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Keeping in mind that your disability must last 12 months or longer and prevent you from working for you to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, stroke victims often improve after several months. A disability examiner will not make a medical determination until at least 3 months have passed because they will have a more accurate picture of your disability’s restrictions. If they believe that you are showing steady improvement after a stroke, that also might prevent you from collecting disability.

The Social Security listing book lists the following criteria that the examiner must look at.
  • Sensory or motor aphasia that results in ineffective communicating abilities or speech. Severe and constant issues with motor function such as (paralysis, involuntary movement or tremors, or sensory disorders) in two extremities that causes a sustained problem of an individuals gait and posture or dexterity that interfere with walking, standing and/or the use of fingers, hands and arms. In some cases, individuals experience a loss of vision with many people regaining the majority or all their vision. However, if you experience sustained vision problems you may qualify for disability under a different listing.
Mini Stroke (TIA)
A mini-stroke, also known as transient ischemic attack (TIA), is a stroke that lasts for less than 24 hours. A TIA is characterized by a lack of oxygen, usually a blood clot that effects a certain part of the brain concerning a particular body part. It manifests itself through loss of use of that body part such as numbness on one side, dizziness, confusion or difficulty speaking to name a few. TIA’s are a warning sign for the patient to make substantial lifestyle changes such as to stop smoking because they are a precursor to having a stroke with much more severe and longer lasting disabilities. Usually issues caused by TIA’s are temporary, so in and of themselves would not qualify you to receive disability benefits from Social Security.
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