Leg, Knee & Ankle Disorders
Lower Extremities – Disorders of the Hips, Legs, Knees Ankles or Feet
Your lower extremities include all areas between your hips and toes. Impairments of your lower extremities can occur for many reason including orthopedic injuries to the bones, vascular disorders relating to the flow of blood, or diseases attacking the nervous system.
Orthopedic disorders can include chronic joint pain caused by arthritis, fracture of a bone that failed to heal properly. Orthopedic disorders can often result in the need for multiple surgeries including joint replacements.
Vascular disease is another category of lower extremity. Peripheral Artery Disease, for example, is a narrowing of the artery and limiting the amount of blood flowing to your lower extremities. This typically can cause pain and fatigue. Deep Vein Thrombosis can also cause extreme pain and swelling in your lower extremities.
There can be several causes of neurological disorders of the lower extremities. Paresthesia or a constant painful burning, numbing feeling in your legs is often the primary symptom of a neurological disorder. Causes can include radiculopathy that could be caused by a herniated disc. Neuropathy, caused by nerve damage, can be brought on by several factors including diabetes, autoimmune disorders, stroke, hypothyroidism, infections such as HIV or Lyme disease, neurological diseases such as MS. Neuropathy can eventually lead to permanent nerve damage or paralysis.
A disorder of the lower extremity could also be a combination of these three categories. For example a vascular disorder could severely cause the flow of blood to be so restricted that nerve damage results.
All of these conditions will impact your ability to get around. If you are unable to walk or stand for very long, your ability to maintain full time employment may be greatly reduced. Here’s what the Social Security Administration considers when evaluating your ability to ambulate effectively:
To ambulate effectively, individuals must be capable of sustaining a reasonable walking pace over a sufficient distance to be able to carry out activities of daily living. They must have the ability to travel without companion assistance to and from a place of employment or school. Therefore, examples of ineffective ambulation include, but are not limited to, the inability to walk without the use of a walker, two crutches or two canes, the inability to walk a block at a reasonable pace on rough or uneven surfaces, the inability to use standard public transportation, the inability to carry out routine ambulatory activities, such as shopping and banking, and the inability to climb a few steps at a reasonable pace with the use of a single hand rail. The ability to walk independently about one’s home without the use of assistive devices does not, in and of itself, constitute effective ambulation.
If you’re having trouble getting around, if it’s painful to walk or stand for a long period of time of if you and your doctor have discussed reducing your mobility to manage your pain, it might be time to apply for Social Security Disability benefits. That’s where we can help. Major changes in your life like dealing with pain or a reduced ability to get around are often stressful. Let Binder and Binder present your case to the government. With your doctor’s cooperation we will fight for the benefits you deserve.