ERISA & Social Security Disability: Southern California Lawyers
Disability Benefits for Lymphoma
Lymphoma is a malignancy that starts in the cells (lymphocytes) of the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system consists of the lymph nodes, spleen, tonsils, thymus, and bone marrow.
Lymphoma can be divided into Hodgkin's Lymphoma and Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
Hodgkin's lymphoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the lymph system.
There are two main types of Hodgkin's lymphoma: classical (most common) and nodular lymphocyte-predominant.
Signs of Hodgkin's lymphoma include swollen and painless lymph nodes in the neck, groin or axilla, fevers, drenching night sweats, severe fatigue, pruritis (itchy skin), and unexplained weight loss.
Tests that examine the lymph system and other parts of the body are used to help detect and diagnose Hodgkin's lymphoma. They often include PET/CT scans of the chest, abdomen, and pelvis as well as a bone marrow biopsy. Sometimes a lymph node biopsy is required.
The treatment and prognosis of Hodgkin's lymphoma depends on the stage of the disease (which indicates how far the disease has spread) and other characteristics that suggest either a favorable or unfavorable prognosis.
Stage I disease is typically mostly confined to one group of lymph nodes.
Stage II disease is involvement of two or more groups of lymph nodes, either above or below the diaphragm.
Stage III disease is involvement of multiple lymph nodes both above and below the diaphragm.
Stage IV disease is involvement of one or more organs, such as the liver or the lung.
Standard treatment includes chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery.
Newer types of treatment being tested in clinical trials include chemotherapy and radiation therapy combined with stem cell transplant, and monoclonal antibody therapy (immunotherapy).
Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL)
Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma grows and spreads at different rates and can be indolent or aggressive. Indolent lymphoma tends to grow and spread slowly. Aggressive lymphoma grows and spreads quickly.
Examples of indolent non-Hodgkin's lymphoma include follicular lymphoma (most common), lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma, marginal zone lymphoma, and others.
Examples of aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma include diffuse large B cell lymphoma, anaplastic large cell lymphoma, extra-nodal NK/T cell lymphoma, mantle cell lymphoma, Burkitt's lymphoma, and others.
The signs of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma are similar to Hodgkin's lymphoma and can include swollen and painless lymph nodes in the neck, groin or axilla, fevers, drenching night sweats, severe fatigue, pruritis (itchy skin), and unexplained weight loss.
Testing and staging of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is similar to Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Treatment modalities include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, and immunotherapy, as for Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Documenting your limitations: How does your condition affect you? Be specific to articulate to your physician details of your physical limitations and how they impact you on a daily basis with regard to your daily living activities, your ability to stand/walk, lift/carry, and even sit for extended periods of time and need for breaks or rest from pain or fatigue. These are important factors and details regarding your functional capacity and important in evaluating whether you can perform your work or any work.