Marfan Syndrome

Living with a serious disability can severely diminish a sufferer’s quality of life. An inability to work due to disability causes sufferers to struggle with making ends meet when they should be focusing on managing their condition. Fortunately, social security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits are available to qualified individuals. People who have worked in the past may be able to receive benefits to help pay for basic necessities including housing, food and utilities.

Disability For Marfan Syndrome

Marfan syndrome is a genetic disorder that affects the connective tissue in the body. This tissue plays a major role in growth, development and support of the organs. Abnormalities in connective tissue have the potential to cause serious complications.

This condition occurs when a mutation affects the body’s ability to produce fibrillin, a protein that is contained in connective tissue. Signs of Marfan syndrome include tallness, thinness, flexible joints, elongated fingers or toes, a curvature of the spine, flat feet and crowded teeth. The chest cavity of a person who has this condition may sink in or protrude.

People who are properly diagnosed with Marfan syndrome are often able to lead normal lives with treatment. However, severe cases that do not respond to treatment can cause a person to be considered disabled. In this case, an individual may not be able to perform job tasks in order to earn an income to support themselves and their families.

Marfan Syndrome and SSDI

People who have Marfan syndrome are not able to qualify for SSDI benefits under an Social Security Administration (SSA) listing. However, this does not mean that these individuals will be denied benefits. If complications of the condition are severe, these complications can qualify a person for benefits.

An aortic aneurysm commonly occurs when the connective tissue in the arteries is affected by Marfan syndrome. This complication could cause the artery lining to separate from the connected wall. Uncontrolled aneurysms can cause chronic chest pain and may make it difficult for blood to circulate throughout the body.

Suffering from an aortic aneurysm automatically qualifies a person with Marfan syndrome for SSDI benfeits. This does not mean that people who have this condition will be denied if they do not experience this complication.

People who have severe heart murmurs that cause ongoing problems may qualify for benefits. Heart murmurs can cause complications including chest pain, fainting, dizziness, swelling and poor oxygen circulation. Poor circulation of oxygen throughout the body makes it impossible for people to work in extreme temperatures. For example, a person who is only experienced in warehouse work that involves working in refrigerated environments may not be able to work because of this complication of Marfan syndrome.

The SSA will require that a medical professional complete a residual functional capacity (RFC) test. This test evaluates the physical or mental limits that a person has as a result of their disability. The SSA is then able to use these results and compare them with the applicant’s work history to determine if the applicant could work in any position for which he or she is qualified.

It is important for applicants to be proactive about receiving treatment from a licensed medical provider who keeps thorough records. The SSA will use these records in order to determine the date of diagnosis and the severity of symptoms.

Getting Help With Applying

There are several forms that must be filled out during the application process. Medical records need to be attached to the application in order to ensure that the SSA feels that adequate proof of disability has been provided. Unfortunately, over half of first-time applications are rejected. While appeals are allowed, filing an appeal means that applicants will have to wait months for a second decision. It is best to consult with an experienced SSDI attorney before applying for benefits. These professionals are knowledgeable about SSA requirements and are able to help disabled individuals navigate the complicated application process. I have ten years of experience in social security cases and appeals, and am ready to fight for your benefits. Contact me today to get started on your case.

Ruth F. Kolb, Esquire has been practicing social security disability law since 2003 handling all levels of representation from initial claims through all stages of appeal.