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Decline surgery?

nmacnnmac Posts: 112
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:58 AM in Health Insurance Issues
I am thinking about declining a surgery offer because it may not work and could make me worse. I have severe extensive arthritis and documentation to prove it. I am 52. I have tried oh soo many things including surgery, PM, SCS etc. I am still working on light duty but work is getting frustrated with me. The question is: If I decline the not emergency but risky surgery will this hold me back from SSD benefits? The OS states the I have "profound degeneration at multiple levels and severe ossification."
Severe DDD. Klippel Feil Deformity. Cervical Foraminatomy that turned into Lamy. I have tried so many treatments, therapy's and medications.


  • Make sure you ask the Surgeon if the surgery will help any spinal instability or stop any further degeneration or nerve compression.

    I don't know about SSD benefits since I don't live in the States but I was accepted for my country disability because of severe pain and an abnormal EMG/nerve test and can barely walk too far and can't work and the meds make it hard to concentrate and depression from having chronic pain as well as being over 50. I also never had any surgery yet but being unable to work is a big reason for disability. I hope you see your Surgeon and find out if you don't or really do need surgery. Maybe a second opinion Ortho or Neurosurgeon would help you decide. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • i don't think refusing a surgery that may not work and may make your situation worse, should prevent you from being a successful disability candidate, granted i do not live in the States either, i'm not sure how things work there. i think if your doctor can provide documentation of how pain has affected things like mood, work, socialization, activities of daily living, sleep, concentration, effects of medication, ability to dress yourself, limitations in sitting and standing, that would be a good start. i think Disability needs to know how impaired you are ... think of everything you can ... for example, inability to shovel and cut grass, plus difficulty carrying groceries, and all that kind of stuff. i think the more systems that are impaired would seem to make you a clear candidate. but i am not medical doctor so you can just take what i say as nothing but my opinion. i hope this helps. oh yeah, if the surgeon can provide a brief note (perhaps one sentence that he has recommended this intervention and you turned it down for your reasons) would be awesome too. even if the surgeon can't do this your general practitioner/primary care worker could probably do a note ... for example state that you talked to surgeon "X" and turned decided against it because of ... this would mean that it is "documented" and this is a good thing. i'm just a chatty cathty tonight, so i shall shut my mush for now
  • I dont believe refusing surgery in most cases stops a person from ssdi by any means,

    I received ssdi before i ever had the surgery. Only later i decided to have surgery which sadly made me even worse, Good luck
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    Refusing surgery is not something that plays against you in SSDI (or LTD or even CPP from what I've seen). No one can make you have a surgery even if your arm falls off becuase you decline a surgery...no one can "ding" your record for that. It's not uncommon for someone to say "have you considered the options?" and you say "yes, at this time there are none that would work for me". If someone didn't have SSDI yet and were at an ALJ hearing I could see the judge saying "have you considered....." if it's in the record. But he can't use it as part of the reason for a denial.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
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