Complying with your doctor’s advice is a critical step in the Social Security Disability claims process. Carpenters use hammers, saws, and screwdrivers as their tools to build. Social Security Disability Lawyers use medical records for disability as their tools to build cases. These medical records contain information that helps us prove the allegations of disability. Therefore, it is vital that these records be consistent. Consistent in duration and in content. Judges expect a claimant to see doctors on an ongoing, consistent basis. Additionally, the evidence should also demonstrate consistent complaints and limitations. Most successful Social Security claims include not only evidence which documents what you are telling your doctors about how you feel, but they also include consistent objective evidence. Objective evidence includes things like MRIs, x-rays, physical examinations, mental status examinations, or neuropsychological testing.
When discussing your complaints or symptoms, it is important to be accurate with your complaints. Using words like better, the same, or even stable give an impression that you are doing better than what you really are. Too many times judges will take a word like “better” or “stable” and equate those terms with non-disability functioning. If you are still in pain, say so. If you are still depressed, say so. It is not only accurate, but will help with the overall presentation of the case. Please be sure to tell your doctor if you have problems concentrating, problems leaving the home, panic attacks, crying spells, lack of anger control, issues standing, problems walking, problems lifting, or if you need to periodically lay down throughout the day. If you truthfully tell your doctor about these symptoms, they will wind up in your medical record. This will ultimately bolster your testimony and will help you to prove your case to the judge.
Complying with Your Doctor’s Advice
When presenting a case, we look for the medical records for disability to be consistent with your testimony, which is also consistent with the opinions of the medical professional that offer such. When all of these are consistent and in line with each other, it makes it much harder to deny a person’s disability case.
There are times when you may not be able to make it to your medical appointment. If this happens be sure to call them and cancel. This is much better than having your doctors note that you simply didn’t show up. Explain to the person on the phone why you had to cancel. If you are in too much pain, say so. Hopefully they will note that in the record and it will further support your limitations.
Disability claimants can help provide their attorney with the tools they need to build their case. You can do your part to help them out.