Seizure Disorders: How to Qualify for Social Security Disability
A seizure is the physical findings or changes in behavior that occur after an episode of abnormal electrical activity in the brain. In severe cases, a seizure may produce a change or loss of consciousness and involuntary muscle spasms called convulsions. Associated symptoms include brief blackout, loss of bladder or bowel control, mood changes, and sudden falling. Seizures usually come on suddenly and vary in duration and severity. A seizure may be a one-time event, or you may have seizures repeatedly. Recurrent seizures are called epilepsy, or a seizure disorder.
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The Social Security Administration has an impairments listing manual (called the blue book) which includes an official disability listing for Epilepsy. Social Security evaluates epilepsy under 11.02 convulsive epilepsy and 11.03 non-convulsive epilepsy. The listings include specific required criteria:
- Convulsive epilepsy (grand mal or psychomotor) must occur more than once a month despite at least three months of prescribed treatment
- Non-convulsive epilepsy (petit mal, psychomotor or focal) must happen more than once a week despite at least three months of prescribed treatment
If your condition is not severe enough to meet the requirements of the listing, you may still qualify for disability benefits. Due to the nature of seizures, some Claimants are not allowed to drive or work in environments where there is the probability of harm in the event of a seizure. Also, a Claimant who experiences seizures may also suffer from bone pain, fatigue, and may be unreliable with attendance at work due to having a seizure and the recovery time associated with the episode. These symptoms can limit your physical capabilities to such a magnitude that there are no jobs you can do, or at least no jobs that you know how to do, given your age, education, and experience.
Premier Disability Services, LLC has extensive experience assisting claimants who suffer from Seizure Disorders to obtain Social Security Disability benefits. If you suffer from a Seizure Disorder and you are unable to work, please contact our office for a free evaluation.