When you woke up in the hospital, the first thing you did was wiggle your toes and flex your fingers. You knew that a heavy blow to the back could cause paralysis, and you wanted to make sure it hadn’t happened to you. You could feel your limbs—even though they were in terrible pain—but at least it meant your injury wouldn’t be permanent, right?

Maybe not. According to your last scan at Morristown Medical Center, you’re not going to be able to stand or walk without pain for some time—which basically means you’re not going to be able to work. How can you tell if Social Security can provide for you and your family while you’re unable to earn a living?

Do I Have to Have a Specific Spinal Injury to Qualify for Social Security Disability?

The Social Security Administration allows disability payments for a variety of spinal conditions, including many of the following:

  • Disc injury – Any injury to the discs in the vertebrae can cause complications during healing and for the rest of the patient’s life. A fractured vertebrae can cause the victim immeasurable pain and the inability to move, but also increases the risk of work related osteoarthritis, facet arthritis, and degenerative disc disease. Depending on the location of injury, a broken disc may also cause weakness or paralysis in the legs, causing spasticity, walking difficulties, and even the inability to control bladder or bowel functions.
  • Nerve damage – In many back injuries, the nerves running through the spinal column may be compressed, causing pain and lost motor function. One such condition is spinal stenosis, which narrows the spaces that house the nerves and can cause pain in the lower back and through the legs. Loss of feeling in the legs often causes clumsiness, persistent falling, or difficulty walking.
  • Abnormal curvature of the spine – Workers who suffer from irregular spinal growth, such as scoliosis, lordosis, or kyphosis, can have any number of physical problems that prevent them from earning a living. Patients will often have trouble walking and suffer from chronic pain, but will typically have problems throughout the body. Spinal abnormalities can place pressure on the internal organs, causing breathing problems, cardiac issues, and even shorten the patient’s life span.

What If My Condition Isn’t Listed Here?

Even if your condition isn’t specifically mentioned on the SSA Disabilities Guide, you could still be able to get payments for your injury. Send us an email via the contact form on this page to let us know about your condition so we can let you know how to proceed in your case.

Manfred Ricciardelli
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Morristown Workers' Compensation Lawyer