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MATICE v. COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY

February 11, 2004.

LINDA G. MATICE, Plaintiff
v.
COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, Defendant



The opinion of the court was delivered by: GARY SHARPE, Magistrate Judge Page 2

DECISION AND ORDER

I. INTRODUCTION

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.

  II. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

  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 Page 3 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

  III. CONTENTIONS

  Matice contends that the ALJ's decision was erroneous. She claims that the medical evidence shows that she was disabled and that she experienced disabling pain.

  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 Page 4 medical evidence; (2) her subjective complaints of pain; and, (3) her ability to do sedentary work.

  IV. FACTS*fn3

  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 ...


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