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Can asthma qualify one for SSDI in New Jersey?

Some readers may remember the book "The Lord of the Flies", and how one of the characters therein complains about, and is subsequently bullied regarding, his "asthmar" (sic). While that story is, of course, fictional, asthma is an unfortunate part of life for many Americans, children and adults alike. Ranging from a few acute attacks, to chronic difficulty breathing, the condition can have a severe affect on a person's day-to-day functioning.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) recognizes this fact, and includes asthma in its listing of impairments that may qualify one for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Like most ailments, however, there are certain requirements an applicant must meet in order to show the SSA that the condition warrants an award of benefits.

The medical test results that can be used to make this showing is, according to the 'blue book,' something called 'spirometry.' In this test, a person inhales as deeply as possible and then exhales as hard as possible into a device that measures the force of these actions. According to SSA, for SSA to consider this asthma disabling under the listing, the Forced Exhalation Volume (FEV) must meet the criteria in a table based upon height published by the agency. Further, the condition must also have resulted in at least three hospitalizations over a 12-month period, each of at least 48 hours, and at least 30 days apart.

While this may seem like a heavy burden, those with chronic asthma know it is not necessarily out of the question for people with severe cases. There may be other ways one's condition is disabling as well, which might be shown by other evidence. New Jersey residents with questions regarding filing for social security disability based upon an illness may wish to consider consulting an experienced disability attorney.

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