What Respiratory Disorders Qualify for Disability Benefits?

Picture of a woman sitting on couch using an oxygen treatment

If your respiratory disorder makes it impossible for you to work, you may be able to get the benefits you need to support yourself and your family.

Common Lung Diseases and Breathing Problems for Disability Claims

The Social Security Administration’s Blue Book includes medical conditions that the SSA considers disabling. However, having a condition in the book does not automatically mean you qualify for benefits. Respiratory disorders are divided into several categories in the Blue Book, including:

  • Asthma
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Sleep Related Breathing Disorder
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Chronic Pulmonary Insufficiency
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Chronic Restrictive Ventilatory Disease
  • Cor Pulmonale Secondary to Chronic Pulmonary Vascular Hypertension
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Mycobacterial, Mycotic, and Other Chronic Lung Infections
  • Pneumoconiosis
  • Lung Transplant
  • Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
  • Allergies
  • Emphysema
  • Pneumonia
  • Pulmonary Tuberculosis (TB)
  • Respiratory Failure
  • Sarcoidosis

Qualifying for Disability Benefits

Keep in mind that the Social Security Administration has rules for assessing whether or not someone is considered disabled. Although millions of Americans suffer from some form of lung disease, SSD benefits are only available to those with severe conditions. To get SSD payments, a person with a medical condition must meet SSA requirements and criteria. The SSA definition requires the following of disability:

  • You’ve been disabled for at least a year, or your condition is expected to last at least a year or is terminal.
  • Because of your condition, you are unable to perform the work you previously did
  • You are unable to train for a new job due to your medical condition.

Qualifying For Benefits Using the Medical-Vocational Allowance

It’s possible that your condition doesn’t fulfill the Blue Book’s standards for disability, but you could still be eligible for the medical-vocational allowance. The medical-vocational allowance is a set of rules that determines whether you can work based on your medical condition. To evaluate whether you can perform the demands of your job, the SSA will look at your age, educational background, work experience, and work history, as well as your residual function capacity (RFC). Given the limits of your condition, your RFC determines the greatest amount of labor you can do.

Talk to a Skilled Michigan Social Security Disability Attorney 

If you have a respiratory illness of any kind that you suspect may qualify you for Social Security Disability benefits, you should file your claim as soon as possible. Although the application process can be challenging, the Disability Attorneys of Michigan are available to help you. Our attorneys are passionate about helping people like you throughout Metro Detroit and Southeast Michigan to pursue the federal disability benefits they are due. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation case consultation at 800-701-5524.

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I will never forget you and the hard work you did to secure my Social Security Disability benefits. Thank you!

- Christine C.