Hepatitis refers to an inflammatory condition of the liver. It's commonly caused by a viral infection, but there are other possible causes of hepatitis. These include autoimmune hepatitis and hepatitis that occurs as a secondary result of medications, drugs, toxins, and alcohol. is a liver condition that affects both children and adults. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, you may be able to get Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income benefits. Our team of attorneys at Hoglund Law Offices has advised our clients on thousands of Social Security claims. To help you understand the benefits of calling us, we offer some of the legal advice we give our clients below.
- Make sure that you are communicating clearly with your primary health care provider about the severity of your symptoms
Proper foundation for a claim for Social Security Disability claim begins with true and accurate information. When your doctor asks about details about your condition, be prepared at your visit to give details about what you experience and how often and severe these symptoms are. Common symptoms of Hepatitis can include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, pain, jaundice, and dehydration.
- Visit a hepatologist (liver specialist) when possible and get the proper testing to diagnose the severity of your condition
Medical opinions from a specialist are generally given the greatest weight in appeals and Social Security Disability hearings. In addition to having a greater insight/education than a typical general practitioner, a hepatologist will be able to provide testing that can be used to give an idea how severe your liver condition is. Several tests are available for this, but the most widely used test detects antibody counts associated with viral loads.
- Abstain from alcohol and street drugs
Hepatitis can arise from long-term alcohol abuse. It can also aggravate existing hepatitis. If you are ingesting alcohol, non-prescribed medications and/or street drugs, you will likely be considered non-compliant in your treatment. Although Social Security can take sobriety into consideration, it can also blame your disabling symptoms on your ongoing behavior. This can cause denials.
- Maintain regular treatment and compliance
Applicants seeking Social Security Disability need to have a complete and thorough record of their condition and treatment. Maintaining compliance with medications and regular doctor visits will show Social Security’s decisionmakers a roadmap of your condition and its varying levels of severity. A complete record will account for times when your condition may have slipped into a range where an award of benefits is warranted thereafter.
- Understand that your diagnosis may change
Even with proper treatment and compliance, it is possible that Hepatitis can lead to liver failure. In the event of liver failure, a liver transplant may be the next course of treatment. For the purposes of Social Security Disability, this condition is evaluated under a different standard than Hepatitis and should be reevaluated by your attorney if this occurs.