  • Mechanical Back Syndrome
  • Muscle / Tendon strain
  • Radial Tunnel Syndrome
  • Rotator Cuff Tendonitis
  • Ruptured / Herniated Disc
  • Tendonitis
  • Tension Neck Syndrome
  • Thoracic Outlet Compression
  • Trigger Finger / Thumb

Musculoskeletal impairments are described in the listings based on symptoms, signs, laboratory findings, functional limitations, and their response to a regimen of prescribed treatment. The SSA needs detailed reports of history, physical examinations, laboratory studies, and any prescribed treatment and response so it can evaluate a musculoskeletal impairment ‘s duration and severity.

A knowledgeable disability attorney can assist those individuals with musculoskeletal disorders. The Kenton Koszdin Law Office possesses the knowledge and the necessary experience to represent and assist applicants for disability benefits. Do you have any questions or concerns about how Social Security benefits affect your receipt of Medicare and/or Medicaid? If so, contact the Kenton Koszdin Law Office to get the Social Security help you need in the San Fernando Valley! Call 800-438-7734 or visit us online. Se habla espańol!

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