in "any kind of physical labor" particularly no lifting of more than a few pounds, no bending, and no sitting for prolonged periods (Tr. 188). Finally, Dr. Goldman advocated plaintiff's participation in a construction job in March of 1983 as being both physically and emotionally beneficial (Tr. 189). In February, 1982 and in August, 1984 he noted plaintiff's depression, but offered no evidence of a disabling psychiatric impairment (Tr. 179, 190).
Since a residual capacity to perform light work was not applicable to plaintiff's past work, the ALJ proceeded to apply the medical-vocational tables set out in Appendix Z of the Regulations. The ALJ determined, based on plaintiff's age, education, work experience and capacity for a full range of light work, that plaintiff was not disabled. The ALJ found plaintiff capable of performing substantial gainful activities, pursuant to Rules 202.03 and 202.12. We find this conclusion to also be supported by substantial evidence.
Objective medical evidence and the opinions of plaintiff's physicians support the ALJ's findings. In January, 1982 plaintiff demonstrated a good range of motion about the cervical spine. There was minimal weakness of the right triceps muscle, with no diminution of the triceps reflex (Tr. 178). Electrodiagnostic studies in July, 1982 showed improvement in plaintiff's nerve conduction. There was no longer any evidence of a carpal tunnel and no active denervation in a radicular pattern (Tr. 199). Dr. Rogers observed in August, 1982 that plaintiff's range of motion in his right shoulder was nearly normal and his neck examination was unremarkable (Tr. 202). His condition was also unremarkable on November 4, 1982, and his discomfort had subsided with rest and aspirin (Tr. 204). In August of 1983 plaintiff again complained of neck and upper extremity pain, but Dr. Goldman's examination remained unchanged (Tr. 190).
CONSIDERATION OF SUBJECTIVE COMPLAINTS
It is well established that pain in and of itself may be a disabling condition. Taybron v. Harris, 667 F.2d 412, 415 (3d Cir. 1981); Smith v. Harris, 644 F.2d 985, 988 (3d Cir. 1981). In order to constitute a disability, an individual's subjective complaints of pain must be supported by objective medical evidence showing the existence of a physical impairment which could reasonably be expected to provide the pain. 42 U.S.C. § 423.
In the case sub judice, this court must determine whether the ALJ's decision on remand did consider the plaintiff's subjective complaints of pain and, if so, whether his decision to deny plaintiff's claim for DIB was supported by substantial evidence.
We find the ALJ's findings to be supported by substantial evidence. The ALJ concluded that plaintiff's allegations of some cervical and lumbar spine pain and limitation of motion and upper extremity pain were credible. The plaintiff's claim of constant, severe back pain and limitation of function were found not to be credible. Consideration of plaintiff's pain and exertional and non-exertional limitations was given, and it was concluded that they did not significantly compromise his capacity for a full range of light work.
There is corroborating medical evidence in the record that plaintiff maintained a nearly normal range of motion of the cervical spine throughout the period in question (Tr. 178, 202). The ALJ also noted that although degenerative changes of the spine are potentially painful, there was no medical evidence to support plaintiff's claim of disabling pain. Pain would have to be conveyed along the nerves emanating from the cervical nerve roots, however, there were no clinical signs or electrical evidence of disease resulting from the degenerating cervical spine (Tr. 281).
The ALJ concluded that the plaintiff's capacity for a full range of light work has not been significantly compromised by his exertional and non-exertional limitations. Therefore, his conclusion that plaintiff is not disabled is supported by substantial evidence. The motion of the plaintiff for summary judgment is DENIED. The motion of the defendant for summary judgment is GRANTED.
The motion of the plaintiff for summary judgment is DENIED.
The motion of the defendant for summary judgment is GRANTED.
Judgment is entered in favor of the defendant and against the plaintiff.
IT IS SO ORDERED.