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Home > Medical Examination > Can someone still be a pilot if he has heart problems?
Can someone still be a pilot if he has heart problems?
Pilot Career - Medical Examination
Sunday, 25 December 2011 05:58

Continental Airline Pilot Dies Mid-flight!
 
Dear Capt Lim,

Can someone still be a pilot if he has heart problems?

Mika, France

Hi Mika,

Your question is not very specific. Anyway, a mild heart problem does not necessary ground a pilot for life. According to FAA, some heart problems that are treatable such as bypass surgery, angioplasty (“balloon” procedure), stem implantation and atherectomy would not stop a pilot from flying after the recovery period.

In order to obtain a special exemption, any applicants must prove "to the satisfaction of the Federal Air Surgeon that the duties authorized by the class of medical certificate applied for can be performed without endangering public safety."

What this really means is that if you have one of these conditions, then there is extra testing that you must do to show that you are still safe to operate aircraft.

Before certification can be considered, a six-month recovery period must elapse. If the applicant has had a heart attack, then this allows time for the heart to adequately heal. If the individual has undergone a procedure, the most likely time that a restenosis (renarrowing) will occur is during the first six months. After this time, complications are much less likely.

However, certain serious conditions (significant CAD, angina pectoris, and a history of myocardial infarction) would permanently ground the pilot

The FAA currently considers some issues absolutely disqualifying; it include double heart valve and complete heart replacement.

For more information, please refer to an aviation medical specialist.

PS. To check for any latest updates or postings, you can follow my new Twitter at @CaptKHLim


Ask the Doctor – Heart Attack

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heart
Hii i have an heart issue one of my valves was not working but was replaced and Everything is great now just a minor leak that i take medicine for
My doctor doesnt say that the leak is nothing to worry about.
lio , 03 Jun, 2013

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