This post discusses Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) and Social Security Disability. Read on for how Social Security will evaluate your claim for disability based on Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

The body has many types of nerves that communicate to help you move, think and feel. Some of the nerves in your body are under voluntary control and others are involuntary (heart beating or digestion). The nerves that are affected when you have ALS are the motor neurons that provide voluntary movements and muscle power. Examples of voluntary movements are your making the effort to reach for the phone or step off a curb; these actions are controlled by the muscles in the arms and legs. Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) usually strikes people between the ages of 40-70 and as many as 30,000 Americans have the disease at any given time. ALS can happen to anyone and in most cases the cause is unknown. Via The ALS Association

The early symptoms of ALS usually start in your hands, feet or legs. Difficulty walking, hand weakness, clumsiness, slurring speech, trouble swallowing, muscle cramps and difficulty holding your head up are all possible symptoms. As your muscles continue to weaken, you lose your ability to complete these tasks. ALS does not affect your ability to think or feel. Via The Mayo Clinic

There is no cure for ALS.  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first drug treatment for the disease—riluzole (Rilutek)—in 1995. Riluzole is believed to reduce damage to motor neurons by decreasing the release of glutamate. Clinical trials with ALS patients showed that riluzole prolongs survival by several months, mainly in those with difficulty swallowing. Most people with ALS die from respiratory failure. Via NINDS.

The Social Security Administration evaluates Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) under 11.10 Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. This listing requires medical evidence, including documentation of a clinically appropriate medical history, neurological findings consistent with the diagnosis of ALS, and the results of any electrophysiological and neuroimaging testing. Medical testing is usually done to rule out other diseases that have similar symptoms. There is no single test that establishes the existence of ALS.

The Social Security Disability Process is long and tough for most people, but it should not be for someone diagnosed with ALS. ALS is included on Social Security’s list of Compassionate Allowances. Compassionate Allowance cases should be handled as quickly as possible by Social Security. If you are found disabled based on Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) you do not have to wait the usual 24 months for your Medicare to begin.  The date of Medicare entitlement is the date of entitlement for disability benefits. Found here.

Social Security Disability benefit payments should be expedited in individuals with ALS. If this is not the case for you or someone you love who has been diagnosed with ALS, give the Bishop Law Firm a call today. We represent Social Security Disability clients in Raleigh, Cary, Durham and surrounding areas in NC. We want to help!