Lyme disease can certainly provide the basis for a successful Social Security disability claim. However, it can be a long road.
I saw a recent news story regarding a Connecticut man suffering from chronic Lyme disease, who is also struggling to have his Social Security disability claim granted. His story is all too common.
Chronic lyme disease often involves headaches, chronic fatigue and pain. In addition, for this gentlemenan in Connecticut, bright light hurts his eyes; loud noises bother him; his joints hurt him constantly.
There is no specific Social Security listing for Lyme disease. A Lyme disease disability claim is evaluated under Listing 14.09D Inflammatory Arthritis, which is not a precise fit. That means, as a practical matter, a Lyme disease claim will usually proceed to steps 4 and 5 of Social Security's sequential evaluation process. Further, claims involving chronic pain can be difficult for DDS to evaluate, so this gentlemen may have to wait for a hearing on his disability claim.
This is the timely topic, because the ticks that carry Lyme disease reappear this time of year. If you have Lyme disease or suspect that you do, you need a Lyme-literate primary care physician, and an infectious disease specialist who handles Lyme cases. Likewise, for your Social Security disability claim, retain a Social Security specialist.