During the month of October, Breast Cancer awareness is greatly focused upon. Every year, men and women are diagnosed with breast cancer, and several are unable to return to work during, and even after, treatment.
Individuals who have breast cancer with locally advanced cancer; carcinoma with metastasis to the supraclavicular or infraclavicular nodes, 10 or more axillary nodes or with distant metastasis; recurrent carcinoma; small-cell carcinoma; or cancer with secondary lymphedema that is caused by anticancer therapy and treated by surgery to salvage or restore the functioning of an upper extremity will meet Social Security’s breast cancer listing criteria.
Many with breast cancer will not meet Social Security’s breast cancer listing criteria. However, individual with breast cancer often experience many side effects from radiation and chemotherapy, including but not limited to, neuropathy of the hands and/or feet, fatigue, depression, and bladder or kidney problems. These side effects can be disabling and prevent individuals from returning to work.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with breast cancer, be sure to share all of your radiation and/or chemotherapy side effects with your doctors. It may even be helpful to keep a journal documenting how you feel from day to day.