Social Security Disability listing 13.14 Cancer of the Lungs
I am not a doctor, I am a lawyer who is trying to make these disability listings a little more accessible for disability claimants.
Let’s look at the listings! So, if you meet the A criteria, B criteria or C criteria, you meet the medical requirements for social security disability and you should get an application started immediately.
The A criteria, non small cell carcinoma inoperable, unresectable, recurrent or metastatic disease. If you meet any of those four, and you have non small cell carcinoma, you meet the a criteria. So let’s take a deeper dive, non small cell carcinoma, this is like 85% of lung cancer, and if it is inoperable or unresectable, these two words are often used interchangeably to say that surgery can’t be performed on the cancer. They have a shade of difference in meaning, one means it’s too risky to perform the surgery and the other is the surgery would kill you. And if you see either of these two words, in your medical record, you meet the criteria. Recurrent, meaning they perform surgery to remove the cancer and then it returned or metastatic disease to or beyond the hilar nodes. Metastatic disease means it has moved to another part of the body. The hilar nodes are where your lungs meet your trachea in your body. So if you have cancer in your lungs, that spread to another part of your lungs, that’s not up to the the hilar nodes, you do not meet this listing, which is unfortunate.
That’s Part A, or you can meet Part B, which is just if you see the word small cell cell carcinoma as your diagnosis and your medical records, then you meet the criteria as simple as that, or can meet C
Criteria C which is carcinoma of the superior sulcus (including Pancoast tumors) it’s usually going to be Pancoast tumors that affect the superior sulcus. Other types of cancer can affect this area, but it’s usually going to be Pancoast. The superior sulcus is an important part of the body that’s listing worthy. It’s where the top of the lungs meet your chest wall. And it’s important because lots of nerves and blood vessels run through this area. Whenever cancer affects it, or cancer treatments are being used in that area, and it greatly affects other body systems this therefore disabling. Carcinoma of the superior sulcus with multimodal anti cancer therapy means that your doctor is using more than one treatment therapy like surgery, radiation, immunotherapy, chemotherapy. Doctors using more than one to treat this would meet the disability listing and that listing is going to run from the start date of the first multimodal therapy. So if your doctor says this person is going to need radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, it would be from whichever of those two starts first, if your doctor talked about you needing multimodal therapy, and none of those therapies have started yet, the SSA is going to reserve judgment on whether or not you are disabled. Then later it says consider under a disability until at least 18 months from the date of diagnosis, meaning you’re going to get disability benefits for at least 18 months. After that they are going to reevaluate and see if you are still disabled under their rules.