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Selected  Medical Impairments
Cancer and Related Disorders  

Cancer can affect virtually every organ and system in the body.   No other disorder is more universally feared among the general population. Despite astounding advances in treatment, it remains a serious and potentially life threatening disease.  

A diagnosis of cancer, in and of itself, is usually not enough to warrant an award of disability benefits. However, many victims of cancer can and do qualify for benefits based on the severity of their disease or the symptoms it produces.

All types of cancer are evaluated essentially the same way for disability purposes. Determining the level of disability requires consideration of (1) the site of the primary tumor or lesion; (2) the histogenesis of the tumor; (3) the extent to which the tumor has involved the primary site or spread to other sites; (4) whether or not the condition has responded to treatment; and (5) the side-effects of such treatment.

Pain, fatigue, impaired body function and other symptoms of cancer can also provide the basis for a finding of disability.   People with cancer, including cancer survivors, frequently experience significant depression or anxiety that may warrant an award of disability benefits. And the recurrence or spread of cancer after treatment is almost always disabling.

Social Security usually does a good job evaluating severe cancer cases. Most people whose cancer is untreatable, or whose cancer has spread following treatment, will be awarded disability benefits without much trouble.  

On the other hand, people whose cancer is not so severe frequently have difficulty establishing their disability claims, no matter how serious their symptoms may be. Many of these people face the prospect of long and difficult lives.  Few would deny that they are as deserving of disability benefits as their less fortunate counterparts, yet theirs are the most commonly encountered cancer cases in any disability law practice. These claims require careful development by a knowledgeable attorney to be successful.

Cancer and Related Disorders
Musculoskeletal Disorders
Special Senses and Speech
Respiratory Disorders
Cardiovascular Disorders
Digestive Disorders
Hemic and Lymphatic Disorders
Hemic and Lymphatic Disorders
Skin Disorders
Endocrine System Disorders
Multiple Body System Disorders
Neurological Disorders
Mental Disorders
Cancer and Related Disorders
Immune System Disorders
Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue
©2015 Frank A. Clark
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