DI 24503.010 Evaluating Objective Medical Evidence
A. Definition of objective medical evidence
Objective medical evidence means signs, laboratory findings, or both, from a medical source. Objective medical evidence does not include symptoms, diagnoses, or medical opinions. For more information, see DI 24503.005 Categories of Evidence.
B. Sources of objective medical evidence
All medical sources, not just acceptable medical sources (AMSs), can submit evidence we categorize as objective medical evidence. For a definition of medical source, see DI 22505.001A.4. For a definition of AMS, see DI 22505.003 Evidence from an Acceptable Medical source (AMS).
C. How we evaluate objective medical evidence
We require objective medical evidence from an AMS to establish the existence of a medically determinable impairment (MDI) at step 2 of the sequential evaluation process. Once an MDI is established, we also consider objective medical evidence for all other findings in a claim, as appropriate.
For information on establishing an MDI, see DI 22505.003 Evidence from an Acceptable Medical Source (AMS).
D. Articulation requirements for objective medical evidence
Provide written analysis of how you considered objective medical evidence when establishing an MDI. When objective medical evidence is material to other analyses or conclusions in a claim, articulate that in the determination. For example, a discussion of objective medical evidence may be material to an analysis of symptoms. For more information, see DI 24501.021 Evaluating Symptoms.