IBS_Sucks, I am going to be working on some future information on disability soon, with someone who knows quite a bit about
Did you read the new "Women With IBS Show Changes In Their Brains" thread?
This is starting to open the door to real physical strutural changes they can "see." There are some embedded in gut as well but are too hard to get too and are not completely understood.
Some people have gotten it. Almost everyone is denied the first time. Some people might also need a lawyer. Military people can get it now as far as I understand it.
Is IBS a Disability?
Depending on the circumstances it is up to each employer, insurer, or governing authority to determine individual disability.
The U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) defines disability as the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months. (SSA Pub. No. 64-039, May 2002) However, the SSA does not recognize irritable bowel syndrome on its Listing of Impairments -- Adults, Section 5, Digestive System.
To our knowledge, the only regulation that specifically recognizes IBS as a disability is the Veterans Affairs, Veterans Education and Benefits Expansion Act of 2001, Public Law 107-103 signed by President Bush on December 27, 2001. Section 202 -- Payment of Compensation for Persian Gulf War Veterans with Certain Chronic Disabilities -- includes this provision: (2) For purposes of this subsection, the term "qualifying chronic disability" means a chronic disability resulting from any of the following (or any combination of any of the following): (B) A medically unexplained chronic multi-symptom illness (such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and irritable bowel syndrome) that is defined by a cluster of signs or symptoms. The law authorizes funding to expand and increase educational, housing, burial and disability benefits for chronic multi-symptom illnesses to the list of service-connected conditions for Gulf War veterans. "