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Patau Syndrome and Social Security Disability

In 2010 the Social Security Administration received more than three million applications for Social Security Disability benefits. More than two-thirds of these applications were denied during the initial stage of the application process. While many of these claims were filed by disabled workers who were no longer able to maintain employment due to their disabling conditions, some were filed by parents for children who were diagnosed with severely debilitating diseases.

When a child is diagnosed with a serious and life-threatening illness, the financial ramifications can be overwhelming. In some cases, Social Security Disability benefits can help offset some of the financial burden caused by the child's illness. Fortunately, many of the parents who are filing claims for Social Security Disability benefits for a disabled child can avoid the complications and stress of the standard Social Security Disability application process.

In 2008 the Social Security Administration introduced the Compassionate Allowances program. Under the Compassionate Allowances guidelines, some applicants can obtain disability benefits in a matter of weeks instead of having to wait months or even years for a disability approval. There are 88 conditions that qualify an applicant for claim processing under these guidelines. Patau syndrome is among them.

If your child has been diagnosed with Patau syndrome, the following information will help you understand the disability claim process and what you can do to increase your chances of receiving a quick approval of your child's disability benefits under the SSA's Compassionate Allowances guidelines.

Patau Syndrome (Trisomy 13) - Condition and Symptoms

Patau syndrome, also known as Trisomy 13, is a rare genetic disorder that results in a baby being born with three copies of the genetic material contained in the thirteenth chromosome. The condition affects approximately one in every 10,000 newborns. In healthy babies, there are only two copies of this genetic material. For babies who are born with Trisomy 13, the extra material affects the development of the afflicted child.

There are three different types of Trisomy 13 including Trisomy 13 cases where all of the cells contain extra genetic material, Trisomy 13 mosiacism where some of the cells contain an extra chromosome and partial trisomy where there is only a part of an extra chromosome in the cells. The severity of the condition will depend on which type of Trisomy 13 the child is afflicted with.

Unlike many of the disabling conditions that affect newborns, Patau syndrome is not passed down from the parents to the child. Instead, this condition occurs as a result of a defect in the egg or the sperm that formed the fetus. The symptoms of Patau syndrome can vary depending on the severity of the condition and whether all or only some of the cells have been affected. Common symptoms of Trisomy 13 include cleft lip, cleft palate, clenched hands, close-set eyes, impaired muscle tone, extra fingers or toes, hernia, low-set ears, impaired mental development, missing skin, seizure, skeletal deformities, small eyes, a small head, small lower jaw and undescended testicles.

There is no standard course of treatment for babies who are born with Patau syndrome. Instead, treatment is specialized and focused on the symptoms of each individual patient. It is not uncommon for children who are born with the condition to need surgery, physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and other supportive treatment measures.

The life expectancy of a child who is born with Patau syndrome will vary depending on the particular symptoms and the severity of the condition. In many cases, a child who is born with Patau syndrome will not survive beyond the first month of life.

Filing for Social Security Disability with Patau Syndrome (Trisomy 13)

Having a child who has been diagnosed with Patau syndrome can be an emotionally devastating experience. Many parents wonder how they will meet the needs of the child while maintaining the financial needs of the family. In many cases, Social Security Disability benefits can help.

Fortunately, Patau syndrome is one of the 88 conditions that qualify a disability applicant for processing under the SSA's Compassionate Allowances guidelines. This means that your child can be approved for disability benefits in a matter of weeks instead of having to wait months for the standard disability claim process to complete.

When filing a Social Security Disability claim based on a diagnosis of Patau syndrome, make sure that you thoroughly answer all of the questions presented to you and complete the application properly. Improperly prepared disability claims are one of the leading reasons for a denial of disability benefits. You should also be sure to include a complete copy of your child's medical records with your disability claim including test results and written statements from treating physicians. These documents will be needed for a timely approval of your child's Social Security Disability benefits. Make to follow up on the status of your claim regularly and file an appeal if necessary.

Your Patau Syndrome (Trisomy 13) Social Security Disability Case

Many of the parents who file Social Security Disability claims for children who have been diagnosed with a condition which falls under the SSA’s Compassionate Allowance listings assume that their child's application will be automatically approved by the Social Security Administration. This is not necessarily the case. You will still need to ensure that your application is filled out properly and that sufficient medical evidence is provided in order to obtain disability benefits for your child's condition.

If you would like to increase your chances of obtaining an expedited approval of your child's disability claim, you should consider retaining the services of a qualified disability lawyer or advocate. These professionals can help you in the preparation of your Social Security Disability claim and will ensure that your claim is presented in the best light possible to the Social Security Administration.