In early August 2018, a long-awaited jury trial concluded with a verdict against the Monsanto corporation regarding the possible dangers of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup herbicide made for many years by Monsanto. Then, the jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff — Dewayne Johnson, a former school groundskeeper dying of cancer — ordering Monsanto and the other defendants to pay $289 million. Mr. Johnson alleged — and there are hundreds of other lawsuits making the same allegations — that his exposure to Roundup caused him to contract non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (a form of cancer). Monsanto denied and continues to deny any link between exposure to glyphosate and the cancer. However, the jury believed the linkage and, as noted, found in favor of Mr. Johnson. See the news report here. Here at Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC, we are familiar with clients who have contracted non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (“NHL”). Those suffering from the condition are also likely eligible for Social Security Disability benefits (“SSDI”). So, if you have NHL or have any medical condition that impairs your ability to work, then we here at Ascend Disability encourage you to apply for benefits. SSDI is available to every worker in New Orleans and elsewhere in Louisiana. Know and understand your rights – contact Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC. Here is some additional information on glyphosate, NHL and SSDI.
New Orleans SSDI Lawyers — What is Glyphosate?
As noted, glyphosate is the active ingredient used in many weedkillers. The most popular brand containing glyphosate is “Roundup” manufactured by Monsanto. Monsanto obtained the patent for glyphosate and began making Roundup in the early 1970s. Therefore, other chemical manufacturers started using glyphosate in their weed-killing products. In 2018, it is estimated that four out of every five farms in the United States uses some form of glyphosate. Glyphosate is sprayed on all the vegetation on a farm, both the weeds and the food crops. Glyphosate is absorbed by the plants — both “good” plants and “bad” plants — into the roots, stems and leaves and thus, cannot be washed off. The chemical blocks certain biological activity in the “bad” plants and thus kills the weeds. But, as noted, glyphosate is on all the plants and as a result, glyphosate has been found in many foods like ice cream and kids cereals. Many consumers are beginning to avoid products containing glyphosate, and one daycare in Chicago banned General Mills “Cheerios” oatmeal based on reports of unsafe levels of the chemical.
New Orleans SSDI Attorneys — What is Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma?
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a type of cancer that forms in the body’s lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a network of vessels that spreads non-blood fluids through the body. If a person develops NHL, tumors develop in the lymph nodes and also spread.
The most common symptom of NHL is painless swollen lymph nodes in your neck, armpits or in the groin area. Other symptoms may include:
- Abdominal pain or swelling
- Chest pain, coughing or trouble breathing
- Persistent fatigue
- Night sweats
- Unexplained weight loss
At the initial stage, NHL does not necessarily impair a person’s ability to work. But, as the condition progresses — like all cancers — NHL becomes more disabling.
New Orleans Social Security Disability Attorneys — NHL and SSDI: Listing of Impairments
The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers the SSDI program. As one might expect, the SSA maintains a list of medical conditions that shows causes of people being unable to work. If you have a disease, illness or medical condition on the list — called the Listing of Impairments — your application for SSDI benefits is somewhat “easier” since the level of proof needed with respect to your medical condition is less. If your medical condition is because of a new or unfamiliar disease or pathogen or virus, then substantial and weighty evidence and expert studies may be needed to convince the SSA that the condition is real and that the condition causes disability.
In any event, with respect to NHL, the later stages of the cancer and the more aggressive versions are on the List of Impairments. Moreover, acute and aggressive versions of NHL are on the Compassionate Allowance program.
The compassionate allowance program lists about 200 medical conditions where SSDI gets awards almost automatically. This list also provides immediate help — compassionate help — for those suffering from the diseases and illnesses.
In addition to NHL, some other conditions on the compassionate allowance list include:
- Various cancers with distant metastases or inoperable, unresectable or recurrent
- Huntington Disease
- Heart transplant patients
- Congenital muscular dystrophy
If diagnosed with NHL, you are likely eligible for SSDI benefits, but you cannot obtain benefits unless you apply. And the application must have proper documentation and there are various deadlines and procedures. Even if you have a listed condition, benefits can be denied based on the failure to provide the required paperwork. So, as with all applications for SSDI, your physician and the medical records are key.
As the NHL linked page states, the SSA recommends the following minimum documentation from treating physicians and hospitals for an NHL evaluation:
- Clinical examination
- Imaging tests
- Pathology reports
- Surgical procedures
- Pertinent treatment records
- Up-to-date progress notes
SSDI Attorneys In New Orleans: Contact Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC Today
For more information, contact the proven New Orleans SSDI lawyers at Ascend Disability Lawyers, LLC. If diagnosed with NHL, we can certainly help you maximize your chances of success in obtaining benefits. We have years of experience helping New Orleans and Louisiana disabled workers obtain their SSDI benefits. Contact us via email or by calling (855) 631-2544.