Spine Disorders

The majority of claims that are filed for Social Security disability involve disorders of the spine.

Such disorders include:

  • herniated nucleus pulposus (bulging disc)
  • spinal arachnoiditis (inflammation of the membranes surrounding the nerves of the spinal cord)
  • spinal stenosis
  • osteoarthritis
  • degenerative disc disease
  • facet arthritis
  • vertebral fractures
  • spinal dysrhaphism (e.g., spina bifida)
  • diastematomyelia
  • tethered cord syndrome
  • scoliosis, kyphosis and kyphoscoliosis

Some of these conditions must result in compromise of a nerve root or the spinal cord. Such compromise of a nerve root or the spinal cord must cause reduced range of motion of the spine, motor loss, atrophy, muscle weakness, sensory loss and reflex loss. Lumbar spinal stenosis with pseudoclaudication (impingement\inflammation of the nerves originating in the spinal cord) must result in an inability to walk effectively. Scoliosis, kyphosis and kyphoscoliosis can result in impaired ambulation, but may also impair an individual’s ability to breathe or cardiovascular functioning, or there may be disfigurement resulting in significant depression leading to withdrawal or isolation.