Is it Possible to Get Disability for Hepatitis?

Is it Possible to Get Disability for Hepatitis?

The hepatitis virus spreads through blood resulting in numerous health issues. There are several different types of hepatitis. Each of which can cause symptoms that can prevent you from being able to work. In fact, some hepatitis medications even cause side effects that may render you unable to perform your job. As a result, there’s a chance that you can qualify for Social Security disability for hepatitis.

What is Hepatitis?

There are three types of hepatitis — hepatitis A, hepatitis B and hepatitis C. However, hepatitis A is self-limiting, which means patients will get over it once they’ve become ill. Although a patient can become seriously ill from hepatitis A, there is no chronic stage.

Hepatitis B is much more serious. For example, there’s a 90 percent chance that infants who contract hepatitis B will become chronic. Fortunately, adults who contract the disease will get over it in the acute stage between 90 and 95 percent of the time. The symptoms of hepatitis B are similar to those of hepatitis A. Symptoms include fever, jaundice, nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue, weakness, joint pain, abdominal pain and vomiting.

Hepatitis B becomes more problematic if it reaches the chronic stage as it can result in cirrhosis, liver cancer, liver failure and anemia. Hepatitis B is treatable, but there’s no cure. If the patient enters the chronic stage, they may need a liver transplant in order to live.

The most serious of the three is hepatitis C. It’s the most common blood-borne virus in the country. Around 60 to 85 percent of patients with hepatitis C will enter the chronic stages of the disease. What’s particularly dangerous about hepatitis C is that many people will not experience symptoms until serious liver damage occurs.

Early onset symptoms include fatigue, joint pain, muscle pain and digestive upsets. Other symptoms that can occur as the liver develops more fibrosis include ascites, easy bruising, hemorrhaging, confusion and possibly coma.

Treating Hepatitis

Although hepatitis A and B can be fought off by most people, hepatitis B can result in a chronic infection that may cause cirrhosis of the liver. If it’s not treated, this can result in liver failure, which would require a liver transplant. When it comes to hepatitis C, several types of prescribed medication suppress the virus.

However, these medications often cause debilitating side effects that include anemia, severe fatigue, insomnia, fever, nausea, vomiting, depression, memory problems, and concentration problems.

Qualifying for Social Security Disability for Hepatitis

While you won’t qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) if you have hepatitis A, you could qualify if you have either hepatitis B or hepatitis C, depending on the symptoms you have or the extent of the side effects caused by the medication you’re on.

One of the listings in the Social Security Administration’s Blue Book is for chronic liver disease. If your liver has been damaged, you’ll need to prove that you’ve been diagnosed with chronic liver disease and that you’ve suffered from complications as a result, such as hepatorenal syndrome, hepatopulmonary syndrome, abdominal cavity fluid, pleural cavity fluid, or internal bleeding.

However, even if you haven’t experienced liver damage, you could still qualify if you have hepatitis B or hepatitis C. You’ll have to prove that your symptoms or severe side effects of your medication prevent you from being able to work. For example, if you suffer from extreme fatigue as a result of the medication you’re on, it may be dangerous for you to work a job that requires your complete attention in order to do it safely.

To determine your residual functional capacity (RFC) the Social Security Administration will look at your diagnosis. Also, your doctor’s restrictions as well as your prior job skills. Lastly, age and educational level used to determine if you qualify for Social Security disability for hepatitis.

For advice on applying for disability for hepatitis, schedule a free consultation at Social Security Disability Advocates USA by calling (602) 952-3200 today, 24/7.

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