saxmar - I listed in another posting that I had approx. 400+ pages of medical documentation.... and the state had 3 - haha! 2 of those pages were 1 each from the medical doctor and the pshrink. It is my understanding that they found me "not disabled".... but the process was a joke. The medical doctor did a cursory examination and asked a few questions. The pshrink visit was even more dubious.... he even asked me if I had attempted suicide... I said "yes" - although I only took 5 Xanax and knew I'd "wake up". Both of these doctor exams were less than 10 minutes each.
I think what helped me were the following:
1. I had an excellent work history since the age of 13. And, in the job I was disabled from, I had 2 "excellent" performance reviews.
2. I had mounds of documentation.
3. I was lucky enough to have about
3 LD tests. The 1st I was EIA positive but WB negative. The next I was EIA positive and had a few bands (can't remember which ones). And on the 3rd I was EIA and WB positive... and CDC positive.
4. I had multiple other medical conditions that were documented; chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, depression, anxiety, carpal tunnel, Reynauds, Ehler-Danols (very mild).
5. I was denied 2x and missed the cut-off date for my 2nd appeal. When I re-applied I hired a lawyer. (I had to apply for SSDI, since it was a requirement of my employer's LTD policy).
After the lawyer took over, I was finally approved. I didn't have to go to court, the judge reviewed the paperwork and granted the disability. In her order she cited my previous "excellent" work history, my multiple medical conditions and the State's complete lack of documentation. In so many words the judge said "at some point the State has to prove she is not disabled because the documentation obviously sumbitted was so overwhelming....blah blah blah".
Also, I really think that unless you're (and I don't mean any disrespect) a quadrapalgiac, have lost a limb, or are brain-dead that SSDI automatically denies everyone. I don't think this is the case now, but I understand at one point that even HIV/AIDS patiets had to have a certain level of T-cells (I don't know if that's a low or a high number) before they were considered "disabled". I have a friend with Hep. C who has failed interfuron treatments twice and was STILL denied on his first application.... he's hired my lawyer for his appeal.
I think you just have to keep plugging away at it. Hiring a lawyer took some of the back benefit $$$ away, but it was worth it. They kept up with all of the SSDI requests and reminded me when I needed to do something.... they scheduled my (state) doctor appointments, etc. etc. They just took it out of my hands because I literally could not keep up with it all. So, for me, it was worth the money.
Hope all of this helps.
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Meade
10/01- Igenex and CDC LD positive
Rx's: Wellbutrin 300, Paxil 60, Xanax 5, Acidophilus, Invanz IV, possibly Gammaglobulin, Flagyl, HBOT
Theme song" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgHioCC3yCo&feature=related