This is Something to Take to Heart (Literally)
Cardiovascular impairments can happen at any stage in life: from a heart attack at age 60 or an inherited heart disease at age 4.
Disabilities resulting from problems in the body's cardiovascular system can keep a person from engaging in normal activities, such as working and earning a wage. If you are unable to work because of a cardiovascular condition, you have options for replacing your lost income through disability benefits.
Types of Cardiovascular ConditionsThe Social Security Administration defines a cardiovascular impairment as "any disorder that affects the proper functioning of the heart or circulatory system...[such as the] arteries, veins, capillaries, and the lymphatic drainage." These include:
- Heart disease
- Heart failure
- Ventricular dysfunction
- Pulmonary vascular disease
- Vein or artery disorders (obstructions, ruptures, or aneurysms)
- Peripheral vascular disease (problems in the extremities)
Cardiovascular Conditions as a Disability
Supplemental Security Income and Social Security disability programs recognize cardiovascular conditions as disabilities. Whether or not a disability insurance policy recognizes the condition as a disability depends on the terms of the contract. If your heart or circulatory problems are the result of active duty in the U.S. military, then you may be compensated through the Department of Veteran's Affairs.
Being diagnosed with a cardiovascular disease or condition isn't enough to get benefits. You will need to demonstrate how the health problems affect your or your child's daily routine. If your heart problem or circulatory condition makes it impossible for you to work, you may be able to replace your wages with disability benefits. Children with cardiovascular conditions are also entitled to benefits if they live with a family with limited income or resources.
In your disability claim, include specific descriptions of how your cardiovascular problems affect your ability to:
- Perform basic functions of living (eating, breathing, sleeping, etc)
- Take care of one's self (bathing, grooming, etc)
- Perform mental functions (concentrating, thinking, remembering, etc)
Your chances of being approved for disability benefits after your initial application are much higher if you can show how your life has been affected. If your initial application is denied, you can appeal the decision with the help of an experienced disability lawyer.