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The Doctor is in! Ask a Flight Surgeon!

Doc1996

New Member
Hey everyone,

Hope you're all doing well. Quick back story, had back pain for a while, originally thought it was a herniated disc since all symptoms pointed to one. However, after conducting a MRI, it was actually a tumor taking up 80% of my spinal cavity up and the Docs had to remove as soon as possible. If a few more days would have passed, I would have been either paralyzed or dead.

I just had my tumor removed about less than a week ago, it was just removed with a laminectomy (T11-L1). I have no hardware or fusion done to my spine. The lab reports haven't come back yet, but from my surgeon's experience it presents itself as benign tumor. Everything else that is supposed to normal is normal.

Scoliosis: None | Alignment: Normal | Vertebral body heights are preserved | No damage to disc's | No Stenosis at all.

I'm currently walking and am able to use all my extremities without numbness or pain. The NAMI medical waiver guide doesn't provide much insight into tumors removed with a laminectomy, the word laminectomy is mentioned twice under Chapter 13 and none of those mentions apply to my particular scenario.

I'm wondering if anyone has ever seen anyone get a waiver for this (with a full recovery, of course) ? I'm just trying to weigh my future career options, not entirely sure if the Navy will "medically retire" me from the reserves. I could be looking at a possible indefinite hiatus from the military.
Would appreciate all input & advice.

Very Respectfully,
HM3 Paul
 
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Bear27

New Member
Was wondering if any flight surgeon could confirm NAMI's stance on molluscum contagiosum for SNA. There is no mention of it in the waiver guide so I am assuming it is a non-factor, but was hoping to confirm this. Thank you.
 

hooyahnavy

New Member
Hey all, currently a MIDN 1/C in the ROTC program that service assigned SNA. I'm currently working on my aviation physical and had to do an x-ray for seasonal allergies, today I found out that I've been ordered to do a sinus CT for it. I'm only allergic to pollen during the spring and my allergies are very minor. Are there any disqualifying factors around this? I have no clue what they saw in the x-ray or what they're looking for with the CT.
 
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taxi1

Well-Known Member
pilot
Hey all, currently a MIDN 1/C in the ROTC program that service assigned SNA. I'm currently working on my aviation physical and had to do an x-ray for seasonal allergies, today I found out that I've been ordered to do a sinus CT for it. I'm only allergic to pollen during the spring and my allergies are very minor. Are there any disqualifying factors around this? I have no clue what they saw in the x-ray or what they're looking for with the CT.
How did they find out you had seasonal allergies? Are they debilitating? Beyond the normal itchy eyes everyone gets Spring and Fall?
 

tdodge

New Member
Currently in final phase of OCS, and during a cardiologist referral an ECG revealed what the doc believes to be a bicuspid aortic valve (still awaiting confirmation via MRI). According to NAMI standards this is DQ for aviation with no chance of waiver, but I'm wondering if any flight surgeons here have experience with this issue and know if there's a chance of a waiver if there are no symptoms? It's a shame because I'm already almost done with OCS and finding this out now. Looks like the USAF and Army write waivers for it, so maybe this is the trend?
 

RandyNewman

New Member
Hey all,

I'm having an issue with my flight physical, specifically my eye exam and an astigmatism (heterotropia). Long story, but basically I'm an SNA select who has a minor astigmatism in my left eye which was surgically corrected when I was 5. I got a wavier for it several years ago when I got my NROTC scholarship activated, and have multiple letters from civilian optometrists noting that the severity of the astigmatism is far less than the limit dictated by NAMI (<6 degrees). Now, my depth perception is no where near passing on the Randot, AFVT or Verhoeff, which I understand disqualifies me for SNA. I went into my flight physical eye exam today at West Point(Closest military provider) knowing this and much to my surprise, the optometrist there told me that my astigmatism was rather severe and that with one that obvious, he wasn't going to even finish my physical, much less recommend me for flying duty of any kind. At this point, I'm pursuing a second opinion and hoping to be redesignated as an SNFO so I can ultimately still be a part of the Naval Aviation community. I guess my issue is that the doctor entered that information into BUMED already, so I'm not sure if they're going to disqualify me from all flying duty on that basis alone, before I get a second opinion. I'm not really sure where to turn at this point since my unit medical officer is new to the job and I was wondering if anyone had any relevant experience.

Thank you for your time !
 

ElliotMoore8

New Member
Has anyone had to submit a waiver request for Orthopedic Retained Hardware specifically over the clavicle? I am just curious to know the likelihood of NAMI approving the waiver or if they are going to recommend getting the hardware removed and apply again.

I am active duty applying for SNA/SNFO. The fracture happened during my active time and I have since fully recovered. The hardware does not cause any discomfort in any situation and I have full range of motion.

Any insight helps. Thanks!
 

WannabeAOP

New Member
Hey all,

I'm having an issue with my flight physical, specifically my eye exam and an astigmatism (heterotropia). Long story, but basically I'm an SNA select who has a minor astigmatism in my left eye which was surgically corrected when I was 5. I got a wavier for it several years ago when I got my NROTC scholarship activated, and have multiple letters from civilian optometrists noting that the severity of the astigmatism is far less than the limit dictated by NAMI (<6 degrees). Now, my depth perception is no where near passing on the Randot, AFVT or Verhoeff, which I understand disqualifies me for SNA. I went into my flight physical eye exam today at West Point(Closest military provider) knowing this and much to my surprise, the optometrist there told me that my astigmatism was rather severe and that with one that obvious, he wasn't going to even finish my physical, much less recommend me for flying duty of any kind. At this point, I'm pursuing a second opinion and hoping to be redesignated as an SNFO so I can ultimately still be a part of the Naval Aviation community. I guess my issue is that the doctor entered that information into BUMED already, so I'm not sure if they're going to disqualify me from all flying duty on that basis alone, before I get a second opinion. I'm not really sure where to turn at this point since my unit medical officer is new to the job and I was wondering if anyone had any relevant experience.

Thank you for your time !
I personally would get a second opinion/flight physical from a different doctor if possible. It never hurts to try, and that way you'd know you did all you could.

Edit: I'm no flight doc, but during my flight physical I failed the depth perception. A different doc walked in at the perfect time and tested me immediately after. Passed with flying colors. No clue what the difference was, but was happy to have had the opportunity to retest.
 

picklesuit

Dirty Hinge
pilot
Contributor
Has anyone had to submit a waiver request for Orthopedic Retained Hardware specifically over the clavicle? I am just curious to know the likelihood of NAMI approving the waiver or if they are going to recommend getting the hardware removed and apply again.

I am active duty applying for SNA/SNFO. The fracture happened during my active time and I have since fully recovered. The hardware does not cause any discomfort in any situation and I have full range of motion.

Any insight helps. Thanks!
I have retained hardware in my hand, it wasn’t a difficult process. Find a Flight Surgeon that speaks NAMI, they will get the appropriate package put together. Probably need photos to show you have no restrictions of movement/use.
 

FinkUFreaky

Well-Known Member
pilot
I have retained hardware in my hand, it wasn’t a difficult process. Find a Flight Surgeon that speaks NAMI, they will get the appropriate package put together. Probably need photos to show you have no restrictions of movement/use.
If I recall yours was not too too long ago (after wings)? Always a different standard for applicants... That said I haven't read that portion of the waiver guide (nor plan to), and entirely possible and hopefully is waiverable!
 

picklesuit

Dirty Hinge
pilot
Contributor
I don’t see anything that’s a hard no in there. I’d go with my original advice. Find a flight doc, have them reach out to NAMI, by email or phone, and get what they’d consider. Go from there.

Also, since you are AD, if removal is an option, and Uncle Sugar is paying, might be worth it.
 
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