Proving EDS as a Disability
Your EDS disability claim needs to show that your condition limits your ability to perform at your job. Often, people with EDS need to avoid lifting, pulling, and pushing. Repeated bending or stretching actions, or staying in the same position over a long period can all negatively affect those with EDS. This makes both physical and sedentary jobs potentially problematic for those with EDS. Joint pain, hyper flexibility, and fatigue are all common symptoms of EDS that can limit your ability to perform at work. All symptoms of your EDS should be properly documented by your doctors to help build your case. Discuss any symptoms you experience as a result of your EDS with your primary care physician, as well as any specialists you see because of your condition.
Because EDS is a less common condition, your insurance company may not be as familiar with it. Because of this, they may not fully understand the effect it can have on your life. So the documentation of your symptoms must be thorough.
Providing Medical Evidence of Your Ehlers-Danlos Disability
For your insurance company to regard your condition as a disability, you need to provide solid evidence. In most cases, forms of Objective Medical Evidence help build your case. Objective medical evidence refers to medical documentation that establishes your diagnosis, symptoms, and physical/mental limits. Because EDS is a genetic disease, objective evidence of your diagnosis can be achieved through a tissue biopsy. Additionally, a family history of EDS can support the diagnosis.
One example of objective medical evidence that could be helpful to your case is a Functional Capacity Evaluation. An FCE is a test of your physical capacity to test how much physical activity you can perform. We generally recommend a 2-day FCE, as it allows for a more thorough investigation into how fatigue plays a role in your disability.
Your medical records and treatment notes from your doctor can also be vital in building your disability claim. All of your medical records, including any scans or lab tests, should be submitted as evidence to the insurance company. Treatment notes from your doctor(s) can be important as well, especially if they have been thorough in documenting your symptoms. Overall, any reports, questionnaires, or other detailed paperwork from your doctor regarding your diagnosis or symptoms can be helpful as evidence.
Vocational Evidence of Your Disability
Vocational evidence is documented evidence of how your physical/cognitive limitations affect your occupational tasks. Generally, this evidence comes from your current and/or previous employers. Vocational evidence can include:
- Your Education
- Training qualifications
- History of employment
- Job description
- Any accident reports as a result of your EDS-related limitations
- Job evaluations
A vocational evaluation of your skills and your ability to perform your job can be important to developing your case further.