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Cancer is a leading cause of loss of the ability to work and therefore ranks highly as a reason for Social Security application. There are certain types of cancers such as thyroid, esophageal, liver and pancreatic which are really aggressive and limiting. If these are presented as the basis for an application for Social Security, the rate of approval is significantly high. Other types of cancers, though they may not be as aggressive, may have progressed to limiting levels and disability will also be granted.
The process of qualification for Social Security disability benefits due to cancer is rather straightforward in most cases but if the case has not reached to disability approval levels, convincing evidence must be provided to the Social Security Administration (SSA). Evidence must indicate the severity of cancer, SSA’s disability listing for the type of cancer, limiting symptoms of cancer or treatment limitations suffered by the applicant. If the type of cancer suffered by an applicant is impossible to treat by an operation, has a possibility to advance with surgery, has recurred after treatment or has spread to other parts of the body, then an applicant is eligible for disability benefits.
Treatment regimens for cancer are administered according to the nature and extent of spread. The first line of action for removal of cancerous tumors is surgical removal but under the SSA’s impairment listings for most types of cancers, an applicant’s approval for disability benefits will be approved if the procedure for removing a tumor was unable to fully remove it.
In the event of a surgical procedure to remove cancerous tissue, other organs or blood vessels might have been severed leading to chronic incapacitation. Even if an applicant is declared cancer free after such an operation, the resultant incapacitation will be reviewed under the cardiovascular or musculoskeletal listings to approve the social disability application.
According to the SSA’s cancer listings, cancer that began in one part of the body but has spread to affect other areas as well is called metastases beyond the regional lymph nodes and refers to the aggression of the condition. Applicants with such a condition qualify for automatic approval even if the original cancer site was treated and cleared.
Depending on the nature, location and extent of cancer, the treatment approach used might be so severe that an applicant is unable to work at a regular job. The side effects of the treatment might be such that there is no way an individual can go to work for a period of at least one year. The basic requirement for approval of disability is that cancer must have been active for a period of not less than a year.