Can You Qualify for Disability for Respiratory Issues in Arkansas?

Many people applying for Social Security Disability benefits suffer from respiratory problems that make it impossible to perform the required duties of their employment. If you have a respiratory issue, you could be eligible for disability benefits. However, you will need to provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) with objective medical evidence and documentation that shows your condition impairs your ability to work.

Even if you have a qualifying medical condition, obtaining an approval from the SSA is difficult. By working with one of our Fayetteville, AR Social Security Disability lawyers, you increase your chances of getting the benefits you deserve. Our office has handled initial disability applications and appeals for decades.

Applicants who suffer from respiratory problems are shocked when their disability benefits are denied. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon. More than half of all initial claims are denied by the SSA. Some are denied because of a mistake on the application, while others lack enough supporting medical evidence. If you are applying for benefits with a respiratory condition or need to appeal a denial, contact our law offices at (479) 316-0438.

Common Types of Respiratory Conditions That Qualify for Disability in Arkansas

Some respiratory conditions have specific Social Security Administration guidelines and are usually considered for disability benefits. Our Arkansas Social Security benefits attorneys will work closely with you and your doctors to ensure the proper medical documentation is submitted to the SSA.


Many people in Arkansas have asthma. If you want to qualify for disability benefits for your asthma, you must provide medical documentation proving that it severely impacts your ability to perform ordinary activities, including those tasks associated with your job. To be considered a disability, you must experience at least one asthma attack every other month that requires treatment from your doctor. The SSA will weigh an asthma attack that requires hospitalization as two attacks.


Emphysema is a respiratory condition characterized by air-filled spaces or cavities in the lungs. People who suffer from emphysema will typically experience chronic coughing and difficulty breathing. In many cases, emphysema is associated with cigarette and tobacco use. In addition to demonstrating that your emphysema is adversely affecting your ability to work, you will have to demonstrate to the Social Security Administration that you are following your doctor’s prescribed medical treatment to control or mitigate the effects of your condition. In nearly every case, this includes giving up smoking.

Cystic Fibrosis

Cystic fibrosis is a debilitating, degenerative, and chronic condition. While medical advances have increased the lifespan of an individual suffering from this disease, the treatments often interfere with an individual’s ability to work. Therefore, this is a respiratory condition where both the symptoms and treatments impact a person’s capacity to earn a living.

Stroke-Related Breathing Problems

Difficulty breathing and other respiratory problems are often complications of a stroke. If your respiratory issues are severe, you could qualify for disability benefits. One of the key factors the SSA considers is lung capacity tests. It is vital to have records of these diagnostic tests and documentation of any instance when shortness of breath negatively impacted your ability to perform an ordinary task. Our Springdale disability attorneys will assist you in gathering the necessary medical evidence.

Medical Evidence to Support Your Respiratory Disability Claim in Arkansas

No matter what your medical condition is, if you are applying for Social Security benefits, you need to provide medical evidence of your impairment for the SSA to determine if you have a qualifying impairment.

The SSA will evaluate your claim using the “Blue Book,” or the Disability Evaluation Under Social Security. This publication contains a comprehensive listing of the medical conditions and impairments that the SSA uses as a baseline to make its determination. The medical evidence you provide will be compared with the listed requirements in the Blue Book to determine if you meet the proper standards to be considered disabled. Our team of experienced Arkansas disability lawyers also use the SSA listing as a guide.

The Blue Book lists respiratory problems in Section 3.00. This list includes conditions such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, bronchiectasis, chronic pulmonary hypertension, and others.

When applying for benefits, your application should include a medical source statement from your treating physician. This statement should detail your diagnosis, including supporting diagnostic test results, hospitalization records, and any other prescribed treatment. Your doctor should indicate what medications you are taking, along with any potential side effects. It is possible that the side effects of your treatment could also negatively impact your ability to work.

Your doctor’s statement must explain more than just your medical treatment and symptoms. Proving that you have been diagnosed with a respiratory problem is just part of the equation. The documentation and evidence you provide to the SSA must explain how your condition affects your ability to perform ordinary tasks. For example, it should clearly explain that your breathing difficulties make it impossible to walk short distances. If you want to be approved for benefits, you need to link your respiratory condition and symptoms to your inability to work. If you need help, our Rogers disability attorneys will work with your doctor.

Call Our Arkansas Social Security Disability Attorneys for a Free Consultation

If your respiratory condition makes it impossible to work, you could be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. However, even if your condition is severe, it does not guarantee that your application will be approved. Our experienced Bentonville Social Security Disability lawyers could help you avoid many common mistakes that hamper the application process. Our team of attorneys is also available to assist you in appealing a denial. Call (479) 316-0438 to schedule a confidential consultation.