Sarcoidosis is a chronic inflammatory disease that can affect one or many organs in the body and almost always affects the lungs. Diagnosis Sarcoidosis PaperworkA buildup of immune system cells results in abnormal lumps or nodules known as granulomas—so named because they look likes grains of sand or sugar. Granulomas can grow and cluster, and if there are too many granulomas on an organ, they can negatively impact how the organ functions.  

Although some organs are affected more than others, sarcoidosis usually starts in the lungs. Some people may suffer from this disease for only a few months, and many cases simply disappear or are managed with medication. But chronic forms of sarcoidosis can cause complications that may cause serious damage to organs, fertility problems, lung scarring, skin and eye disease, and problems with the nervous system. And while sarcoidosis isn’t usually debilitating, its symptoms can make life difficult. If you have sarcoidosis, you may be eligible to receive disability from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

Sarcoidosis and Social Security Disability

The list of impairments in the SSA's Blue Book doesn’t include a specific citation for sarcoidosis. So, to have the best chance for receiving Social Security Disability benefits, you may need to:

  • Prove that your sarcoidosis has become debilitating by showing that your symptoms imitate the disability criteria of another impairment listing. You will be evaluated under the disability listing for whatever body organ is affected by the sarcoidosis.
    • For example, if you suffer from sarcoidosis affecting the lungs, you may be evaluated under chronic pulmonary insufficiency, bronchiectasis, or mycobacterial or mycotic lung infections.
  • Prove that you’ve been unable to work for at least 12 months because sarcoidosis has caused total disability. Many people with sarcoidosis can work periodically because this condition often attacks the body inconsistently. However, if the diseases progresses and gainful activity is impossible, this should be stated in the application for benefits.
  • Provide a diagnosis and report about your disability from a medical specialist.

If sarcoidosis has caused complete disability and you can no longer work or perform normal, daily activities, contact us at 402-933-5405 to discuss your situation. We can help determine if you’re eligible for Social Security Disability benefits.


Sean D. Cuddigan
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SSA and VA Disability Attorney in Omaha, Nebraska