Hematological Disorders and Disability

Social Security’s rules recognize a wide variety of medical conditions which, if severe enough, may qualify for disability benefits with the Social Security Administration. Over the next few days I will post the types of conditions that are recognized by the Administration as “Listings of Impairments”.

Today’s category includes Hematological Disorders. These conditions include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Chronic anemia (hematocrit persisting at 30 percent or less due to any cause) With: (A) Requirement of one or more blood transfusions on an average of at least once every 2 months; or (B) Evaluation of the resulting impairment under criteria for the affected body system.

2. Sickle cell disease, with: (A) Documented painful (thrombotic) crises occurring at least three times during the 5 months prior to adjudication; or (B) Requiring extended hospitalization (beyond emergency care) at least three times during the 12 months prior to adjudication; or (C)Chronic, severe anemia with persistence of hematocrit of 26 percent or less.

3. Chronic thrombocytopenia (due to any cause), with platelet counts repeatedly below 40,000/ cubic millimeter. With: (A) At least one spontaneous hemorrhage, requiring transfusion, within 5 months prior to adjudication; or (B) Intracranial bleeding within 12 months prior to adjudication.

4. Hereditary telangiectasia with hemorrhage requiring transfusion at least three times during the 5 months prior to adjudication.

5. Coagulation defects (hemophilia or a similar disorder) with spontaneous hemorrhage requiring transfusion at least three times during the 5 months prior to adjudication.

6. Polycythemia vera (with erythrocytosis, splenomegaly, and leukocytosis or thrombocytosis).

7. Myelofibrosis (myeloproliferative syndrome). With: (A) Chronic anemia; or (B) Documented recurrent systemic bacterial infections occurring at least 3 times during the 5 months prior to adjudication; or (C) Intractable bone pain with radiologic evidence of osteosclerosis.

8. Chronic granulocytopenia (due to any cause). With both A and B:(A) Absolute neutrophil counts repeatedly below 1,000 cells/cubic millimeter; and (B) Documented recurrent systemic bacterial infections occurring at least 3 times during the 5 months prior to adjudication.

9. Aplastic anemias with bone marrow or stem cell transplantation.