First Class Medical (VA Disability)

Discussion in 'Medical Topics' started by bingofuel5, Sep 10, 2021.

  1. bingofuel5

    bingofuel5 Filing Flight Plan

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    bingofuel5
    Good Morning,
    I am reaching out today to ask some questions on what I can do to obtain a first class medical. I have recently got out of the Air Force after doing 4 years as a fire fighter. I am currently 23 years old and have received a 80% disability rating with PTSD and a side diagnosis of alcohol use disorder, moderate. Is this a complete career killer? My plan was to attend ATP and ultimately fly for hire as a profession. I have never been arrested for a DUI or anything of the sort. I am looking for some help of what I can do, I am completely prepared to jump through any hoops possible as this is my dream job. I have read the FAA takes things by a case by case basis and am wondering if I explain why I got the VA ratings that they would understand and grant me a SI for the first class medical. Thanks in advance!
    Bingofuel
     
  2. bingofuel5

    bingofuel5 Filing Flight Plan

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    I have forgot to mention that I am not seeking any treatment through the VA for my disability rating and currently am not taking any medications, I have just recently received this rating as of 1 September 2021
     
  3. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
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  4. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Definitely don’t do anything until you conduct a consultation with a HIMS Senior AME who is well known to help with cases similar to yours.

    get the education you need about the process before spending big wads of training cash.

    And above all, do not apply for a medical until the AME says you will be issued without any doubt.
     
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  5. TCABM

    TCABM Pattern Altitude

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    While it may not be impossible, you may have a difficult and expensive case for your medical approval. You will need all of your VA documentation and service medical records.

    I highly recommend consulting with a Senior AME who specializes in difficult cases before you start down this path. And whatever you do, don’t try to hide any of this from the FAA.
     
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  6. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    On a local pilot forum, this was posted by an AME based in the DFW area

    Just back from the Aerospace Medical Meeting. The FAA presented their data on pilots flying w a PTSD diagnosis. Its becoming more common. It is complicated. It requires a Special issuance. Your AME has to defer but will determine if you are
    otherwise qualified. Take all your VA disability rating/ evaluation records. You then must see a FAA HIMS psychologist. Most pilots do receive a SI.
    timeline? ~6 to 12 mos.
    You are not SOL! Thanks for your service.
    Drew Sambell MD AME
     
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  7. whitepines

    whitepines Filing Flight Plan

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    I'm not a doctor, but I've heard enough stories to know that just the "alcohol use disorder" alone is going to require you permanently give up alcohol, attend AA, and submit to random drug testing for as long as you hold a medical. That's not even going into the other issues.

    As others have said, it's going to be a long, expensive road. You need to find a HIMS AME and do not apply for a medical until they say to.
     
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  8. bingofuel5

    bingofuel5 Filing Flight Plan

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    I will most definitely be completely transparent with the FAA and the AME and disclose all my VA medical records. I have read about pilots in the past who got into major trouble
     
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  9. lbfjrmd

    lbfjrmd Line Up and Wait

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    Fairly straight forward: consult AME, apply with a deferral from the AME, await letter from FAA, do as FAA advises.
     
  10. bbchien

    bbchien Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I would gather all your records FIRST, and seek CBT first. CBT really does work. You wlll not win the issuance until and unless every symptom is credibly in remission and it does not help that you have not sought even the basic tools. There will not be enough time to credibly do this between the FAA demand letter for HIMS AME and HIMS psychiatrtst evaluation and the end of the 60 + 30 day extension, as CBT takes some time.

    Nothing wrong with what Dr. Lou proposes- but unless you are confident that every symptom will be credibly resolved, being well comes first than THEN FAA success. "Flying with PTSD" simply means, not losing your PTSD award and being credibly warranted to airworthy.

    And it's not a HIMS psychologist. It's a HIMS psychiatrist. Very different professional.

    BTW the Psychiatry trained AME meeting starts Monday....