Disability Benefits for Bronchiectasis

If your bronchiectasis causes frequent lung problems requiring medical intervention, you may be able to get disability benefits.

Updated October 26, 2016

Bronchiectasis is a type of obstructive lung disease that destroys the body’s large airways. It is caused by chronic inflammation or infection of the airways. Bronchiectasis can be congenital (present at birth) or can develop later in life. Bronchiectasis is a common complication of cystic fibrosis and AIDs. Symptoms include: bluish skin color, wheezing, coughing up blood, weight loss, bad breath, and fatigue.

To win approval for your disability claim, your diagnosis of bronchiectasis must be confirmed by chest x-ray or other diagnostic imaging and your bronchiectasis must cause frequent exacerbations or complications (such as bronchitis, pneumonia, or bloody cough) that are serious enough to require medical intervention. The episodes must require three hospitalizations lasting at least 48 hours each, in a one-year period (at least 30 days apart).

For a description of how you can qualify due to a doctor's restrictions rather than on the above listings, as well as the basic requirements for a respiratory claim, see our article on disability for chronic respiratory disorders.

If you have chronic lung infections but have not received a diagnosis of bronchiectasis, see our article on disability for chronic lung infections.

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