If you suffer from a heart condition that interferes with your ability to work, you may qualify for disability benefits. There are a number of heart conditions that are specifically listed by the Social Security Administration as qualifying conditions. These conditions include chronic heart failure, ischemic heart disease, recurrent arrhythmias, hypertensive heart disease, an individual on the waiting list for a heart transplant or a heart transplant recipient, and more. A heart attack by itself will not qualify an individual for Social Security Disability Benefits, but if the heart attack was caused by one of the qualifying conditions of the Social Security Administration, you may qualify for disability benefits.
Like many other conditions qualifying for Social Security Disability, it depends less on what type of condition you are diagnosed with and more on the severity of your condition. If your condition does not qualify you for total disability, you may still qualify for partial disability benefits if you are able to show how your heart problem prevents you from performing the kind of work you have done or are trained to perform.
To determine if you qualify, you will want to examine the conditions the Social Security Administration has determined qualify for disability benefits as found in the Blue Book, Section 4.00 on the Cardiovascular System. Each subsection within Section 4.00 explains what is needed to qualify for disability benefits based on that particular condition. It is beneficial to review this information with your treating physician to determine if you qualify, and your physician may be able to order testing so that you can meet a listing in the Blue Book.
Your medical records and tests must be as thorough as possible to provide evidence that your heart muscle does not function properly and prevents you from performing normal employment duties. Typically, an applicant will need an abnormal stress test, ischemic episodes, abnormal imaging results, or abnormal results of an exercise test.
If you are unable to be approved for Social Security Disability based upon a Blue Book qualification, you may still qualify using a Residual Function Capacity. Your treating physician may complete the RFC form that details your medical condition, treatment plan, medications prescribed, symptoms experienced, side effects of medication, and limitations. The RFC form helps present a clearer picture of the day to day life you experience and your inability to work full time because of your condition rather than just reviewing a medical file.
An attorney at Cook and Associates who specializes in disability benefits can offer a free consultation to walk you through the application process for disability benefits based on a heart condition to give you the best chances of being accepted.