Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Spinal Stenosis Social Security Disability SSI - Applying for Disability

Spinal stenosis is given consideration in the social security administration's impairment listing manual under the category of musculoskeletal imppairments. More specifically, attention is given to this condition under listing 1.04, titled disorders of the spine. For some discussion of this listing, you may wish to view this page on Disability which also leads to another page that discusses degenerative disc disease: Social Security Disability and disorders of the spine, including spinal stenosis and disc herniation.

The following pages linked below provide basic information on how the social security administration makes decisions on cases, how to check the status of a pending claim with social security, what to do if an SSD or SSI case gets denied, when to consider getting representation on a disability claim, and the issue of disability back pay.

1. How does Social Security decide if I am Disabled ?
2. Social Security Disability Status on a Case
3. If you lose your disability case (what happens next)
4. Social Security Disability Benefits - collected pages
5. When should you get an attorney for a Social Security Disability or SSI claim?
6. Social Security Back Pay

What follows is basic information on Spinal Stenosis:

Spinal stenosis is characterized by spinal canal narrowing, which compresses the spinal cord and nerves. Generally, normal degenerative processes in the spine cause spinal stenosis, however there may be other causes such as a herniated or ruptured disc, tumor, or osteoporosis. Spinal stenosis usually occurs in the cervical or lumbar spine.

Cervical spinal stenosis affects males more often than females between the ages of forty and sixty. Symptoms of cervical spine stenosis might include upper extremity numbness, weakness of both upper and lower extremities, gait problems, sensory deficits, and possibly the loss of sphincter control. Treatment options for cervical spinal stenosis might include surgical procedures such as laminectomy, decompression surgery, or hemilamenectomy, physical therapy, or the use of a collar to help support the neck.

Lumbar spinal stenosis generally occurs in individuals who are over the age of fifty as a result of conditions such as degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis, or hypertrophy of the facet joints. Symptoms of lumbar spine stenosis might include leg pain or tingling, and lower back pain.

Most of the leg pain symptoms are known as sciatica. What is sciatica? Sciatica is a term used to describe leg, buttock, back, and foot pain that results from the compression of the sacral lumbar nerve roots or the sciatic nerve. Surprisingly the most common form of sciatica involves the sacral lumbar nerve roots rather than the sciatic nerve. Treatment options for individuals who suffer from lumbar spinal stenosis might include weight loss, walker (postural change to relieve pain), activity changes, and steroids to reduce inflammation. More severe case of lumbar stenosis may require surgical procedures such as laminectomy and forminotomy to correct spinal cord and nerve compression.

Of course, both lumbar and cervical stenosis may be treated with the use of steroids and pain medications to help improve an individual's quality of life. Additionally, European countries have been using implants to treat conditions such as herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and degenerative disc disease for years. However these implants have not been used in the United States until recently (FDA finally approved the use of implants in 2007).

Studies seem to indicate that implant surgery to replace damaged discs relieves pain and provides more normal movement of the spine, and may radically change the prognosis for individuals who suffer from degenerative processes or injuries to the spine that result in damage to the spinal discs.

Return to the Social Security Disability SSI Benefits Blog

Disability in the Various States:

Georgia Disability
Massachusetts Disability
Illinois Disability
Indiana Disability