Pilot Career -
Wednesday, 02 January 2008 20:35
Hi Capt Lim,
I am thankful for the information given on your website. I would like to ask you a question.
I have got amblyopia or "lazy eye", that is, my right eye cannot see things clearly whereas my left eye see things perfectly. Can I be a pilot with this problem?
I am sorry to know that you have amblyopia (lazy eye). As I am not an eye specialist, I cannot give you any specific advice as to whether this would affect your hope of becoming a pilot. From what I have read in the Internet, amblyopia is an eye problem that causes poor vision in children. The problem starts, when the pathways of vision in the brain don't grow strong enough to carry vision messages from eye to brain. All babies are born with poor eyesight. As babies grow, their eyesight gets better. Good eyesight needs a clear, focused image that is the same in both eyes. If the image isn't clear in one eye, the vision pathways won't develop right and probably that was the reason why your right eye became "lazy".
Glasses are commonly prescribed to improve focusing or misalignment of the eyes. Surgery may be performed on the eye muscles to straighten the eyes if non-surgical means are unsuccessful. Surgery can help in the treatment of amblyopia by allowing the eyes to work together better. However, eye exercises are a limited form of treatment.
From what I know, if your right eye can be corrected to normal vision by glasses to 6/6 or 20/20, I don't see why you cannot become a pilot. Usually, if you want to get a PPL (Private Pilots License) the medical requirement is less stringent as compared to that of a military pilot. You can find out more from my links to FAA, especially on pilot medical requirements. Alternatively, consult an aviation medicine doctor or eye specialist for a more specific answer.