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HOOK v. BOWEN

January 5, 1988

William Hook, Plaintiff
v.
Otis R. Bowen, M.D., Secretary of Health and Human Services, Defendant



The opinion of the court was delivered by: RAMBO

 SYLVIA H. RAMBO, United States District Judge.

 This is an action under 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) and 1383(c)(3) to review the final decision of the Secretary denying plaintiff's claims for disability insurance benefits and Supplemental Security Income. Plaintiff alleged disability as of August 20, 1983 due to arthritis, bad back, ulcers, and high blood pressure. The administrative law judge ("ALJ") found that plaintiff retained the residual functional capacity to perform sedentary work and was therefore not disabled. The appeals counsel deemed plaintiff's request for review.

 The magistrate's recommendation that the matter be remanded is rejected, acknowledging nonetheless the correctness of his analysis of the woefully inadequate ALJ report. The Secretary's final decision will be upheld based upon the evidence of record.

 Plaintiff argues that he has so much pain that he is totally disabled. The Social Security Disability Benefits Reform Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. § 423) provides, in part:

 
(5)(A) An individual shall not be considered to be under a disability unless he furnishes such medical and other evidence of the existence thereof as the Secretary may require. An individual's statement as to pain or other symptoms shall not alone be conclusive evidence of disability as defined in this section ; there must be medical signs and findings, established by medically acceptable clinical or laboratory diagnostic techniques, which show the existence of a medical impairment that results from anatomical, physiological, or psychological abnormalities which could reasonably be expected to produce the pain or other symptoms alleged and which, when considered with all evidence required to be furnished under this paragraph (including statements of the individual or his physician as to the intensity and persistence of such pain or other symptoms which may reasonably be accepted as consistent with the medical signs and findings), would lead to a conclusion that the individual is under a disability (emphasis added).

 This provision has been held to be applicable to a claim pending at the time of its enactment. Hampton v. Bowen, 785 F.2d 1308, 1310 (5th Cir. 1986).

 A review of the record does not support claimant's position that his pain is of such a degree as to prove disabling. Plaintiff complained of joint pain, polyarthralgia, swelling of joints, joint problems in hands and low back (TR. 253). Rheumatoid factor and sedimentation rates were negative (TR. 250, 253). Plaintiff had full range of motion in all joints (TR. 246, 254, 279-280). Xrays of the lumbar spine revealed mild degenerative arthritis (TR. 246, 263, 278-281). Tenderness and swelling was noted in the finger joints, but not found to be clinically significant (TR. 254, 246, 310). Plaintiff has diminished flexion of both wrists and mild restriction of extension (TR. 277, 257, 308, 327).

 Dr. Feinstein could not document a medical cause for plaintiff's subjective complaints (TR. 247). Active rheumatoid or inflammatory disease was ruled out (TR. 250, 257). A physical examination at Geisinger Medical Center failed to substantiate plaintiff's subjective complaints.

 The above are only a few of the many medical findings which support the Secretary's decision. The defendant has thoroughly and objectively set forth the medical findings in the brief in support of his motion for summary judgment which are adopted herein. The Secretary's finding that plaintiff retained the residual functional capacity to perform sedentary work is supported by substantial evidence.

 ORDER

 In accordance with the accompanying memorandum, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:


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