For those who have never suffered from a migraine headache, it may be difficult to understand how truly debilitating these headaches can be. Victims often are unable to work or perform simple daily tasks during an attack. There’s no cure for chronic migraines and no foolproof way to prevent them. So, for frequent sufferers, this can mean significant financial instability caused by time missed from work. These migraine sufferers may seek chronic migraine disability benefits through Social Security as a way to offset some of those losses.

In order to submit a successful disability claim involving chronic migraines—also called primary headache disorder—the Social Security Administration (SSA) needs evidence that you were diagnosed with this condition and that you've undergone regular treatment. There are no definitive tests to diagnose migraines; however, the diagnosis can be made based on the patient’s reported symptoms, a history of the condition, and additional tests performed to rule out other causes.

Medical Evidence Considered by the SSA for a Benefits Claim

Social Security benefits for chronic migraine disabilityThe SSA has to establish a primary headache disorder as a medically-determinable impairment (MDI). An MDI is defined by the SSA as “an impairment that results from anatomical, physiological, or psychological abnormalities that can be shown by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory diagnostic techniques.”

Thus, the SSA won’t approve disability benefits based on a doctor's statement about your symptoms alone.

Medical evidence that proves to the SSA that you have primary headache disorder should include:

  • Medical records that show your doctor has diagnosed you with primary headache disorder
  • Proof that your doctor or someone close to you has observed the headache event
  • Results of any additional tests performed such as an MRI or a CT scan that rule out other conditions that could be causing your severe, recurring headaches
  • Notes from your doctor that cite the frequency and severity of your migraines
  • Medical records from visits to the emergency room or hospitalizations for migraine headache treatment
  • Statements from family members or friends with who you spend a great deal of time
  • Records of the various treatments you’ve tried to treat your chronic migraines such as pain medications, anti-nausea medications, or preventative medications and the responses you’ve had to them
  • Proof that you're complying with your doctor’s recommended treatments

In addition to this medical evidence, your attorneys may ask your doctor to complete a report or questionnaire about your condition.

Contact Cuddigan Law for Chronic Migraine Disability Benefits in Nebraska

If you're looking to apply for chronic migraine disability in Nebraska, contact Cuddigan Law by filling out the form on our website or by calling our Omaha or Lincoln office to speak with an intake specialist for free. We also encourage you to read our free book, 5 Deadly Mistakes That Can Destroy Your Disability Case, to learn more about the disability application process.

Timothy J. Cuddigan
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Omaha Social Security and Veterans Disability Lawyer With Over 40 Years Experience
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