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Endocrine Disorders (Hormonal Imbalances) and Social Security Disability

The Social Security Administration (SSA) uses a document known as the Blue Book to list common disorders and conditions which qualify for Social Security disability benefits and to lay out the parameters under which a person with those conditions can qualify as completely disabled. In June 2011, the SSA added a section on endocrine disorders. Endocrine orders are covered in section 9 of the Blue Book.

Although Section 9 of the Blue Book is devoted to endocrine disorders, the listing does not deal with the qualifications for Social Security disability benefits directly. Rather, endocrine disorders are evaluated based on the other body or mental/emotional functions which they affect. Several examples are listed in the Blue Book, including:

  • Adrenal Gland Disorders, which can be evaluated using the criteria for the musculoskeletal system (Section 1), the cardiovascular system (Section 4), the digestive system (Section 5) or mental disorders (Section 12), depending on which system or function the disorder affects.
  • Diabetes/ Hyperglycemia/ other pancreatic gland disorders - These disorders affect numerous body systems and functions, and may be evaluated under any of them which are appropriate. Common ones are cardiovascular (Section 4), digestive (Section 5), neurological (Section 11), and mental disorders (Section 12).
  • Parathyroid Gland Disorders - These disorders affect the Calcium levels in a variety of body tissues and may be evaluated, as appropriate, under Section 1 (musculoskeletal system), Section 2(special senses and speech), Section 6 (genitourinary impairments), or Section 11(neurological disorders).
  • Thyroid Gland Disorders - These are typically evaluated under the listings for cardiovascular disorders (Section 4), or digestive disorders (Section 5). If the hormonal imbalance is causing strokes, your claim may also be evaluated under Section 11 (neurological conditions). If the imbalance is causing anxiety or mental/emotional disorders, it may also be evaluated under Section 12 (mental disorders).
  • Pituitary Gland Disorders - These may be evaluated under any appropriate section based on the functions or body systems which are affected by the hormonal imbalance.

If your endocrine disorder is shown to meet the criteria in the Section of the Blue Book under which it is evaluated, you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. If it doesn’t, you will need to show that the overall effects of your condition, combined with the effects of any other disabling conditions you have, make it unreasonable for you to be expected to continue working. Generally speaking, this involves showing that your condition makes it impossible for you to perform any work which is available anywhere in the country for which you are qualified.

Other Conditions that qualify under the the Endocrine disorder evaluation: