What is Cervical Cancer?
Over 13,000 women in the U.S. were effected with cervical cancer in 2018, and around 41000 lost their lives to it. Cancer of the cervix (the part of the uterus that joins with the vagina) is the second most common cancer affecting women worldwide, and those under the age of 50 are most at risk.
Cervical cancer is caused by the human papillomarvirus (HPV), the most prevalent sexual transmitted disease in the U.S. However, a test known as a Pap smear can detect changes in cervical cells before they become cancerous, and in most cases, the cancer can be prevented.
Women aged 9-26 can also get vaccinated against HPV, which significantly lowers their risk of developing cervical cancer. Women who don’t get regular pap smears are at a much higher risk of developing cervical cancer.
Qualifying for Social Security Disability Benefits with Cervical Cancer
If you’ve been diagnosed with cervical cancer, you could be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. However, a diagnosis of cervical cancer alone isn’t enough to get you approved for benefits.
There are a few things that are essential to know if you’re considering applying for Social Security disability due to cervical cancer. First, you must not currently be working, and must anticipate being off work for at least a year.
Second, your disabling condition must be considered “severe” – meaning that it interferes with your ability to perform basic work-related activities.
Next, the SSA will evaluate whether or not your condition meets the requirements set forth in its “impairment listing” for cervical cancer. To qualify under this impairment listing, your cervical cancer must either extend outside your cervix (to the pelvic wall, vagina, or organs, for example) or be persistent and recurrent despite chemotherapy treatment.
If your cervical cancer doesn’t fall into one of these categories, the SSA will then review the evidence in your disability claim file and vocational factors to determine whether or not there’s any type of job that you would be able to perform on a full-time basis.
Keep in mind that even if the SSA decides that you wouldn’t be able to return to your previous employment due to your cervical cancer, they could still find that there are other types of work that you could do. They will also consider your age and level of education when evaluating what jobs you could do (in general, it’s easier to be found disabled if you’re older or have little education.)
How to Apply for Social Security Disability Benefits with Cervical Cancer
If you have cervical cancer and are applying for benefits, it’s essential to have obtained consistent medical care, and to have the appropriate documentation of your condition, what treatments you’ve tried, and their outcome.
The SSA will also ask for your input (and possibly that of your family or friends) as to how your cancer affects your daily functions, but objective evidence such as medical records is given more weight in the decision-making process. Ideally, your doctor’s notes would include mentions of how your conditions affect you, such as if you suffer from extreme fatigue or nausea due to chemotherapy.
Talk to a Social Security Lawyer Today
If your cervical cancer diagnosis is severe enough that you will be out of work for over 12 months, then you may be able to qualify for Social Security disability benefits. If that is the case, then you may want to seek the counsel of a Social Security Lawyer.
A Social Security lawyer will be able to help you get all of your medical records in order and will give you the best chance of winning your case.