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Disability Benefits for Thrombotic Disorders – CVI, DVT, and PE

May 29, 2024

The following article is based on the transcript from this YouTube video, Social Security Disability for Thrombotic Disorders (above), with Principal Attorney Paulette Balin:

When it comes to navigating the complexities of Social Security Disability claims, understanding specific medical conditions is crucial. Today, we’re diving into thrombotic disorders, such as chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), which can significantly impact your life and your ability to work.

Thrombotic Disorders: DVT, PE, and CVI

Thrombotic disorders often present as deep venous thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE). DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein, typically in the legs. While the clot itself is a serious concern, the residual effects can linger long after the clot has dissolved, potentially leading to significant health issues. PE, on the other hand, is a blockage in one of the pulmonary arteries in the lungs, often caused by blood clots that travel from the legs.

A requirement for Disability Benefits is that the condition will prevent you from being able to work a full-time job for a minimum of 12 months. Because of this, it’s much easier to get approved for disability with a diagnosis of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), which evolves after a blood clot does damage to the veins in the legs.

Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI): A More Common Path to Disability Benefits

Although it can be challenging to secure disability benefits based solely on DVT, there is a related condition known as chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) that offers a clearer path to winning a claim. CVI develops when the veins in the legs are damaged by a blood clot, leading to abnormal blood flow, mobility difficulties, chronic pain, and skin ulcers.

Social Security lists CVI under section 4.11 of Cardiovascular conditions, which states the following:

4.11 Chronic venous insufficiency of a lower extremity with incompetency or obstruction of the deep venous system and one of the following:

A. Extensive brawny edema (see 4.00G3) involving at least two-thirds of the leg between the ankle and knee or the distal one-third of the lower extremity between the ankle and hip.


B. Superficial varicosities, stasis dermatitis, and either recurrent ulceration or persistent ulceration that has not healed following at least 3 months of prescribed treatment.

In order to meet Social Security’s medical requirements for chronic venous insufficiency, you have to have a doctor diagnose the CVI and you have to have at least one of the following:

One is brawny edema, which is the swelling in the legs, and it can cause discoloration and tissue thickening; or you can have leg cramping, itching, and burning, together with recurrent wounds, or wounds that do not heal even after three months of treatment.

Winning Your Case: The Role of Functional Limitations

Meeting the exact medical criteria for CVI can be tough, so do not worry if you don’t. Many successful disability claims focus on demonstrating the functional limitations caused by your medical condition(s). This involves showing how your impairment prevents you from maintaining a regular work schedule—eight hours a day, five days a week.

Having a supportive medical team is essential, but experienced disability lawyers are also critical. They can gather comprehensive medical records, obtain detailed medical reports, and present your case effectively. At our firm, we offer a free initial consultation and operate on a contingency fee basis—we only get paid if we win your case. This means we meticulously evaluate each case to ensure we have a strong chance of success.

If you’re dealing with thrombotic disorders or CVI and considering a disability claim, contact us at 866-49-BALIN (866-492-2546) or contact us on balinlaw.com. Although we’re based in Ohio, we have a national practice. The shift to telephone or video hearings mean we can assist you no matter where you are located. Let us handle the legal complexities while you focus on your health and recovery. We’re here to reduce your stress and help you win your case.