Can I Get Social Security Disability For An Amputation?

Oct 17, 2011 Comments Off on Can I Get Social Security Disability For An Amputation? by

Don't Blame Yourself If You Can't Do This

Question: Can I get Social Security disability for an amputation?

Answer: Maybe. It all depends upon what kind of amputation, why the amputation was done, what problems you may have as a result of the amputation and how old your are.

The first factor is what kind of amputation. Obviously, an amputation of your little finger isn’t as big a deal as an above knee amputation of your leg. The amputation of your arm may not be as strong a factor in proving disability as you might think. Social Security believes that there are a lot of jobs that can be done by a one-armed person. I think that’s the case when you’re talking about someone who was born missing an arm or lost an arm as a child. I am not so sure that is the case if you lose an arm, particularly your dominant arm as an adult but there is only so much I can do about Social Security’s attitudes on this subject. Also, an above knee amputation is a bigger deal than a below knee amputation.  Most of the time, people adjust to below knee amputations much better than you might think. If the person doesn’t have stump problems and is healthy otherwise, life and work can go on in a fairly normal way with a below knee amputation.

The reason why the amputation was done is important for several reasons. An amputation due to the effects of diabetes is a bad sign because, no matter how well the amputation itself goes, the amputation is a sign that the diabetic’s health overall may be poor. In that sort of case, I would be looking at the client’s general health at least as much as the amputation. An amputation due to trauma is the exact opposite but it has its own problems. Traumatic amputations often leave behind stump problems and I believe that phantom limb problems are more common. By the way, phantom limb problems are not just weird. They can cause disabling pain.

The problems you might have as a result of an amputation are important. Most of the time, people can get a good fit on a leg prosthesis but not always. Sometimes people cannot get a good fit because of stump problems and recurring stump lesions. As mentioned above, some people have serious phantom limb problems.

Age always makes a big difference at Social Security. Being over 50 helps. Being over 55 helps a lot.

We’d love to talk with you about your Social Security disability case. From Durham to Wilson, from Henderson to Morehead City, we help North Carolina residents with Social Security problems.

Attorney Posts

About the author

Charles Hall is the lead attorney for the Charles Hall Law Firm in Raleigh, NC. He has been practicing in the Social Security Disability law field since 1979, is published, and is ready to help new clients win their benefits in North Carolina.