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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS): How to Qualify for Social Security Disability

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis aka Lou Gehrig’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder resulting in loss of muscle control. There is very little known about what causes ALS, but current research suggests there is a genetic component or trigger passed down through generations. There is no known cure for ALS, and ongoing treatment is focused on extending life expectancy. ALS impacts the body by destroying neurons and subsequently eroding the molecular communication network between the brain and muscles.

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The most common symptoms of ALS include muscle stiffness, restrictive movement, involuntary twitching, and muscle deterioration. Late stage symptoms of ALS include reduced ability to communicate, swallow, and breathe properly.

Given the unknown causes, limited treatment options, and life expectancy of ALS, it is one of the most difficult medical conditions to understand. Initial symptoms such as muscle cramping and stiffness are often overlooked. Furthermore, proper identification of ALS usually requires an MRI to identify a signal abnormality in the motor cortex, something that is not found on a routine medical examination. With ALS it is most important to identify and treat the condition as soon as possible.

ALS is included under the Compassionate Allowances program from Social Security and claimant’s with the disease will be given special consideration. Compassionate Allowances allow Social Security to target the most obviously disabled individuals for allowances based on objective medical information that can be obtained quickly.

Premier Disability Services, LLC has extensive experience assisting claimants who have ALS obtain Social Security Disability benefits. If you have ALS and you are unable to work, please contact our office for a free evaluation.