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James L McLeod

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Posted on Wednesday, March 21, 2001 - 11:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Am I entitled to or do I even qualify for any type of disability due to a visual ipairment of my right eye.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Saturday, March 24, 2001 - 10:03 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

That is a question that it would be impossible to answer as stated. To be sure whether you might get disability for any condition, the only way to be sure is to talk to a local lawyer. There are many sorts of disability besides Social Security disability, which is the principal topic of this site.
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Anonymous

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Posted on Monday, April 02, 2001 - 3:38 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

HELLO WELL I WAS HIT IN THE EYE CAUSE DAMAGE TO MY RIGHT EYE I WORN GLASSES UNTIL I WAS IN MY TEEN BUT NOT SINCE THEN DUE TO THE FACT THAT MY SIGHT MY EYE SIGHT GETTING BAD OVER TIME I WAS HAVE HEADACHE MY VISUAL WAS GOT SO BAD I DECDIE TO GO TO A EYE DOCTOR AFTER NOT GOING TO THE DOCTOR IN TEN YEAR OR MORE THE DOCTOR TOLD ME THERE NOTHING HE COULD DO THAT EYE GLASSES WOULD NOT DO ME ANY GOOD CAN I APPLY FOR SSI
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Monday, April 09, 2001 - 4:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

If a doctor indicates you are legally blind, you should eventually get disability. There are special rules that make it a little easier for people who are blind to get disability, or to keep it when they try to work.

If you have significant vision problems in both eyes, that make it more difficult to work, that is a more complex question.

If you have an impairment in one eye only, you are probably going to have to find something else, such as severe headaches that interfere with concentration, to establish disability.

A local social security lawyer can better answer the question as to whether your situation justifies an SSI or social security disability claim.
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D.Fowler

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Posted on Thursday, June 28, 2001 - 1:44 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

what is the social security "grid" and what are the requirements to be label as disabled from blindness?

Reply by Paul:
See the preceeding answer for the best I can give as to proving disability by blindness.

The "grid" hardly applies to blindness. It is a set of rules that directs a finding of disabled or not disabled based on age, education, work experience, and degree of exertional limitations. The cases involving people with nonexertional limitations will not be controlled by the grids. Vision impairments are nonexertional.
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KIM MELTON

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Posted on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 7:56 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

CAN I RECEIVE SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY WITH HAVING IRITIS? SECOND FILING AND ON A RECONSIDERATION NOW. I AM 40 I HAVE HAD THIS SINCE 1995. CAN YOU HELP?

Reply by Paul Yes, if it is serious enough, and if you have worked enough. To win an SSI case you need not show you have worked, but need to show that your family has no income. But to win it needs to affect your ability to function in a work setting. In order to judge, you need to provide me with the limitations it causes in your case. Also your city and state.

(Message edited by admin on July 26, 2005)
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heather@inorbit.com

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Posted on Wednesday, October 31, 2001 - 4:53 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 28 years old, I have worked for 13 years, last five years as an accounting clerk. I have severe eye loss due to retinitis pigmentosa. It makes me lose my peripheal vision over the years till total blindness. I am also advised to stay out of the sunlight and glare of computers as much as possible as this will hasten the loss. I am also advised not to drive at all in the "dark" (evenings) and minimal during the day. There is no cure or treatments available. The SSA doctor remarked to me that I should not drive (I don't) and the numbers were VERY close to the numbers indicated in the book of qualifying conditions in the better eye and a bit worse in the other eye. I also have 80 - 90 percent of hearing loss ( I lost my hearing at 18 months, again no cure or treatments), I can hear 68% with my current hearing aid in quiet surroundings. The SSA doctor who tested for me that suggested to me that with "his" hearing aids brands I have the ability to hear up to 96%. First off I didn't know that the SSA doctors can suggest treatments. Secondly, for almost thirty years, I have been always told that the most I can hear from different doctors was 70% in optimum conditions (quiet). I was then denied disability stating that while I may not be working what I used to do and earn that kind of money, BUT I can get some different type of work earning a bit less but still enough to support myself. I would love to know what I can do without computers, have special phones and has to be before dark and where I suppose a bus will take me and all this for at least $10 an hour, 40 hours a week athough I was earning $17.98 an hour before.

I quit in April of 2000 because I was pregnant and my vision got significently worse, I was tripping over everything and was scared I would fall and harm the baby. I was also getting severe strains from the computer glare and was advised to avoid computers at that time to "save" my vision. I have not worked since.

Is the above enough to qualify? I have 55 days left to appeal. Can you suggest an attorney in the Miami area? Thank You so much for your help.

Reply by Paul
You have a very serious problem, and should definitely pursue a disability claim in addition to other avenues that might, if you are lucky, lead to employment. It seems to me that you are virtually legally blind, and have other problems, too.

If you get on disability, there are might be special programs that make it easier for you to experiment with working while you are drawing disability.

I would certainly get an attorney at this point; you have tried once on your own and been unsuccessful. If you have trouble getting an attorney right away, be sure to appeal on your own by going down to the Social Security office. GET A RECEIPT! That will give you a little extra time.

I will suggest an attorney by email.
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anonnymous

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Posted on Thursday, May 30, 2002 - 1:52 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I was born with congenital Nystagmus and am currently recieving SSI. Am I entitled to any further benefits? Where can I find out more about what I qualify for?
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mary alston

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Posted on Wednesday, January 22, 2003 - 12:21 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have been diagnosed with glaucoma i have lost all vision in righteye and have vision problems in the left eye also for 15 years i have been a sewing machine operator which i had to eventually stop because it became impossible to see how to do an efficient job with my vision loss i then took a cleaning job which i was unable to keep the sun was causing me to have severe headaches i was always bumping into things and sometimes hurting my self which was not only painful but very embarrising I started to become very nervous and started to feel as if there was always someone behind me my eyes are very sensitive to light and i now have a glare with my vision should i apply for disability benefits.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Wednesday, February 26, 2003 - 5:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Mary: Yes, you might apply, among other things. If, after you have done everything you can afford to improve your vision, you cannot see well enough to do ordinary tasks, and if a doctor will back you up in that, you have a good chance at a disability claim.
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Ted Fogg

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Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2003 - 12:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Dur to damage to my optic nerves from a brain tumor and diabetes, I have had poor vision and particulalrly little to no peripheral vision. Recently, my opthomologist said I could no longer drive because my vision was not good enough even with correction. Does this constitute a disability that is recognized by state or federal government?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Friday, April 18, 2003 - 4:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Ted, possibly, depending of course on how severe the impairment is. You should get a careful measurement of your visual fields, which is the range of peripheral vision for each eye; and of your central visual acuity, and your visual efficiency, which is the measure of both factors taken together. With these measurements a good lawyer will probably be able to tell if you meet a listing. If you do not exactly meet a listing, you can still be found disabled if you cannot see to do any useful work.
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misty traweek

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Posted on Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 8:02 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

dear paul,
i am 25 years old and my vision is 20/400 without my glasses. my eye doctor says that even with glasses, imy vision can't be corrected to 20/20. my vision gets a little worse each year. i also have severe headaches much more often.would you think i qualify for assistance? i have a 2 1/2 year old daughter. my husband works, but we are very low income.
thank you,
misty
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Sunday, November 02, 2003 - 5:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

The quality of your uncorrected vision, or uncorrected anything, is almost irrelevant in most disability claims. (The common exception is when you can prove that you cannot get the treatment.)

The crucial question in cases involving vision is how well you can see with best correction. You don't tell me what your corrected vision is, so I can't say.

The Snellen number, 20/20 or 20/400, tells how well you can see at a distance in the center of your field of vision. You also can be disabled because of narrowing of field of vision and difficulty with close vision, which is more relevant for work puroposes.

All eye doctors know what "legally blind" means, and if your doctor will say you are that, you can probably get benefits without an attorney.

Headaches can be disabling, but that sort of case is difficult to prove. If that is your main basis for your claim, get a lawyer before you file, even, and develop your case carefully.

Take care and good luck.
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mbjbajjc

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Posted on Sunday, December 28, 2003 - 3:16 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I lost my left peripheral vision due to surgery 12 years ago. I have struggled daily with this condition. I changed my career direction after I lost my vision. I am a certified teacher now. I struggle with the paper work-grading. I bump into students all the time. I bang into furniture in the classroom and many times hurt myself and others. I have driven for this many years, but have always hidden this disability. I was told by an optometrist 11 years ago that I shouldn't drive or couldn't legally drive. This wasn't feasible as I am usually the primary driver for my children, now teenagers. I have been in four accidents that weren't my fault---others pulled out in front of me. Ironically the accidents occurred on my left side. I had right of way in each incident. This year I have many more kids in my classroom to keep an eye on and I am struggling. It is becoming a liability issue as I deal with MANY behavior problems. I am looking at the possibility of trying to get social security disability. I was never told this when I lost the vision. Complicated situation. I have learned to accomodate for my condition, but it is increasingly getting more difficult. The demands of the job are overwhelming due to the paper work involved. Can you give any advice on whether I could qualify for disability or would it put me in the poor house if I do? I am struggling to either stay in hiding with my disability or come out and have relief. Any help would be appreciated.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Wednesday, April 28, 2004 - 2:20 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

mbjbajjc: All opthalmologists know how to tell if someone is "legally blind." If you are so classified, you should be able to get Social Security disability with less trouble than most people have. If you are not "legally blind" you still might have a chance; get a detailed report from your doctor and sit down with it in a good SS lawyer's office.

Of course, as you probably know, legally blind people are not allowed to drive.

While you still have a job, you must be positive that you have all possible long and short term disability benefits that might be available to you.

I would talk to a good Social Security lawyer before I went out of work, in order to try to minimize any possible time without income.

You might look into a less demanding job that would enable you to earn your full state retirement.

Take care and good luck.
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murlesl

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Posted on Thursday, April 22, 2004 - 10:58 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am totally blind and receive ssi can I get approved to receive a disability check or is this a disability check
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Paul McChesney (Admin)

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Posted on Wednesday, April 28, 2004 - 2:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, it is, but there is another kind of disability check, too. It is called a Social Security Disability check. To get it ,you have to have worked a certain amount. That amount is less if you are legally blind.
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Mickey
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Posted on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 6:12 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My best eye corrected vision is 20/200 which makes me legally blind. I have talked with social security service reps, others, a disability lawyer and reviewed this site. Am I correct in assumming that I should qualify for and receive disability payments when I apply?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 6:29 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Mickey, if you are legally blind, a disability award should be almost automatic if you are not working; you should not even need an attorney.
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Marie
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Posted on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 10:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have chronic granulomatous iridocyclitis caused by sarcoidosis. I have had a calcified lens removed from my right eye which was replaced with an intraocular lens. I have no peripheal vision in right eye, and this disease has now caused glaucoma. I also have this desease in my left eye. I can't get Rx glasses because my visual acuity will not remain stable due to the inflammation this disease causes. Both of my eyes are damaged because of this, making my overall vision poor. I can no longer do the work I've done for the past 30 years (data entry). I am 50 yrs, old. Do you think I should apply for disability? Thank you kindly.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 6:28 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Marie, almost certainly, unless you are now working, which I understand that you are not. There are several diseases that cause chronic inflammation of the eye which causes the cornea - the window at the front of the eye - to keep changing shape, or causes the eye to keep changing shape. As you mention, even if you would be able to see well enough to work with a certain set of glasses on one day, if the inflammation keeps changing the shape of the cornea or eye so that you will not be able to see well enough to work on a predictable basis, you cannot work. And, pain from glaucoma or inflammation can be a factor. Be sure you have a supportive doctor.
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deana verner
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Posted on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 12:43 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My name is Mark Railey,I am 49 years old and I have one eye.I lost my eye when I was 18 years old.I have been diagnosed with glaucoma in my excisting eye.I get frequint head aches,problems seeing,irratation in the eye socket where the eye is missing.I have had 6 eye surgurysI obviously have to wear eye glasses to see,with out them my sight is horriable.Even with the glasses I still experience pain and irritation.I was wondering if I should file for disability?I have been in the work force over 30 years.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 6:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

That is hard to say. I can say some things:
-There are jobs for folks with one eye, if that is their only problem.
-If glasses can correct a vision problem, it is not disabling.
-If both the width of the area you can see in (your "visual field")is normal, and you can see well to read with glasses (your "central visual acuity" is normal), and you have no other problems, that would not be disabling. As your central visual acuity and visual field deteriorate, whether or not you are disabled becomes a very complicated question that would take careful study to answer.
-Glaucoma can sometimes cause fairly significant pain. If that pain makes it impossible for you to attend to work, that can be disabling.
-If you miss a lot of work because of things like operations, on an unscheduled basis, and will continue to do so, that can be disabling.

That's the long answer. The short answer is get your medical records and sit down with a good disability lawyer, preferably before you stop working, and take your next steps very carefully.
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Dan Williams
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Posted on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 12:34 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have sarcoidosis that affects the eyes. My vision is 20/40 in one eye and 20/100 in the other. I deal with iritis all the time and even with the best glasses I cannot read detail on the Tv. I drive a forklift at my work and fortunately do not have to deal with detail. However if I were to need to take a visual test to renew my driver licenseI know I would not pass. Would that not qualify me for disability? I have been on my job for over 30 years and I am 54 years old.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Wednesday, September 15, 2004 - 5:05 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

First, if you are legally blind, you can get disability fairly easily. You are not yet, and I hope you never get there, but all eye doctors know what "legally blind" means, and if you are ever told that, you know you should win your case. 20/40 is not legally blind.

If you are not legally blind, the test for disability based on vision alone is complex; it is based on both your "visual field," meaning how far to the side, up and down you can see when you fix your eyes on a spot in front of you, and your "central visual acuity," meaning how well you can see at a spot in front of you with the glasses that help you most.

If you are not legally blind, and your vision is stable, disability based on eyesight is based on the product of your visual field and your central visual acuity, so that the better your central vision, the worse your visual field must be in order to establish disability.

I know that's confusing; the bottom line is that it is too complicated for me to answer.

On top of that, if you have a disease like sarcioidosis that causes ever varying impairment, it becomes more difficult to correct vision with glasses; the prescription that worked yesterday might not work tomorrow.

Maybe it would be wise to get your medical records and sit down with an attorney that handles a lot of these cases.

Take care and good luck.
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joseph mantia
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Posted on Tuesday, December 21, 2004 - 1:36 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am a 53 year old male and i've been on SSD for about two years and 8 months. My review is coming up in april of 2005. I;m quite concerned about keeping my benifits very worried with anxiety.When i first was rewarded my benifits about three years ago, my condition was blind, in left eye from scars and glacoma and a vision of about 20/150 in the right eye,and depressiion. I had a coneal transplant in the right eye about a year and a half ago, and it took that long to get to about 20/35 with glasses. During that time my vision was very unstable and at the prescent time it's still unstable and this is the secomd coneal transplant in seven years AND FOUR GLACOMA SURGERYS i still have glacoma in the right eye as well as a cataract. I take three different medications for my glacoma and still take a rejection medication AND I"M STILL UNDER DOCTORS CARE. Now i also have back problems large diffuse disk bulge L 5 nerve root impingerment bilateral and a form of inflammtion and arthirtis ( etc ) from a moderate to severe condition, stated on the MRI report I take two forms of medication for my back and expected to get epidoral shoots soon and possibly surgery. I have trouble siting for 20 minutes standing, and walking. with pain,an numbness in the right foot.(this is due to bad posture from playing drums all my life) and i still suffer from depression. I've been a muscian(drummer) all my life with no other background need to read music exstensively in my job but i feel with my present conditions,I;M STILL DISABLED in my field because of the strain with one eye and unstablity in the eye and age and severe pain and numbness in my leg and foot and somtimes my finger tips. Since i;ve been out of work in this field i;m also a displaced worker from being disabled for three years
my question to you sir. even though there is improvement in my right eye but an unstabled condition,(and only have one eye), and now back problems and still have depression and high blood pressure. What are my chances of keeping my benifits at this stage of the game? Concerned and worried please contact me soon. Jodi and Joe
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Friday, December 31, 2004 - 9:04 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

There are several ways that a vision problem can be disabling. One is legal blindness, where your vision is always bad. But an unstable vision is about as useless; no one will hire someone if they are not going to be able to work on an unpredictable basis; the numbers vary, but certainly if you are going to be out of commission more than 3 days a month or more than 36 days a year on an unpredictable basis, most vocational experts will say that you are disabled.


You have a good shot at continuing benefits, but you need to be ready to appeal quickly if they try to cut you off.

The fact that your primary problem has improved makes it more likely for them to cut you off.

But your condition has also worsend; you need to be sure that appears in the record. Be sure they get good records of each of your new problems.

If you get a termination notice, be sure to appeal, in person, within 10 days, and get a receipt proving you did so. If so, you can get benefits continued while you appeal. This will protect you from immediate catastrophe.

If they try to terminate you, you should immediately get legal aid involved, or else hire an attorney.
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Brian (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Monday, February 14, 2005 - 4:25 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have applied for disability and been denied...I am blind in one eye and have high blood pressure.

In the statement they sent me .it has alot of limitations on it......I can't lift anything over 50 pds....25 pds occasionally...I can't be up on ladders...I can walk or stand for 6 hours in an 8 hour work day..I can't handle small objects...and so forth.

Do I need to hire a lawyer and reapply??
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, March 06, 2005 - 6:11 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, it would be a good idea to sit down and talk to someone who is good at disability to see if there is something that disables you.

If your only problem were that you were blind in one eye, you could probably work, provided the other eye worked. Blood pressure problems are usually, but not always, controllable by medicine, or cause no cripling symptoms: It is one of those odd problems that can kill you, but since it causes few symptoms until it does, you are not disabled.

However, there are some blood pressure problems that are disabling. For example, minimal exertion can cause some people's blood pressure to jump to very high levels, despite medication.

I also often find that if I ask people, "why are you disabled," they will name one or two problems that are not disabling, but if I ask them a bunch of questions, they will tell me about other problems that they did not realize were important. For example, the Administration's notice to you suggests that you might have some hand problems you have not mentioned.

For these last two reasons, you need to talk to someone who knows a lot about disability, to see if they can pull reasons for disability out of you, and you should probably keep appealing, to keep the case alive, until you do that.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Saturday, May 07, 2005 - 11:57 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

i am married with a 1yr old daughter. My husband is about to get out of the navy in one month. I have congenital astygmatism, i used to recieve ssi when i was in middle school(i am now 25) I just went and applied for my drivers permit.I could not pass the vision test and was sent to my eye doctor to fill out the vision report. My doctor said that i would only be able to drive 1/2 hr after sunrise and 1/2hr before sunset.He said that i just made it to be able to drive during the daylight. Can i get ssi benfits ! ( i was considered legally blind while recieving ssi.)
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Monday, May 30, 2005 - 7:29 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anonymous: I don't know. I don't understand your limitations well enough to say for sure. I guess get your medical reports and take them to a lawyer and after he or she asks a lot of questions, he or she might be able to say.

Take care.
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john nixdorf (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Tuesday, May 24, 2005 - 9:57 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My daughter is blind in her right eye, corrected to 20/30 in her left eye, but with a 40 degree field of view measured by the Goldmann field of view test. However, she has rotary nystagmus which prevents her from focussing on the target. She also has glaucoma (pressure in the left eye 26 at her exam last week).

Her doctor's judgment is that the Goldmann test overstates her field of vision but cannot give a quantitative estimate of by how much. The eye doctor's opinions (she's had many over the years) is that it is a miracle she functions as well as she does, and she has developed significant compensatory skills for her visual disability.

She is currently receiving SSI on the basis of "borderline intellectual function" (the primary code), and also glaucoma.

Any thoughts you may have on getting her reclassified as blind as the primary disability for SSI would be appreciated.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Tuesday, July 05, 2005 - 10:19 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

John:

If she has worked any, it would be an excellent idea to file a Social Security disability claim based on blindness. It takes less earnings to qualify under blindness than it does under any other condition. You should get your doctor to say she is effectively blind, and you should hire a lawyer to show him a copy of the listings and get detailed opinion showing why she meets the listings. She might get more money, and she would get Medicare.

If she has never worked, I am not sure why you would want to get the reclassification, or what benefit it would be; but there could be some advantage I don't know about.

Take care and good luck.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Monday, March 28, 2005 - 12:46 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

NC,age 51, BA math, computer prog/analyst-no work since downsized 2/04. Progressive problems conducting work due to ocular motor palsy left eye; Vision ok but eyes don’t work together with the left eye being exotropic causing double vision. I had 4 surgeries to correct this; have limited movement of left eye due to muscle adhesions. 3 ophthalmologists say more surgery would be difficult, compromising with little or no benefit & would risk eyesight to some extent. Says my condition will continue to worsen. Viewing a computer screen, reading, desk-type work for extended periods causes tremendous eye strain which results in eye pain, discomfort, headaches. I had difficulty concentrating, staying on & completing tasks. I don’t feel my eyes can take the demands continuing to work in my profession. Ophthalmologist supports my position. Also the situation creates anxiety and depression & with my eyes getting worse these emotional issues are at times incapacitating
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Saturday, April 23, 2005 - 12:29 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anonymous in NC: If you are "legally blind" you are disabled. All ophthalmologists know what "legally blind" means. Ask yours.

If not, the next question is whether you can do your old work. If you cannot look at a screen 8 hours a day, with an occasional break, you cannot do your old work.

The next question is whether you can do any other work. If you can see well enough to dig ditches, even though you cannot do your old work, you are going to have to find something besides your eye function to disable you.

Does pain in your eyes distract you from all work? Is the psychological condition severe even if you don't try to do the high stress work, and dig ditches instead?

Unless you are legally blind, you have a complex case, and I suggest you sit down and have a long talk with a lawyer BEFORE you quit work.

Be careful! This is a critical time in your life.

(Message edited by admin on May 29, 2005)
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Tuesday, July 26, 2005 - 10:30 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I made this comment to an earlier post:

If she has never worked, I am not sure why you would
want to get the reclassification [to blind], or what
benefit it would be; but there could be someadvantage
I don't know about.


This was the questionner's answer, which I thought was a good one.


The answer is twofold:

1. For the extra deduction I would get on my income
tax since I carry her as a dependent


2. Being classified as blind by the Social Security
Administration is the absolute "gold standard"
discussion stopper when you're dealing with government
bureaucrats. The Illinois Bureau of Blind Services
Bureau Chief remarked that my daughter could "function
as a sighted person" (right, aphakic in both eyes,
blind in the right, and a 33% visual efficiency in the
left).


My further response:
The only way I can think of to get her reclassified is to get her to do enough work to make her eligible for Social Security Disability - it takes less work to qualify if she is blind - and then file for Social Security Disability. There might be some other way I don't know about. I realize this will be impractical for many.
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E Taylor (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Tuesday, August 16, 2005 - 12:22 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I live in South Carolina and have a 5 years old son. He was shot in the eye by a bb gun at the beginning of the summer. He has 20/20 vision in his good eye and 20/200 in his bad eye. His bad eye can not be corrected with lenses because there is a crack in the back of the globe that goes across the retina. We have also been told that laser surgery would not correct his problem. His pupil is shaped like a football and he can not be out in the sun for very long as the light irritates his eye. Would he be eleigible for SSI and is there a family income cut off?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2005 - 3:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Ms. Taylor:


I don't think so, unless his bad eye causes serious problems beyond the simple loss of vision. If you close one eye, you can do almost everything you could do with both eyes open.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2005 - 9:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 36 years old and have worked for the past 19 yrs. I am legally blind in my left eye after receiving a hemorrage and detatched retina from an accident as a teenager. I have also been given a 9% imparment rating with permanent work restrictions (no repetitive bending or twisting and no lifting over 25 lbs) after having surgery for a ruptured disc which damaged the cyatic nerve. Can you tell me what my dissability rating would be or if I would quallify for any type benefits or employment assistance? Thank you for your assistance.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2005 - 3:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anonymous:

Loss of vision in one eye is rarely relevant to a disability case; almost every job can be done with one eye closed. the relevant question is the quality of vision in the remaining eye. If it is ok, the quality of your vision is not relevant to your case.

If you can read and write well, and your only limitation is that you cannot lift 25 pounds or perform repetitive work, that leaves a lot of sit down clerical work, like receptionist, etc.

If you cannot read well, the question becomes closer.

Often, when disability is not obvious from the list of problems someone gives me at first, I can ask a lot of questions and find a problem that they did not think to mention that is critical. If you want to think further about this, you should engage in such a conversation with a good Social Security lawyer.

Take care and good luck.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 9:09 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My mom is 53 and has glaucoma and histoplasmosis of the eyes, and while I am fairly confident that she would meet the qualifications for "legally blind", I am not 100% sure. She also has developed acute osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis in her hands, knees, and ankles. She also just suffered a minor stroke, which has left her weak on her right side. She has been a Wal-Mart employee (dept. manager, on her feet 8 hours a day) for about 20 years, and does not have a college degree. She also lives alone and drives 20 miles to work every day.
I know this may be a stupid question, but does it sound like she qualifies for Social Security/Disability? Where do I start? Also, if she does qualify, what do we do for health coverage?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2005 - 2:28 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anonymous:

If she is legally blind, she is supposed to win, but if she is legally blind, she is not supposed to be driving.

It sounds like she has a combination of limitations that well might qualify her for disability, even if not legally blind.

Two choices as to the next step: If you feel you and she can win this on your own, call 1 800 772 1213 or visit www.ssa.gov and file a claim. Hire an attorney if you are denied at the initial level.

If you want the help of an experienced person from the start, you can file and at the same time gather your medical records and sit down with an experienced lawyer, to ensure that the case develops the way you want it to. That will probably cost 25% of your back benefits.
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sammy (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Sunday, September 04, 2005 - 5:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

hi my name is sam and i have histoplasmosis in my left eye now its affectin my right and its hard for me to see clearly some time i went to 2 eye doctors i was label 20/60 in my vision the left one and 20/40 in my right eye and i have pain will i be able to get ssd.
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2005 - 2:09 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

20/40 is not bad enough to limit you seriously, but that just a measure of distance vision for the central part of the eye; there is field of vision, that is, how well you see out of the sides of your eyes, and near visual acuity; and there are some problems that make it hard for you to see well at all times. And some eye conditions cause so much pain that you cannot function; others cause only mild pain. So, in short, I cannot tell whether your condition is serious enough to disable you or not.

And then we have to worry about whether we can document your problem.

You can try asking again; but what you really need to do is get all your medicals and sit down with a lawyer who does a lot of this.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Tuesday, September 06, 2005 - 7:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have chronic Sarcoidosis ongoing since 1986 effecting my lungs, glands and joints also iritis in both my eyes . I am constantly using steroid drops (maxidex).My hearing has deteriorated too. In addition to this I have rheumatoid arthritis in neck, back, fingers and right knee. After working for 25 years I have now been made redundant. I'm just out of hospital after having scans and bronchoscopy. I am totally debilitated and have no energy left at all.Am I entitled to go on longterm disability as this needs to be checked on a regular basis ( ring shadows on both lungs ).
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2005 - 7:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anonymous:

If you cannot work, you certainly must file for both long term and Social Security. It sounds like you are in rough shape. Be sure to hire an attorney if you are turned down the first time for long term! Take care.
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Chris Fleck (Chrfleck)
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Posted on Tuesday, July 19, 2005 - 4:31 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 35 with diagnosed Type 1 Diabetes, and Neuropothy and Retinopothy. I went for my disability exam on July 11th here in Omaha, the doctor was not supposed to treat me for Diabetes, he gave me insulin samples. He filled out a form I needed for Health and Human Services saying I was unable to work because I was legally blind and had neuropothy in my feet. If he tells Social Security the same thing, will they award me disability for sure the first time?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Tuesday, August 02, 2005 - 7:07 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris, there is an excellent chance that you will be successful. Surely that doctor has told them enough to prove you disabled. "Legally blind" is supposed to be automatic disability. And if you are turned down, be sure to hire an attorney and appeal your claim.

Not frequently, but on a fairly regular basis, I see cases where the doctor selected by the Administration says that someone is disabled, but where they are turned down anyway. In the long run such cases are usually easy to win, but if that happens to you you still need to get a lawyer to get things straightened out.

Take care.
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Jason Bodary (Childoftheether)
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Posted on Wednesday, November 09, 2005 - 8:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My boyfriend is 23, and has worked in call centers on computers since he was 16. The last month or so he has not been able to work because his vision has become very blury and makes it next to impossible for him to see anything on a computer screen. His eye doctor today said he's lost about 10% of his vision to the blurriness so far, and as of yet they don;t know whats caused it.. Is it possible to get disability in a case like this?
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kathleen Kridler (Kkridler)
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Posted on Thursday, November 17, 2005 - 10:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 47, a graphic designer for the last 20 years. 2+ years of college. I developed myopic macular degeneration about a year ago, and have recently become legally blind )NO central fields of vision - peripheral only). I turned in my drivers lisence, I use a cane some of the time. I am 20/300 in my best eye, correted, 20/400 in the other one. (about 20/800 uncorrected). I have filed for state disability (VA) and I am worried about qualifying for SSD. This is a permanent disability, and will eventually get worse. I cannot read without extreme magnification. I can't lift or do strenuous work because my retinas can detach. I can eventually retrain to do something else, but I made a very good salary. Will they turn me down because I can still do menial tasks? Or do I have to be able to do something comparable? I am still working, barely, (it's a joke, my employer is being very kind and keeping me until they hire and train my replacement April 1) so I was not going to apply until them. I also thought I would be able to work until then, but mostly I outsource my work and make phone calls. Do I have a decent case? Will I be allowed to go back to school to retrain without losing benefits? Will my minor children get benefits if I do? Thanks. GREAT forum!
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Matt (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Monday, March 06, 2006 - 2:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 21 years old, i have worked since i got out of school for a construction company and machine operator. A year and a half ago i got into a car accident because my eyes blurred out for a few seconds. I have juvenile diabeties so i went and under gone tests on my eyes, and everything came back ok. Nothing has happened since that one time. My diabetes doctor said because my blood sugar is a little high that i should not be able to drive, so i got my licence taken away and have no idea when i will get it back. Beacuse of this, i am unable to work do to no transportation, is there any possible thing i can do about this?
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Dawn Bradford (Bradforddawn)
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Posted on Monday, March 06, 2006 - 2:28 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 44 years old. Three years ago I was diagnosed with viral menengitis. The virus was not identified for one month even though I was not getting better. One month after the onset of my menengitis, I started having problems with one eye (floaters, flashes, pain and redness) I looked in the phone book and made an appt. with an eye doctor. After seen he sent me to Miami to Bascom Palmer Eye Institute for emergency treatment of ARN acute retinal necrosis. It was found in both eyes and was the virus from my menengitis had spread from the brain and the optic nerve to the retina and was eating it away. Antiviral meds were given, laser surgery performed and about 1 month later I was much better and back at work. Since then my vision has deteriorated slowly. I also have been on steriods because my adrenal glands shut down and never would work again. So I have been on replacement steriod treatment for 3 years. Now I have 20/400 in both eyes with corrective lenses, cataracts in both eyes (which can not be removed for fear the retina will detach and other problems may arise)and glaucoma in the left. I have had every test known to mankind done. I have lost the central vision due to my retinal deterioration. Continued...See second posting
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Dawn Bradford (Bradforddawn)
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Posted on Monday, March 06, 2006 - 2:29 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Continued from above...

The virus is dormant now but could come back anytime in my lifetime. It could come back again and again. Basically, the virus was shingles. I also have periferal vision loss in both eyes. I have bone marrow edema and bone loss due to the steriods also. I have to be very careful not to get sick because of the adrenal insufficiency. I have had pneumonia twice in the last 5 months. So I need to stay away from the office germs. I stopped work in October of 05. I recently filed for disability on line and dropped off some medical records, birth certificate and copies of my doctor's disability forms claiming the above disabilities that were sent to my work. I have sent a request to all my medical providers to send records to the SSD office ASAP. Hoping this will expedite things along. I am a single parent with no income since October. Luckily, I had some savings that is now gone. I cannot drive at all. My vision is so poor that I can only see shadows of large objects. And my daily health is poor with fatigue, depression, extreem nausea. I have worked since I was 15 years of age most of the time as clerical / secretary work. I relayed the above on my application. Thanks for your help. Is there anything else I can do to expidite my case with SSD? What are my chances of getting approved the first time around?
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Paul McChesney (Admin)
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Posted on Sunday, March 12, 2006 - 12:11 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Dawn, If your remaining vision in the better eye after best correction is 20/200 or less, you are legally blind. If you are legally blind you are supposed to be found disabled for Social Security Disability and SSI.

20/200 is a number. If it is a product of a valid test, there should be no argument about your disability. I would be surprised if your are denied at the initial level, and perhaps you do not need a lawyer at that level.

Q. What are my chances of getting approved the first time around?

A. Excellent. But if you are denied, the picture in your medical record must be different from the one you have drawn here, and you need a lawyer to fix it. Take care.
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Anonymous
 

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Posted on Monday, April 24, 2006 - 12:13 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am 36 years old, married and a mother of two children from a previous marriage. I have retinitus pigmentosa and it is quickly progressing. If I am declared legally blind, how does my husband and his income play into my ability to receive disability benefits? My husband works seasonally (10 months out of the year) and makes approximately $26000/yr.
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teresa (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted on Monday, May 08, 2006 - 1:13 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

i have double vision caused by a buckle in my left eye from a retina detachment surgery. i got fired from my job as a high speed typist because i couldnt see as fast any more..i did typing for 30 years ..i am 49 years old and also have positional vertigo and a prolasped uterus.so that means no lifting, bending, pushing,dragging,pulling. and now that my double vision stops me from speed reading and seeing find details what are my chances of getting disability ? i can not read fast anymore. the place that fired me told me they are not a charity and no one else wants me in their dept. and they were hoping i would just quit. there was nothing for me there anymore..and this is a big company ..

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This site is maintained by Paul McChesney, an attorney who has been practicing disability law for around 25 years in North and South Carolina.

If the subject of disability is important to you, or if you want to find out more about us, you should explore the rest of this site. To do so, go to our homepage, Carolina-disability.com.

Please don't take anything on this site as legal advice! Nor should you take any action, or fail to take any action, based on any communication provided through this site. Before doing that, it would be wise to sit down and talk to an attorney in his or her office. Please also see our disclaimer at this link: Disclaimer. We want to be as helpful as we can be on a website; please thank us by doing this.