An individual who undergoes kidney transplantation is considered to be under a disability for 12 months following surgery. Thereafter, the individual is evaluated on kidney function.
Social Security explores the ability of an individual to perform work he or she has done in the past despite his organ transplant disability. If SSA finds that a person can do his past work, benefits are denied. If the person cannot, then SSA proceeds to the final step.
At this stage, SSA looks at education, work experience and physical/mental condition to determine what other work, if any, the person can perform. To determine disability, SSA enlists vocational rules, which vary according to age.
If a person is:
- Under age 50 and, as a result of the symptoms or need of a kidney transplant is unable to perform what SSA calls sedentary work, then SSA will reach a determination of disabled. Sedentary work requires the ability to lift a maximum of 10 pounds at a time, sit six hours and occasionally walk and stand two hours per eight-hour day
- Age 50 or older and, due to his or her kidney transplant, is limited to performing sedentary work but has no work-related skills that allow him to do so, SSA will reach a determination of disabled
- Over age 60 and, due to his or her kidney transplant, unable to perform any of the jobs he or she performed in the last 15 years, SSA will likely reach a determination of disabled
- Any age and, because of kidney transplants, has a psychological impairment that prevents even simple, unskilled work, SSA will reach a determination of disabled
Social Security considers under a disability for 12 months following surgery, or
- Persistent elevation of serum creatinine to 4 mg. per deciliter (100 ml.) or greater or reduction of creatinine clearance to 20 ml. per minute (29 liters/24 hours) or less, over at least 3 months, with one of the following:
- Renal osteodystrophy manifested by severe bone pain and appropriate radiographic abnormalities (e.g., osteitis fibrosa, marked osteoporosis, pathologic fractures); or
- A clinical episode of pericarditis; or
- Persistent motor or sensory neuropathy; or
- Intractable pruritus; or
- Persistent fluid overload syndrome resulting in diastolic hypertension (110 mm. or above) or signs of vascular congestion; or
- Persistent anorexia with recent weight loss with persistent weight below the level listed in the charts at the bottom of this article ; or
- Persistent hematocrits of 30 percent or less
- Nephrotic Syndrome, with significant anasarca, persistent for at least 3 months despite prescribed therapy will be considered disabling if it meets one of the following criteria.
- Serum albumin of 3.0 gm. per deciliter (100 ml.) or less and proteinuria of 3.5 gm. per 24 hours or greater; or
- Proteinuria of 10.0 gm. per 24 hours or greater