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ssbionicknee
@ssbionicknee

Posts: 60
Joined: Jul 02, 2018

Questions about osteoarthritis.

Posted by @ssbionicknee, Fri, Aug 24 10:19pm

I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in 2009. I have a high tolerance for pain and waited until I was bone on bone and my leg was locking up before going back to the doctor. By the time I went to the doctor a TKR on my right knee was my only option.I have been out of work since April 29 and my surgery was May 14. I was put to the head of the line because my knee was a mess. This is my question about osteoarthritis. I have OA in my left knee as well. In fact it is slowing down the healing in my right knee because it is now hurting from being the weight bearing leg. The plan is to get the 3 injections in my left knee to help my right knee improve, but I know I am close to needing that one replaced as well.The surgeon said it was borderline. I also have osteoarthritis in my neck, spine, and shoulder and I have a herniated disc in my neck. I am 52 and I have a job that is physically demanding. Heavy lifting and on my feet all day. Because of this I am often in pain, which I tend to ignore, but am realizing I need to be listening to my body a little more. I do not think that I can do my active job anymore. I also can't sit at a desk for long periods of time. That hurts my lower back and sciatic nerve. I am at a crossroad here.At what point does it become a disability? I have the left knee that is going quickly downhill followed by my right shoulder. Has anyone had to make this decision and how did you know it was time?

REPLY

I have followed a similar path. My issue was my back initially but am riddled with osteoarthritis in most joints. My path turned out to to retire because I could. The determining factor was I could not preform my job like I wanted to. Exploring disability sounds like a very wise option. I did have a spinal fusion which has been successful and am having surgical interventions on the bone on bone joints. One of the biggest lessons I have learned is to keep moving to the best of my ability. I know I haven’t answered you question but wanted you to know there is a ray of sunshine. Good luck

Hi, @ssbionicknee – I agree with @mschock that it seems prudent to be looking into all your options, like disability, with the osteoarthritis and pain you are experiencing, and your physically demanding job. Listening to your body is really smart, and it sounds like you are doing just that.

I'd like to introduce you to some others who have talked about disability or who have some knowledge in this area, like @hopeful33250 @elizabej @johnbishop @jeancary @kdo0827. Hoping they will have some insights to share on how to know at what point a health issue becomes a disability and how to know when it is time to make the decision to go that direction.

@ssbionicknee – what does your doctor say about whether going on disability might be appropriate at this time?

@ssbionicknee Hi After I fractured my back I had to make this decision after trying to go back to work,nurse,I realized I couldn't so went to Social Security and talked with them For me they checked the numbers and told me Id be better to stay on widows s.s.then go on disability for Id lose 400.00 a month so if you decide go talk to s.s first I of course I stayed on my widows s.s

Hello @ssbionicknee

You were asking about your osteoarthritis and the possibility of applying for disability. If you care to share more, other than the arthritis, do you have other physical or emotional problems that might add to the need for disability?

There are professionals (lawyers and other advocates) who can help you determine whether or not you would qualify for disability. Sometimes, they have their own team of medical and psychological people who can help evaluate and help "plead your cause."

It would be good to talk with your medical doctor(s) and see what they say, then talk with a legal professional who specializes in this type of law and begin the process of putting your case together.

Generally speaking your first attempt to apply for disability benefits are often denied, and the second attempt (especially with professional legal counsel) helps to pull it through. These are of course just general guidelines.

Will you talk with your doctor(s) and get an opinion?

Hello @ssbionicknee
I have bad knees and osteoarthritis but am not eligible for disability because I'm already retired and on social security. I think like others have discussed it would be a good idea to talk with a professional to help you make the best decision for your situation. Here is a website that may be helpful:

Social Security Disability Benefits for Osteoarthritis
https://www.disability-benefits-help.org/disabling-conditions/osteoarthritis-and-social-security-disability

Tips for Receiving Social Security Disability Benefits for Osteoarthritis (a link in the above webpage)
https://www.disability-benefits-help.org/disabling-conditions/osteoarthritis-and-social-security-disability/tips

John

@hopeful33250

Hello @ssbionicknee

You were asking about your osteoarthritis and the possibility of applying for disability. If you care to share more, other than the arthritis, do you have other physical or emotional problems that might add to the need for disability?

There are professionals (lawyers and other advocates) who can help you determine whether or not you would qualify for disability. Sometimes, they have their own team of medical and psychological people who can help evaluate and help "plead your cause."

It would be good to talk with your medical doctor(s) and see what they say, then talk with a legal professional who specializes in this type of law and begin the process of putting your case together.

Generally speaking your first attempt to apply for disability benefits are often denied, and the second attempt (especially with professional legal counsel) helps to pull it through. These are of course just general guidelines.

Will you talk with your doctor(s) and get an opinion?

Jump to this post

I just wanted to tell you my advice on applying for disability. It took me 3 years and 3 tries before I finally was approved. I did it twice on my own. I highly recommend hiring a disability attorney!!! It was well worth it and even then it still took over a year. An experienced disability attorney makes a great difference and they are paid out of your settlement.

@mschock

I have followed a similar path. My issue was my back initially but am riddled with osteoarthritis in most joints. My path turned out to to retire because I could. The determining factor was I could not preform my job like I wanted to. Exploring disability sounds like a very wise option. I did have a spinal fusion which has been successful and am having surgical interventions on the bone on bone joints. One of the biggest lessons I have learned is to keep moving to the best of my ability. I know I haven’t answered you question but wanted you to know there is a ray of sunshine. Good luck

Jump to this post

Actually, that was helpful. I do move around quite a bit, but can only stand for so long before needing a break. Today has been a rough day. I told a few friends that my knee is telling me it is going to snow, even though it is in the high 80's. 🙂

@lisalucier

Hi, @ssbionicknee – I agree with @mschock that it seems prudent to be looking into all your options, like disability, with the osteoarthritis and pain you are experiencing, and your physically demanding job. Listening to your body is really smart, and it sounds like you are doing just that.

I'd like to introduce you to some others who have talked about disability or who have some knowledge in this area, like @hopeful33250 @elizabej @johnbishop @jeancary @kdo0827. Hoping they will have some insights to share on how to know at what point a health issue becomes a disability and how to know when it is time to make the decision to go that direction.

@ssbionicknee – what does your doctor say about whether going on disability might be appropriate at this time?

Jump to this post

At my appointment he took a great deal of time looking at the x-rays and manipulating both knees. At one point he looked at me and asked if I wanted to go back to work (this was after deciding that I needed 6 more weeks off to heal) I did not think about what he meant by that at the time. I believe he may have been gently hinting that it might not be a good idea. Right now I am waiting for approval for the injections. This weekend has been rough. Some days it is the right knee and some days it is the left knee that hurts. The x-ray of my left knee is quite interesting. My kneecap is over to one side and no longer in the middle. I am going to call tomorrow and see what my doctor thinks.

@hopeful33250

Hello @ssbionicknee

You were asking about your osteoarthritis and the possibility of applying for disability. If you care to share more, other than the arthritis, do you have other physical or emotional problems that might add to the need for disability?

There are professionals (lawyers and other advocates) who can help you determine whether or not you would qualify for disability. Sometimes, they have their own team of medical and psychological people who can help evaluate and help "plead your cause."

It would be good to talk with your medical doctor(s) and see what they say, then talk with a legal professional who specializes in this type of law and begin the process of putting your case together.

Generally speaking your first attempt to apply for disability benefits are often denied, and the second attempt (especially with professional legal counsel) helps to pull it through. These are of course just general guidelines.

Will you talk with your doctor(s) and get an opinion?

Jump to this post

My orthopedic records are all in one place because I have been going to them for years. I looked back at the records and besides the osteoarthritis, I saw that I had some degenerate disc disease in my spine and I believe my neck. I have a small tear in my rotator cuff from a fall and have fallen again since. I have Restless leg syndrome and ADHD which I take medication for, but still need to keep moving. I am being treated for anxiety and depression, which are under control. My feet overpronate and my sciatic nerve flares up along with my lower back. It has been worse lately. I am also still walking with a limp, which the doctor said is because my other knee is so bad. I was diagnosed with tendonitis in my right elbow as well. That is all I can remember at the moment. I am going to message the doctor and have been looking at the other comments. I have had 2 friends tell me to get a lawyer and I saw several comments advising that I do that as well. I believe that is the way I will go depending on what the doctor says. I appreciate the support and information from everyone.

I am 52 and retiring is not an option for me. I agree with you about talking to a professional. Thank you for the links. I am going to look them up and try to talk to my doctor tomorrow. I need to get the ball rolling on this.

@ssbionicknee I looked at your notes. "besides the osteoarthritis, … degenerate disc disease in my spine and I believe my neck. I have a small tear in my rotator cuff from a fall and have fallen again since. I have Restless leg syndrome and ADHD which I take medication for, but still need to keep moving. I am being treated for anxiety and depression, …. My feet overpronate and my sciatic nerve flares up along with my lower back. It has been worse lately. I am also still walking with a limp, which the doctor said is because my other knee is so bad. I was diagnosed with tendonitis in my right elbowl" Now, I am not going to try to dX you, but you do have a package of symptoms and signs of various Amyloidosis Light Chain Diseases. I would suggest you have your doctor order a sFLC(c)Blandings Site assay (SERUM FreeLiteChain) of the misfolded protein in you SERUM (not plasma). And watch Dr. Martha Grogan's Mayo video on diagnosing Amyloidosis. Have your Dr order the tests she names. Or, if you prefer I have listed her choices in my own medical dossier, https://bit.Ly/1w7j4j8 in "Amyloid and Old Karl" There are about 8 or so. And if you wish, have your doc order, from Ambry Genetics, of Aliso Viejo, CA, 92656, Tel. 866-262-7943, or fax: 949-900-5501, or web site ambrygen.com , the hATTR Compass kit. It is free. Now please not. I am not selling anything. I just see that, in your note, first, you seem desperate; and second, that you have some of the stuff I have. It is time to find out what it is. Let us know how you do.

@hopeful33250

Hello @ssbionicknee

You were asking about your osteoarthritis and the possibility of applying for disability. If you care to share more, other than the arthritis, do you have other physical or emotional problems that might add to the need for disability?

There are professionals (lawyers and other advocates) who can help you determine whether or not you would qualify for disability. Sometimes, they have their own team of medical and psychological people who can help evaluate and help "plead your cause."

It would be good to talk with your medical doctor(s) and see what they say, then talk with a legal professional who specializes in this type of law and begin the process of putting your case together.

Generally speaking your first attempt to apply for disability benefits are often denied, and the second attempt (especially with professional legal counsel) helps to pull it through. These are of course just general guidelines.

Will you talk with your doctor(s) and get an opinion?

Jump to this post

@ssbionicknee

I am glad to hear that everyone's posts have helped you with your thoughts of applying for disability benefits.

If you are comfortable doing so, as you investigate the matter of applying for disability benefits will you update us now and then regarding your progress?

@hopeful33250

Hello @ssbionicknee

You were asking about your osteoarthritis and the possibility of applying for disability. If you care to share more, other than the arthritis, do you have other physical or emotional problems that might add to the need for disability?

There are professionals (lawyers and other advocates) who can help you determine whether or not you would qualify for disability. Sometimes, they have their own team of medical and psychological people who can help evaluate and help "plead your cause."

It would be good to talk with your medical doctor(s) and see what they say, then talk with a legal professional who specializes in this type of law and begin the process of putting your case together.

Generally speaking your first attempt to apply for disability benefits are often denied, and the second attempt (especially with professional legal counsel) helps to pull it through. These are of course just general guidelines.

Will you talk with your doctor(s) and get an opinion?

Jump to this post

I sure will.

@hopeful33250

@ssbionicknee

I am glad to hear that everyone's posts have helped you with your thoughts of applying for disability benefits.

If you are comfortable doing so, as you investigate the matter of applying for disability benefits will you update us now and then regarding your progress?

Jump to this post

I haven't gotten to far yet. I had an insurance nightmare. I received a letter on August 17 saying that my coverage had been terminated and they had backdated it to May 1, which was before the surgery. So I have spent the last week spending 2-3 hours on the phone being transferred all over the place. I finally had to go ahead and pay COBRA payments so I could get mu insurance reinstated. The company should have covered that since I was out on FMLA. I am still dealing with them. As a result of all this I have had to put the shots on hold, which has caused my old knee to get worse. I have been trying to figure out where to get an attorney and if I had a case and then it hit me that my doctor would be the best source of information. So I have a call in to him. My new knee has been really sore along with my lower back and sciatic nerve. I am wondering if I need to go back to using my cane since the old knee is not able to to be the weight bearing leg. Will be asking the doctor and PT those questions.

@ssbionicknee
Good Morning!
First, I'd like to tell you how much I like your screen name! I say that by the time I finish fixing everything within my body, I'll be called the 'bionic woman.' lol

You ask a very good question. This is a question I can answer based on my own experience. I am not an expert by any means and the advice other members have given you is very good.

I went out (from work) on SSI Disability. It took me only 1 try to get it.
Although there are guidelines, and someone did post the link, I BELIEVE that it is still up to the individual who reads your request.
AGAIN, that is MY OPINION.
I was very fortunate that the person who worked with me on my application was VERY, VERY helpful. If he didn't work with me, who knows if I would have gotten benefits.
When I started the process, I had a couple of reasons for applying: 1. lack of mobility due to OA and the pain associated with it; 2. I had Shingles. It was VERY mild but the Shingles VIRUS only, went into my eyes causing a 6th Nerve Palsy. I had residual affects and permanent damage. This made reading very difficult. I was an elementary school principal. If I couldn't walk, needed pain meds and couldn't read, it was difficult (impossible) to do my job. To ME, I thought this would be enough to collect SSI Disability.
The person who helped me with my application said I should put down EVERYTHING that was wrong with me. The more, the better. However, I needed to be able to document each item. It was not difficult. I had a bunch of doctor reports, tests and meds I was taking for a variety of ailments.
Thankfully, I was able to retire and get SSI. I did lose a part of my pension because I retired early, but that was OK. If I didn't get the SSI, I would not have been able to retire.
So, to make a long story even longer, here are my SUGGESTIONS based on MY OWN EXPERIENCE:
1. List EVERYTHING that is wrong with you. Don't worry about sounding like a hypochondriac (spelling?).
2. List EVERY medicine you take for all your ailments.
3. Bring copies of all tests and test reports for your ailments.
4. Let your doctor know what you are doing so he/she can give you any supporting documents.
I realize that this might be extreme and that some of your ailments have NOTHING to do with your quest, but you must remember that your final goal is to receive Disability.
Good luck and I hope this helps!
Ronnie (GINSBERGr)

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