Disabling Condition: Immune System Disorders

by Editorial Board on September 6, 2010 · 2 comments

in Immune System

Autoimmune disorders (lupus, systemic vasculitis, polymyositis, dermatomyositis, undifferentiated & mixed connective tissue disease, scleroderma, ankylosing spondylitis,) HIV, Immune deficiency disorders/infections (sepsis, meningitis, pneymonia, septic arthritis, endocarditisit, sinusitis,   rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory arthritis (gout, etc).

Arthritis/other connective tissue disorders (lupus, gout)

  1. Do you see a rheumatologist?
  2. Have you had lab work?
  3. Have you had x-rays of the painful and/or swollen joints?
  4. Are you sensitive to light?
  5. Do your fingers get cold and/or turn purple?
  6. Do you get rashes?
  7. Have you been on prednisone?


1. Have you had a lab test to establish HIV infection?

2. Do you know what your T-cell count is?  A count below 200 is considered significant but no longer meets the listing.

3. Are you on the cocktail medications?  If so, do you experience side effects?

Autoimmune disorders arise when the immune system attacks the body’s healthy organs and tissues as though they were foreign invaders.  They are diagnosed by rheumatologists who follow classification criteria established by the American College of Rheumatology.  The criterion usually requires a certain number of characteristics of the disorder to be present.  While some can be observed upon examination, some of the criteria require lab work or diagnostic studies.

Social Security revised the listing criteria for these disorders in 2008.  Now, these disorders will be found disabling when there are repeated flares (3 times a year, lasting 2 wks) and a marked limitation in one of the following:

  • Activities of daily living
  • Social functioning
  • Completing tasks in a timely manner due to deficiencies in concentration.

The HIV listing has changed substantially since it was first added in 1993.  Due to the availability of drug therapy to prevent HIV from turning into full blown AIDS, many individuals are able to live a longer life span, although the quality of life may suffer.  To meet the HIV listing the individual must have:

  1. Objective proof of the HIV infection and a manifestation (along with the listing criteria for the manifestation).
  2. Objective proof of the HIV infection repeated manifestations (without the listing criteria for the manifestation.
  3. Significant side-effects to the medications which prevent manifestations but which affect functioning.
    1. What are the manifestations?  See the list below.
      1. Infections (bacterial, fungal, protozoan, viral, sepsis, sinusitis)
      2. Cancer
      3. skin lesions
      4. Cognitive loss
      5. wasting syndrome
      6. diarrhea
See if you qualify for Social Security Disability
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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Holly Anderson September 13, 2011 at 3:29 am

Why is’nt MS ever listed in your items more Disablet insurence? There is alot of listings for Lupus? I am getting socilty. But would like to help mt husband with the house hold.

Whitney Harper September 16, 2011 at 9:25 am

There is information on our site about MS. It is listed under neurological, let us know if you have trouble finding it.

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