Can I Get Disability Benefits If I Have a Heart Murmur?

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Question

Can I get disability benefits if I have a non-innocent heart murmur?

Answer

A heart murmur is an abnormal sound heard during a heartbeat, and is the result of unusual blood flow patterns in the heart. A heart murmur is most often the result of valves that are leaking or narrow. Heart murmurs can be caused by congenital heart defects or by heart valve disease, which in turn can be caused by aging, rheumatic fever, infection, or Marfan syndrome.

A systolic heart murmur is usually not harmful to an individual. However, a systolic heart murmur should be investigated in an effort to prevent a more serious heart condition.

A diastolic heart murmur, by contrast, is always indicative of a more serious condition, such as mitral valve stenosis, aortic regurgitation (blood flowing in the wrong direction), and other serious heart conditions.

If you apply for disability for an abnormal heart murmur, the SSA will evaluate you under the impairment listing your symptoms fall under, either congestive heart failure, arrythmia (abnormal heartbeat), coronary heart disease, or congenital heart disease. However, your symptoms and physical limitations must be quite severe for you to be approved for disability because of a heart murmur.

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