Physical Exams for Social Security Disability: What You Need to Know

by Clauson on July 21, 2017

As you are going through the process of applying for disability, you will be required to submit a lot of documentation that speaks to your overall physical state. Since most disability cases are based on physical injuries or other conditions, the SSA is going to want to have a fairly complete and accurate idea of what you are and are not capable of. In fact, without this information, your claim will most likely be denied right away. Because of this, it’s important to submit all of the information you can. However, in many cases, you will still be required to submit to a physical exam if you want to win your social security disability claim.

Physical Exams for Social Security Disability

Why Do I Need to Have a Physical Exam?
The SSA actually requires physical examination more often than not, so if you are told to get one, it’s important not to worry — it doesn’t mean they don’t believe you. Often, the physical documentation is simply inadequate to determine the extent of your injury or disability. Even if your documentation is thorough, it’s not unusual for the SSA to ask for an exam. So, if this happens, the important thing it to go ahead and do it.

What Happens in a Physical Exam?
A physical exam for social security disability really isn’t that different from other physical exams. The doctor will check all the usual — blood pressure, heart rate, weight, etc. However, the examiner will also take the time to look at the affected part of the body, if possible. So, if your claim rests on the fact that your back is injured, for example, you can expect the physician to spend some time looking at your back and assessing it. In some instances, depending on the case, other tests such as X-rays or blood work might take place. But, for the most part, it’s a non-invasive exam designed to assess your overall physical condition.

What Happens After?
After the physical exam, the doctor will record his or her findings, including results from tests and other diagnostic tools, and send them to the SSA. In addition, the doctor will include a personal assessment of your physical abilities — especially as to how they relate to your disability claim — and a prognosis of what you can expect in the future.

If you are filing a disability claim, have been asked to undergo a physical exam for social security disability, or you simply have questions about winning a disability claim, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


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