Disability insurance companies don’t always make it easy for policyholders who have osteomyelitis to get the disability benefits they deserve.
Osteomyelitis is caused by bacteria that circulates in your bloodstream and causes an infection in your bones. Germs can enter a bone not only via the bloodstream but also from a nearby infection or from direct contamination from an open wound.
Regardless of the cause, osteomyelitis can result in bone destruction that can be difficult to heal without multiple courses of intravenous antibiotics. Osteomyelitis can result in joint deformity; it can even destroy major weight-bearing joints, including the hip and knee.
Severe bone pain associated with osteomyelitis is one of the most common reasons for filing a disability claim. Those with diabetes may develop osteomyelitis in their feet if they have diabetic foot ulcers.
How Do Disability Carriers View Osteomyelitis Disability Claims?
Carriers are notorious for denying and terminating osteoarthritis claims because they just don’t understand them.
Many claims are denied because the disability insurance company says:
(1) There is no objective basis of the diagnosis,
(2) There is no objective basis for the restrictions and limitations assigned by your physician because of your osteomyelitis,
(3) There is no causal relationship between your osteomyelitis diagnosis and/or restrictions and limitations, and your inability to do your own or any occupation.
Nancy Cavey, who has 35 years experience handling disability cases, overcomes a claims denial by working closely with you and your physician. Nancy had bone surgery herself, so she understands what you are going through!
Nancy Cavey offers a free initial consultation and welcomes the opportunity to speak with you about your disability claim.
What Are The Disabling Symptoms of Osteomyelitis?
Osteomyelitis symptoms can include:
- Fever or chills,
- Pain in the infected area, and
- Swelling, warmth and redness over the infected area.
It’s not uncommon for those with osteomyelitis to have problems sitting, standing and walking. The bone pain can be excruciating, and unrelieved with medication.
How Do I Get The Disability Insurance Benefits I Deserve?
Osteomyelitis can interfere with your daily activities and with your ability to work. If you no longer can work or your doctor has told you to apply for disability benefits, you should take steps before you apply:
- Obtain a copy of your disability policy. See how it defines “disability,” “occupation” and “self-reported conditions.” You’ll need to understand what you have to prove and if there are limitations in your coverage.
You may still have bone pain without an active infection. Some policies consider pain without objective findings to be a subjective condition; benefits are limited to just two years. You need to know any applicable policy limits before you apply for benefits.
- Obtain a copy of your medical records. Review them to see if there is an objective basis for your diagnosis, what your records say about your report of symptoms and your restrictions and limitations.
One of the most commons reasons given for a claims denial is that there is “no objective evidence to support your subjective complaints of pain.’’
Often there just are no objective findings on x-rays, CT scans or MRIs to explain someone’s pain. Carriers make a leap of logic and conclude the policyholder is either exaggerating or faking their pain. Nancy, who has had multiple knee surgeries herself, knows what proof is necessary to meet the policy definition of disability.
- Obtain a copy of your personnel file to see if your osteomyeltic pain has affected your work performance.
- Obtain a copy of your job description. Create your own description of your physical duties with an explanation of how your symptoms impact your ability to do your occupation.
- Provide your doctor with the occupational description. Ask your doctor to prepare a report that explains the objective basis for your diagnosis, the objective basis of your restrictions and limitations, and the objective reasons you can’t perform some or all of the material and substantial duties of your occupation.
- Prepare a pain diary that explains your pain and any side effects of medication. Don’t forget to give examples of how your pain interfered with your ability to do things on a daily basis. Your pain may even give you problems with sleep or concentration.
- Hire Nancy Cavey to help you file your initial application. The application process is confusing and designed so you and your physician make mistakes that can result in a delay or even a denial of your benefits. Ms. Cavey knows how to prepare and file a winning shock and awe disability application that leaves the carrier little reason to question your claim.
- Hire Nancy Cavey to help you appeal a wrongful denial or termination of your disability benefits. Disability carriers are in the business of collecting premiums and not paying disability benefits. They’ll use any reason to deny your osteomyelitis claim. The odds of getting your benefits on appeal are greater when you are represented by an experienced ERISA/private ID policy disability attorney.
Contact Disability Attorney Nancy L. Cavey, Who Can Help You Regardless of Where You Live
Osteomyelitis can make it difficult, if not impossible, to work. You owe it to yourself and your family to get help today! Nancy Cavey can review your policy and your medical records, and explain to you what your policy says and how to get your disability benefits. Call today for a free consultation at 727-894-3188.