Can I automatically qualify for Social Security disability benefits if I have lymphoma?

bone marrow transplant for lymphomaIn many cases, the answer to this question is “yes,” you can automatically qualify for disability benefits if you suffer from lymphoma. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a condition that is listed in the Social Security Administration’s blue book of disability listings. This means that some patients may automatically be approved for disability benefits.

Common Lymphoma Symptoms

When lymphoma symptoms prevent patients from being able to support themselves financially, Social Security disability benefits can be a valuable lifeline. Examples of some of the more common symptoms of this condition include the following:

  1. Weight loss
  2. Fatigue
  3. Swollen lymph nodes
  4. Fever
  5. Anemia
  6. Weakness

Treatments for Lymphoma

Social Security disability benefits can also help lymphoma patients focus on their treatment rather than worrying about how they are going to pay their bills. Some of the treatments that victims may have to endure include the following:

  1. Radiation therapy
  2. Chemotherapy
  3. Surgical procedures
  4. Other biological therapies, such as interferon

Qualifying for Disability Benefits Due to Lymphoma

In order to qualify automatically for disability benefits as a result of lymphoma, your Social Security disability application should:

  1. Include a diagnosis of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
  2. Demonstrate that the lymphoma is aggressive, also known as diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and that the aggressive lymphoma did not go away after an initial round of chemotherapy or radiation treatment.
  3. In the alternative, demonstrate that you suffer from indolent lymphoma, also known as mycosis fungoides or follicular small cleaved cell lymphoma that requires more than one chemotherapy or radiation treatment within a time period of one year.

It is also important to note that if your lymphoma required that you obtain a bone marrow transplant or a stem cell transplant, you can automatically qualify for disability benefits for a time period of one year.

As is the case with all Social Security disability eligibility determinations, your application must be complete in order to recover benefits.

If you are interested in learning more about Social Security disability benefits, we encourage you to view our free guide, Social Security Disability: What You Need to Know or to start a live chat with us at your convenience.

Carl M. Weisbrod
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Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law