Lupus is a disease in which the immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells, causing damage to the joints, blood vessels, skin, lungs, and heart. The disease more frequently affects women, African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and American Indians. Steroids have frequently been used to treat symptoms such as joint pain in lupus patients, but for over a century now there has been no drug specifically developed for lupus. Following a one year clinical trial, Human Genome Sciences Inc. has announced positive results of lupus patients using Benlysta for more effective treatment of pain, hair loss, and skin rash in lupus patients. Encouraged and optimistic, Thomas Watkins, Human Genome’s president and chief executive, noted the need to confirm the study’s initial results. The drug may be available as early as the first half of 2010. Please read the full article by David Olmos and Lisa Rapaport for even more details on the Benlysta study and its significance.
This spring we were glad to be part of the North Texas Chapter of the Lupus Foundation of America’s annual walk. Many people visited our booth and asked for more information on Social Security Disability and how to qualify for benefits. If you have been denied Social Security Disability, please feel free to contact our office to discuss how we may be able to help you. Recently, a client in Houston had a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge who found her severe lupus to be disabling based on her functional limitations. While lupus has a specific Listing in the Social Security Regulations, sometimes the precise requirements of the Listing are not satisfied. These cases are often appealed before a judge to decide the cases based on individual merit.