Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a debilitating condition that can affect a person’s ability to live his or her life to the fullest. The severity of MS can very from person to person however, and because of this, a full assessment must be made before applying for any Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

It is notoriously difficult to make a successful first-time application for disability benefits, and this is generally because of the accuracy of information required. Because of the high standard of accuracy needed for disability benefit applications, it is important that you work closely with your doctor during the application process.

How is MS usually measured by a doctor?

There are several different ways in which MS is measured for the purposes of SSD applications. These are seen as tools for your doctor to be able to use in communicating the severity of your MS disability on your application.

The Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) is often alternatively named the Kurtzke scale. This assessment mainly focuses on physical mobility in regard to your illness, and therefore, assesses you mainly on your ability to walk. After a 30-minute assessment, a medical professional will be able to chart you from between zero and 10 on the EDSS scale.

The Functional System Score (FSS) is another type of assessment that looks at the functioning of your central nervous system. This creates a rating of between zero and 6 based on speech, bladder function and control of the body.

If you or a loved one is suffering from MS, it is important to work with a medical professional during the application process for disability benefits.