The opinion of the court was delivered by: GARY SHARPE, Magistrate Judge Page 2
Linda G. Matice brings this action to contest the denial of benefits by
the Commissioner of Social Security. Her brief consists of a short note
informing the court of additional impairments which affect her ability to
work. She included reports from two different doctors with her short
letter.*fn1 This court finds that the Commissioner's decision should be
affirmed since it was based on substantial evidence.
Matice filed an application for benefits on June 20, 1991. In a
decision dated May 19, 1992, Administrative Law Judge James Johnsen found
that she was disabled and awarded benefits due to bronchial asthma. On
September 27, 1996, Matice was informed that the Commissioner planned to
review her claim to determine whether her disability continued. On July
9, 1997, the Commissioner found that Matice's disability had ceased. The
initial determination was affirmed after
she testified before a disability hearing officer on January 27,
1998. Matice appealed this determination, waiving her right to a personal
appearance before an ALJ. On September 3, 1998, the ALJ considered the
case de novo and found that her disability had ceased on July
31, 1997. The ALJ's decision became the final decision of the
Commissioner when the Appeals Council denied her request for review on
August 6, 1999.
On October 29, 1999, Matice brought this action pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 405(g) seeking review of the Commissioner's final determination.
The Commissioner filed an answer and a certified administrative
transcript on December 20, 2000.*fn2
Matice contends that the ALJ's decision was erroneous. She claims that
the medical evidence shows that she was disabled and that she experienced
The Commissioner maintains that the ALJ's determination was supported
by substantial evidence and should be affirmed. Specifically, the
Commissioner contends that the ALJ properly evaluated: (1) the
medical evidence; (2) her subjective complaints of pain; and, (3)
her ability to do sedentary work.
Matice was thirty-five years old when the ALJ issued the decision in
this case. She previously worked as a cashier and stocker. She completed
the tenth grade.
A. Previous Disability Determination
Matice had a long history of asthma starting as a young child, which
had been quiescent for years, then returned when she was twenty-three
years of age. Since that time, she experienced numerous episodes
requiring emergency room treatment. Matice used her inhalers on a steady
basis as prescribed. The ALJ found that her clinical finding on pulmonary
function testing did not meet or equal the criteria for the asthma
listing section at 20 C.F.R. Part 404, Subpart P, Appendix 1. However,
her treating physician, Dr. Abdur Jalalzai, assessed that she was unable
to lift ten pounds, could never engage in several postural activities and
was environmentally restricted from ...