PRK after USMC OCS, before Commissioning

Discussion in 'PRK' started by Tommygun_NH, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. Tommygun_NH

    Tommygun_NH New Member

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    Searched for threads touching on this matter but didn't find any. Hope this is not redundant.

    I graduated from the Marine Corps' 10 week PLC combined course last summer (2010) with an air contract and graduated with a bachelor's this May. I will be commissioning in the Marine Corps later this summer. I went to Pensacola for a flight physical in September 2010 (after I graduated from OCS). I was NPQ'd from pilot for a refraction error that was just a little too far over the limit.

    The information I have been getting is that once you're through OCS, there are no do-overs, I can't get PRK now, and the NPQ is final. Is this correct or is there a way for me to correct the error and retake a flight physical. Thank you all for your service and any advice you may be able to give.
  2. nugget61

    nugget61 Active Member None

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    What was your refraction error?
    Did you lose your air contract?
  3. Tommygun_NH

    Tommygun_NH New Member

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    Left eye was -1.00, right eye was -1.7. Vision was 20/40 in right, 20/30 in left. NPQ'd for SNA but qualified for SNFO and still have the air contract.
  4. Skirmisher

    Skirmisher Member

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    You're going to have to talk to your OSO for definitive answers, but I think that's a load of crap. You should be able to get PRK or do anything you need to do to get physically qualified for flight, but be advised, your commissioning will be significantly delayed as a result, especially with PRK because you have to wait 6 months after the surgery for NAMI to look at you. I am also an air contract and had a flight physical after I finished OCS last summer, and I was disqualified because of my EKG. Thankfully, the condition I have is easily waivable, and I had the necessary tests done to prove that it's harmless and right now I'm waiting for bumed's approval before I can schedule a 2nd flight physical. The downside of all of this is that my commissioning probably won't happen until next year, probably February, but for me, that's a very small price to pay to be a part of Naval Aviation. Definitely talk to your OSO, but I am certain that the NPQ is not final. Search around these forums because there is a ton of information on the PRK process.
  5. Tommygun_NH

    Tommygun_NH New Member

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    Thanks for the info Skirmisher. Sounds like I am in a situation similar to the one you yourself were in. I'm going to get in touch with my OSO asap and look at getting PRK, a BUMED and a NAMI waiver... however long that might take.
  6. ami5015

    ami5015 New Member

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    Nugget - how long did it take you to get your BUMED approved after PRK? Been waiting since 2/16.... and then I have to get NAMI approval
  7. nugget61

    nugget61 Active Member None

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    Took me almost 7 months. USN/PRK/OCS - I didn't pull priority and was told that the 3 months was only for winged folks (managed to talk to the NAMI eye doc while I was waiting for the approval) despite meeting the reqs listed in the waiver guide.
    I think you understand, but just to be sure, you won't get nami approval right away - you will get a go ahead letter saying your NPQ but that a waiver is in the works. The docs will check you out at OCS, which is when a waiver should be granted, however you will not have your flight physical until API which is where the final NAMI yea/nay comes
  8. MattWSU

    MattWSU Super User

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    I was in the same boat as you. Finished OCS last summer, had my flight physical shortly thereafter. My left eye was 20/20 and my right eye was 20/40 at -0.5. I got seriously jacked around and heard something different from EVERYONE. My OSO informed me that getting PRK would push my commissioning into the next FY and they weren't having it. After having to cancel two surgeries the night before because of this bullsh!t, I was pretty much ready to call it quits and go NFO / Ground.

    My OSA gave me the phone number of a reserve Marine with a 30 year career as an NFO. We had a long discussion about being an NFO and afterwards he asked me why exactly I was changing from SNA. I told him what happened and long story short, three months later I had my pilot slot back and was under the laser. I'm now 5 months post-op and am 20/15 in my previously 20/40 eye. I'm still waiting on BUMED and NAMI to approve my waiver but avoided having to do another flight physical as it's been less than a year since my last.

    PM me if you want any more details. This can be done, you just need to be persistent and probably should have addressed this much sooner. Also, depending on your OSO, it may be easier / harder to make this happen; they need to go to bat for you.
  9. CWJones411

    CWJones411 IRR

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    I'd be interested in hearing more about this. I'm 7 months post-op with 20/15 right and something like 20/40 left. I won't be eligible for a touch- up until December, and I'm set to commission in May '12. My MOI tells me that a touch-up wouldn't be possible because there's a 6 month waiver process and it would mess up the timeline for commissioning, let alone getting an Air Contract. The docs at Quantico said my eyes were within the standards for SNA but there's no way I'm leaving my left eye the way it is. Is a PRK touch-up possible after an Air Contract is secured?
  10. MattWSU

    MattWSU Super User

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    If you're 20/40 then your myopia is probably less than -6.0 diopters (0 to -6.0). In that case, you can submit a waiver in half that time: 3 months.

    Reference: http://www.med.navy.mil/sites/navmedmpte/nomi/nami/arwg/Documents/Waiver%20Guide%20-%20Ophthalmology%20100505.pdf

    My OSO initially told me the same about a default 6-month wait. I sent this document (and a few others) to her and got the go ahead to submit my waiver at three months. I think that this information needs to be better disseminated to MCRC.
  11. ami5015

    ami5015 New Member

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    Ah, that makes sense. I was unable to submit for my BUMED 3 month post op despite meeting the requirements listed in the waiver guide, my recruiter was unable to give me the exact reason other than to say that BUMED would not process earlier than 6 month post op. Once you got your BUMED letter back you were able to submit for NAMI, correct? I'm going USMC/OCS and that is the information I am being told. So how long did it take you to get the letter from NAMI saying your NPQ but that a waiver was in the works? I assume this is the letter that I will need before I can actually submit my package to the boards.

    Thanks for shedding light on this process, its good to hear from someone who was in the same situation.
  12. Tommygun_NH

    Tommygun_NH New Member

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    Quick update. Spoke with a Major who explained that, in the past, there had been newly commissioned Marines who went and got PRK and then applied for the SNFO to SNA switch. Sort of "don't ask for permission, beg for forgiveness" kind of thing. The gouge I have been getting is that those days are gone and there are people who have tried that recently and were administratively separated for it. Sticking with the SNFO route; even though it's not what I had in mind when I started on the aviation track, I couldn't be happier.
  13. CWJones411

    CWJones411 IRR

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    I was aiming for SNA but it's looking like I will need to go SNFO because of my PRK issues. I'd have no problems going NFO but the latest info I've seen doesn't make for much future in being a NFO in the Marine Corps, with the switch to all single seat aircraft in the next 10 years.
  14. Shamrocked

    Shamrocked New Member

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    i have -3.00 vision in both my eyes and i'm trying to do PLC while in the reserves...
    do i have to choose a ground contract and then switch to air after PRK surgery?
    and what year do i switch from ground to air? what year do i get my surgery?? :(
    im so lost

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