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August 31, 2017 CASE STUDY HEMOCHROMATOSIS
Today I am sharing information about a hearing held yesterday before an Administrative Law Judge for a lovely client who has been suffering from a genetic disorder, hemochromatosis.
Hemochromatosis….too much of a good thing.
Usually, iron is an essential nutrient and is in many foods. Iron carries oxygen (in hemoglobin) to all parts of the body. However, these extremely useful and informative web pages tell you that Hemochromatosis is a genetic iron disorder in which the body loads too much iron. In addition to your genes, certain types of anemia or chronic liver disease may require blood transfusions, which can cause excess iron accumulation. The body cannot dispose of excess iron. Excess iron in the blood, if not managed and left untreated, can damage joints, organs such as the heart, liver, pancreas, joints, pituitary gland and more. It can be fatal.
Hemochromatosis increases the risk for:
A person with Hemochromatosis can develop any of these.
So, what happened at the hearing? My hemochromatosis client (let’s call her Janet) is blameless. Janet raised 3 children, worked full time, never drank or smoked. Janet always had a big garden. After work she made a beeline to her garden, and spent time in the sun mulching, weeding and growing flowers and vegetables. She used to crochet. She was healthy, and she was happy. When she hit middle age, without her knowledge, iron overload crept upon her silently with peri menopause and the gradual cessation of menses. Instead of bringing peace and new beginnings, a woman’s “second spring” as they say in Japan, menopause brought gradually increasing joint pain, headaches, fatigue, severe depression, anxiety and even liver disease, or cirrhosis. Her life changed. She lost her job. She lost interest in activities. She became unable to complete housework. She spent most of the day resting. She was treated for severe depression. She began having phlebotomy treatments weekly, draining her of blood filled with excess iron.
To be clear, despite the severity and devastation of a diagnosis of Hemochromatosis, the disease is not a listed impairment in the code of federal regulations. This is because it is a disease that causes impairment by impacting other organs and body systems. It is not usually discovered or diagnosed, unfortunately, and is not considered disabling until it destroys and impacts the function of your liver, pancreas or other organs. It is a global disease and will probably affect multiple organs mildly and/or just one or two body systems severely. This makes it difficult to explain and to prove, and you will often find that treating physicians are reluctant to explicitly identify a cause of fatigue, even if a person has cirrhosis or severe depression. Establishing this is very difficult, but it is also very important to do. In addition, it is critical to focus a judge’s attention on the severity of the organ system affected, such as liver disease, headaches, the depression, evidence of difficulty with persistence, pace and concentration, or the diabetes or other conditions that have developed.
For more information on how to precisely prove disability relating to Hemochromatosis, feel free to contact Attorney Spat at 203.805.8256 or email@example.com.
Attorney Spat has represented clients afflicted with the following conditions, disorders and injuries:
ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder)
Attention deficit disorder
Bipolar disorder or manic depression
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Congestive heart failure
Congestive or chronic heart failure
Coronary artery disease
Degenerative disc disease
Depression, deep depression and other mood disorders
ESRD (end stage renal disease)
GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease)
Loss of hearing
High blood pressure (hypertension)
Broken hip, bad neck, hurt shoulder, twisted ankle, spranged wrist, back problems, and other joint problems
Inflammatory bowel disease
Inner ear problems
Irritable bowel syndrome
Failure of your kidney requiring dialysis and other renal problems
Low back pain
Obsessive compulsive disorder
Osteoarthritis of the knee and/or hip osteochondromatosis
Peripheral field problems, farsighted, nearsighted and other vision loss
Peripheral vascular disease
RSD and reflex sympathetic dystrophy
RSI or repetitive stress injury
Shortness of breath
Hypothyroidism and other thyroid problems
Standing, sitting, jumping and walking problems
Type 1 diabetes or Type 2 diabetes
Vertigo or dizziness
Text/call 203.805.8256 firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Your inital consultation will provide you with important information, guidance, and is free.