If you have applied for disability, you likely have a condition, either physical, mental, or both, that requires you to take prescription medication. Even more likely, you take many medications for many different reasons. When you take these medications, you may have side effects like drowsiness, dry mouth, frequent urination, nausea, etc. Then, you may have to take additional medications just to treat the problems one medication causes, such as stomach irritation or constipation.
Yes – some medications that may help treat your disability may cause side effects and therefore other problems for you. These side effects may make it even harder to try and work. For example, let’s say your doctor prescribes a pain medicine for your nerve pain just to help you walk to the bathroom or move around your house. When you take the medicine as prescribed, you get so tired and groggy that you spend much of your day napping. Or, you have a hard time thinking clearly or concentrating. Obviously you cannot work while on that medication. What if you take high blood pressure medication? Let’s say it makes you need to use the bathroom twice an hour – you would have a problem staying on task at your job if you’re constantly fighting the urge to make several trips to the bathroom.
Why is this important to know if you are filing for Social Security disability? Sometimes the side effects of necessary medications are the key to winning a case. In other words, when your lawyer or the Administrative Law Judge ask about side effects of your medications, they are trying to get a clear picture of how you function during the day when you are taking your medication as prescribed. The combination of your disability plus the side effects of your medications may make it impossible to work, Therefore, it is very important to keep track of what side effects you have from your medications, so write them down and discuss them with your doctor at every visit.
Only seasoned, experienced Social Security disability attorneys understand the less obvious aspects of a Social Security disability claim, which can be instrumental in winning a case. Call the Board Certified attorneys at Morgan & Weisbrod for this specialized kind of help in your disability case.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.