ADHD and Basic Med

Discussion in 'Medical Topics' started by ZB467, Jan 22, 2021.

  1. ZB467

    ZB467 Filing Flight Plan

    Jan 22, 2021

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    So I am a prospective student pilot. I recently graduated college and with my new found time and resources I finally have the opportunity to start working on my PPL. I recently discovered however that my ADHD diagnosis would be a major hinderance.

    During college I sought a diagnosis for ADHD and underwent behavioral counseling related to my associated avoidance behaviors and currently take non-stimulant medication in the form of NDRI antidepressants.

    The main reason for taking the medication is that it allows me to overcome my anxiety around beginning tasks that I find tedious. Overall I have never had significant problems focusing on tasks once I start them.

    My question is really is whether it is even possible for me to get a special issuance. I am not 100% sure whether I have ADHD as I was never formally diagnosed as a child, I was just told that my (elementary)school thought I was likely to have it. Is there anyway for me to get a special issuance.

    On the chance that Its not likely I could qualify for a class 3 SI, would it be better for me to get my sport certificate and apply in the future after demonstrating that I can indeed fly an airplane?
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2021
  2. Ravioli

    Ravioli Ejection Handle Pulled PoA Supporter

    Dec 1, 2014
    Somewhere else

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    Unwanted Guest - Perma-ban Pending
    1) You can't get Basic Med without first having held a Third Class (or higher) Medical after 14JUL2006. So that's not an option.
    2) Demonstrating that you can fly an airplane has no bearing on obtaining a medical.

    LSA is really the best option in 2021 if you've never held a medical.

    First consult with @bbchien ( to determine what would be needed to get a medical, then decide if the LSA rules would fit your desires if that is indeed your only way in to the skies.
  3. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Jul 31, 2007
    Catawba, NC

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    Well for some physical disabilities, it is part of the process. But, in this case you are right.

    Your problem is more complex than a straight ADHD answer because you've not diagnosed as such. In fact you seem to have an anxiety disorder. The problem is that since you're taking antidepressants for any reason, you're going to have to have a HIMS AME and it's going to cost you a lot of money to do the testing that is required. You CAN NOT FLY taking an NDRI PERIOD. There's no path for medical issuance for that. If you switch to an approved SSRI you can apply after a wait and more testing.

    A frank conversation with Dr. Bruce or another cognizant HIMS AME is well advised.

    As you may have surmised, do not submit an application without a clear path to issuance unless you want to abandon the concept of going sport pilot.
  4. Half Fast

    Half Fast Final Approach

    May 7, 2016
    Central Florida

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    Half Fast
    Minor correction. There are several paths into the air and not all require dealing with the FAA medical people.
  5. bbchien

    bbchien Touchdown! Greaser!

    Feb 13, 2005
    Bolingbrook, IL

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    Bruce C
    Cognition disturbance due to social anxiety disorder, is what the FAA is going to see.
    And they will see the antidepressants eventually even if you omit. That's a call 4 felony, ruining your life.

    Get with a good Board Certified psychiatrist, both for good outcome and credible help when certification time comes around. No PCPs, please....I'v trained them for a living and they get 3 weeks of psychiatry....all we can do is train them to recognize symptoms (That's good). But for recognizing WTH is really goin on, not so much.
  6. Daleandee

    Daleandee Pattern Altitude

    Mar 4, 2020

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    Dale Andee
    Get the Sport Certificate and enjoy the sky! :cool:
    kell490 and Half Fast like this.