Chronic Fatigue Syndrome disability (CFS) is a disorder that causes significant, unexplained fatigue. The fatigue is not caused by overexertion, does not improve with bed rest, and is severe enough to cause considerable decline in your level of activity. The unremitting fatigue that is a hallmark of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome disability can decimate your productivity. If you have CFS and putting in a full day’s work has become a losing battle, this may be the time to claim disability benefits. For advice on your next steps, discuss your options with experienced insurance claims attorney Jonathan M. Feigenbaum, Esquire.
Proving Your Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Disability
As with any disability claim, you must prove your disabling condition to your insurer. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome disability claims are not easy to prove. One reason is that CFS is difficult to diagnose. No laboratory tests can confirm that you definitely have CFS. Rather, doctors will eliminate other causes, such as sleep disorders, medical problems that mimic the same symptoms, and mental health issues before diagnosing you with CFS.
However, certain medical tests may support your CFS diagnosis, although they cannot prove it:
- Abnormal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain;
- Presence of an Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection above certain levels;
- Neurally mediated hypotension (low blood pressure); and/or,
- Other laboratory testing that is consistent with acceptable medical practice (e.g. abnormal stress test or sleep studies).
Medical records from your doctor showing that your condition meets the diagnostic criteria for CFS established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) can also be persuasive:
- Unexplained, persistent fatigue that significantly interferes with your daily activities and your ability to work;
- Which has lasted for six months or more;
- Is not explained by some other medical condition or a side effect of medication or other drugs; and,
- The presence of at least four of these eight signs or symptoms:
- Extreme exhaustion lasting more than 24 hours after physical or mental exercise.
- Excessive tiredness after adequate sleep.
- Loss of memory or concentration.
- Sore throat.
- Headaches of a new type, pattern or severity.
- Enlarged lymph nodes in your neck or armpits.
- Unexplained muscle pain.
- Pain that moves from one joint to another without swelling or redness.
Proving the Severity of Your Limitations
An important aspect of any disability case is proving how much your condition impairs your ability to work. It is critical that your physical, psychological, and cognitive limitations and the severity of those limitations are well-documented.
Consequently, additional testing may strengthen your claim, such as:
- Neuropsychological testing to evaluate cognitive deficiencies.
- A functional capacity evaluation (FCE) to confirm your lack of endurance and physical limitations.
Contact a Insurance Claims Attorney
CFS claims are often denied for lack of evidence. To maximize your chances of success, it’s vital to get help from an experienced lawyer. Insurance claims attorney Jonathan M. Feigenbaum, Esquire, is familiar with the tests that should be part of your CFS claim or appeal. He can refer you for any testing you require. He will also work with your doctor, employer, friends, and family to gather convincing evidence of your disability. Jonathan M. Feigenbaum will use his decades of experience and knowledge to prepare a persuasive disability claim or appeal for you. Call (617) 357-9700 or toll free (866) 396-9722 today to schedule a free evaluation of your case.