PIP, DLA and AA
If this is your first visit, check out the community guide. You will have to Join us or Sign in before you can post.

PIP Mobility question - seizures and brain tumours

fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
edited October 2017 in PIP, DLA and AA
I am the carer to a gentleman who has non epileptic seizures affecting his left leg - the result of a large, but fortunately benign, brain tumour in his right parietal lobe.that was successfully excised in 2013. The neurologists are still unsure of the exact diagnosis for the seizures because the tumour was so deep in his brain. Anyway, when we are out the gentleman loses the tone in his left leg up to twenty times in two hours.Even without walking aids he doesn't drop to the ground, but instead staggers badly until he can regain his balance. He usually uses either two sticks or a rollator. Both change the momentum of the seizure; when he uses his sticks he falls forward and when he's using his rollator, he drops to knee height on his left side. First of all would what I describe be defined as him falling?' And secondly, would his disability entitle him to the high rate of PIP mobility? He might be able to walk fifty metres without having these seizures one minute (not literally!) but the next minute he may 'fall' four or five times.When he was originally assessed last December, he was awarded nothing. I wrote to them requesting the mandatory look at the info again thing, and he was awarded the the high rate of care and the low rate of mobility. Because his seizures are getting more frequent and are lasting longer, I have asked for a reassessment. Will the seizures be interpreted as him being unable to walk 'safely?' He should use a wheelchair, but refuses to accept that he does.

Many thanks - Fewkes

Replies

  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi fewkes and welcome

    To achieve the higher awardthe requirement is to stand and then walk 0-20 metres
    The reliability factors will play a big part in this

    Safely
    Repeatedly
    In a timely manner
    For the majority of time
    and To an acceptable standard

    I am fairly sure from what you describe that your gentleman would probably be unsafe and not meet an acceptable standard

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @fewkes1959

    Here is what the CAB say about moving around.

    Explain if you need to rest while walking or if you can't stand or walk at all. 
    Make it clear if the reason is because:  
    • you feel tired
    • you're in pain 
    • you're out of breath
    • you risk an injury - for example, falling, slipping, losing your balance or feeling dizzy
    It's important to explain symptoms such as pain or discomfort and explain how they affect you, including:
    • how often you get them
    • how long they last
    • if they're likely to increase the risk of an accident
    • if they mean it takes you longer to walk somewhere
    • if they affect your ability to walk any further
    • if they affect your ability to carry out any of the other activities on your PIP claim form
    If symptoms such as pain or breathlessness affect your walking most of the time, make that clear.
    Example 
    Alan lost his balance walking to the bathroom and fell over. Since the accident he's gone outside less and no longer visits his local shops because he's worried about falling over again. 
    Explain how you cope on both good days and bad and how you manage over a longer period of time (like a week). This gives the DWP a better picture of how you cope most of the time.
    Make it clear:
    • if you have good days and bad days
    • how often you have bad days
    • if you have bad days more often than not
    • how your difficulties and symptoms differ on good days and bad - for example, you can't walk as far or stand at all or the level of pain you feel is greater
    It's ok to estimate your bad days but say if you are. If it's too difficult to estimate - explain why. For example, because your condition fluctuates.
    Tell the DWP if you have (or are likely to) injure yourself walking or standing. 
    It's helpful to give an example and explain:
    • why it can happen
    • how often it can happen 
    • what effect it has on your physical and mental health
    • if it's because you can't judge for yourself when you to stop and rest
    • if it's because you don't get help from someone 
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Hi CR (thank you for the welcome) and Sam,

    Thank you for your responses. Would either of you know how the DWP define a 'fall.'

    I know that the dictionary definition is 'to move from a higher to a lower level, typically rapidly and without control:'

    So the person (or thing) does not have to end up on the ground.

    The other thing is -  I have been told that being reassessed because your symptoms are getting worse can lead to a reduction in the amount you receive as well as an increase. Presumably the assessor will seek to pick holes in the written information that made up the mandatory request for the information to be looked at again that resulted in the chap I look after, being awarded PIP in the first place. The Original assessor gave him zero points.

    Are there examples of this happening?

    Thanks

    Peter












  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
    @Debbie_Scope do you have any thoughts?
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    At any reassessment the whole claim will be looked at again and yes it is possible to lose points and even the whole award, it is rare but does happen.

    I don't know how the DWP define a fall but your gentleman , I suspect, does "fall" into that catagory

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Lol! Thanks ****!
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Sorry, didn't think! My apologies to all. Thanks ****neyRebel. 
  • Debbie_ScopeDebbie_Scope Member Posts: 947 Pioneering
    Hi @fewkes1959,

    You might find it helpful to look and the information on PIPinfo.net. You can link to the PIP assessment guide and also see case law which can often be helpful. You'll be able to see how the activity descriptors are assessed and how the reliability criteria should be applied. Use it alongside all of the advice above.

    Let us know how you get on with this and whether your friend is successful.

    Best wishes
    Debbie
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Hello Debbie.

    Thank you for your response. I will do as you suggest and peruse that website.

    I will also keep you informed. 

    Kind regards  

    Peter
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    @fewkes1959 All this info has focussed on the walking activity but from what you say the gentleman does not ever go out on his own. If that is the case or even if he does but shouldn't because the risk of this happening is always present, presumably with no warning, then he should qualify for points in the other mobility category planning and going on a journey. That together with the points he already has for walking distance should get him the higher rate for mobility. 
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Hi Wildlife, Thank you for your response. You are right, the guy never goes out by himself. He has bipolar and chronic anxiety. He already qualifies for the standard rate of mobility because of his chronic anxiety on buses.





  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    To be quite honest, since 2013, this poor guy has had his falling labelled as psychological because of his mental health history and because the falling only affects his left leg. The neurologists are only now beginning to accept that it is not.
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    As I say, the neurologists are finally accepting that this guys falling is due to non-epileptic seizures. However, would I be right in believing that even if it had been psychological in causation that it could still meet the criteria for the enhanced mobility component? 
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    I wouldn't like to say for sure but from what I know and my own experience probably not as they wouldn't accept falling was "psychological". It needs to have a physical cause preferably with medical evidence. From what you have told us this poor chap should be on the higher rate now and, as others have advised, you need to check the PIP descriptors to see which best fits his situation then he will need evidence to prove that to the assessor and DWP decision makers.

  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    1. Wildlife, Sorry for not getting back sooner. I probably chose the wrong word - if a person has functional neurological disorder affecting mobility, is it possible for it to meet the mobility criteria?
    2. Reading through a lot of the court judgements on PIPinfo.net, I am absolutely staggered by different judges interpretations of the same thing!
  • fewkes1959fewkes1959 Member Posts: 12 Listener
    Happy to let everyone know that the chap I look after has been successful in his claim for the high rate of PIP mobility. He now gets the high rate of care and the high rate of mobility. Great news for him.
  • Pippa_AlumniPippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,851 Disability Gamechanger
    Great news @fewkes1959, thanks for letting us know and congratulations!
  • Debbie_ScopeDebbie_Scope Member Posts: 947 Pioneering
    Wonderful news @fewkes1959

    Thanks for the update and thanks to everyone for their input and kind words.

    Best wishes
    Debbie
Sign in or join us to comment.