Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a chronic condition characterized by widespread muscle pain, fatigue and tenderness in specific areas of the body.
While it is a condition that can significantly impact an individual’s ability to work and function, it can be difficult to diagnose and prove to the Social Security Administration (SSA) as a disability.
Fibromyalgia does not have any specific tests or imaging that can confirm its presence. Instead, a doctor generates and diagnosis based on the patient’s symptoms, a physical examination and a medical history. The National Library of Medicine’s criteria for fibromyalgia includes a history of widespread pain lasting for at least 3 months and the presence of tender points (specific areas of the body that are painful when pressed).
SSA’s evaluation of fibromyalgia
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has its own criteria for evaluating fibromyalgia as a disability. The SSA considers the patient’s symptoms such as pain and fatigue. They also assess the patient’s heir ability to function in daily life and perform work-related activities.
Applying for Social Security Disability
In order for Social Security Disability (SSD) to approve a candidate for benefits, an individual must prove that their condition makes it impossible for them to work or perform other activities. Also, the application process for SSD benefits can be long and complex. It is important for the individual to provide detailed and accurate information about their condition, including any medical records, treatment records and statements from their healthcare providers.
Finding a trusted professional to help navigate the competing diagnoses and the complexities of the system may prove useful in securing disability benefits.