Can I Get Disability Benefits for Osteoporosis?

Disability Benefits

If you have osteoporosis, you likely struggle to work a regular job 40 hours per week. This disease develops in the body when bone mineral density and bone mass decrease. This can change the structure and reduce the strength of our bones. As a result, osteoporosis significantly increases your risk for broken bones. This bone disease can take a long time to properly diagnose and mostly affects people over 50.

In fact, you may not know you have the disease until you break a bone. Fractures from this disease happen most often in the following bones:

  • Hip
  • Vertebrae in your spine
  • Wrist

To avoid bone fractures, people with osteoporosis must try to:

  • Remain physically active
  • Do weight-bearing exercise
  • Quit smoking, if applicable
  • Take prescribed medications
  • Eat a nutrient rich diet

If you feel you cannot work due to osteoporosis, then you are not alone. Wrist breakages in particular make desk work very difficult to do. What’s more, the medication for osteoporosis may cause joint pain. We recently received a question from one of our readers about this disease and whether it qualifies for disability payments. Read on for our answer:

Reader question: Does osteoporosis qualify me for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration?

Answer: Maybe, but only if you have a related condition that prevents you from working. There is a listing for musculoskeletal disorders in the SSA Blue Book.

Why a Lawyer Makes You More Likely to Get Disability Benefits for Osteoporosis

If osteoporosis makes you unable to work, then you can apply for Social Security disability benefits. Getting approved for SSD benefits with this specific condition can be challenging, but not impossible. And government data shows that people who file SSD claims through lawyers are 2.9x more likely to get benefits.

IMPORTANT: To qualify for disability, your medical evidence must prove your health makes you unable to work for 12+ months. You also must prove your diagnosis directly causes or is related to your inability to work.

If you regularly see your doctor, follow their orders, and still can’t work due to your disease, reach out to a lawyer. They can help you get your records together and apply for benefits. A disability lawyer can also tell you if your situation qualifies at no upfront cost to you.

This is what a lawyer and the SSA will look for in any disability case:

  • Do you have at least one long-term health problem?
  • Does this condition meet the SSA’s definition of a disability?
  • Are you younger than 67 and not currently getting any Social Security benefits?
  • Will your medical condition keep you from working at least one year or result in your death?
  • Are you still working and making more than the max income limit each month?

What does the SSA Consider When it Evaluates Fractures from Osteoporosis?

The agency looks at your history of pathologic fractures of the bones in the skeletal spine, extremities, or other parts of the skeletal system when reviewing your application for benefits. “Pathologic fractures” result from:

  • Disorders that weaken the bones, such as osteoporosis, osteogenesis imperfecta, or any other skeletal dysplasia
  • Medication side effects
  • Disorders of the endocrine or other body systems

To qualify, your fractures occur on separate, distinct occasions, rather than several all at the same time. That said, these types of fractures may affect the same bone(s) multiple times.

There is no required time that must go by between these bone breaks. However, all three must occur within the same 12-month period. Your SSD claim should include medical records showing how your osteoporosis limits your ability to work. This is the only way the SSA will approve your condition for SSD benefits. 

Would A Condition Related to Osteoporosis Qualify Me for Benefits?

Yes. For example, if joint, muscle, or bone pain is a side effect of your osteoporosis medication, then physical labor or desk work may be difficult for you. You may qualify for benefits through a medical-vocational allowance if you do not have a condition in the SSA’s Blue Book but still cannot work.

Be sure to maintain all medical records. Musculoskeletal diseases qualify you for benefits if they prevent you from working in any job that would hire you. In other words, if you have one or more of the health problems that often affect people with osteoporosis, many of these issues do qualify. This is why we recommend you put every health issue you have on your application.

How to Get Expert Claim Help Free of Charge

Not sure what all you need to get benefits for your specific health issues? A Social Security lawyer can answer your claim questions over the phone for free. You’ll pay nothing now for help filing your claim.

Attorneys won’t take on your case unless they believe you qualify for SSD benefits. That means you owe $0 for their help unless the SSA awards you benefits. If you win, then you’ll only pay one small fee out of your back pay. 

Ready to see if you may qualify for free expert claim help by phone? Click the button below to take your free online benefits quiz and connect with a local expert now:

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Laura Schaefer is the author of The Teashop Girls, The Secret Ingredient, and Littler Women: A Modern Retelling. She is also an active co-author or ghostwriter of several nonfiction books on personal and business development. Laura currently lives in Windermere, Florida with her husband and daughter and works with clients all over the world. Visit her online at and