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Pamela Keyser v. Commissioner Social

June 1, 2011

PAMELA KEYSER, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
COMMISSIONER SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION,
DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.



D.C. No. 1:08-cv-01268-CL Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Oregon Mark D. Clarke, Magistrate Judge, Presiding

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Thomas, Circuit Judge

FOR PUBLICATION

OPINION

Submitted March 9, 2011

Portland, Oregon

Before: Dorothy W. Nelson, Sidney R. Thomas, and Susan P. Graber, Circuit Judges.

Opinion by Judge Thomas; Dissent by Judge Graber

*The panel unanimously concludes this case is suitable for decision without oral argument. See Fed. R. App. P. 34(a)(2).

7231

COUNSEL

OPINION

Pamela Keyser appeals the district court's decision affirming the Commissioner of Social Security's denial of her applications for disability insurance benefits and supplemental security income benefits under Titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. We reverse and remand for further proceedings.

I Pamela Keyser applied for disability benefits based on combined impairments including bullous emphysema, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. Keyser alleges that her disability began when her right lung collapsed. Her lung was surgically repaired and she was discharged eight days later. Keyser was advised that the chance of either her right lung collapsing again, or her left lung collapsing for the first time, was as high as thirty percent. Two of Keyser's treating physicians, Dr. Marc Jacobs and Dr. Stephen Knapp, reported that Keyser was unable to work because of her severe emphysema and potential for another collapsed lung. In addition to these physical ailments, Drs. Jacobs and Knapp reported that Keyser suffered from severe depression and generalized anxiety disorder, which also impacted her ability to work. Dr. Knapp referred Keyser to a psychiatrist, Dr. Monteverdi, who diagnosed Keyser with bipolar disorder, and paranoid and schizotypal personality traits. Dr. Monteverdi assessed Keyser's Global Assessment of Functioning*fn1 at 55 to 65 and completed a medical source statement indicating that Keyser had moderate limitations in a variety of areas.

A year after the onset of the disability, Dr. Lahman conducted an agency review of Keyser's psychiatric condition and reported his findings on a Psychiatric Review Technique Form. He noted that Keyser had medically determinable impairments of depression and anxiety, but concluded that the degree of limitation in three functional areas (restriction of activities of daily living, difficulties in maintaining social functioning, and difficulties in maintaining concentration, persistence, or pace) were mild. Dr. ...


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