Forums: Community: Skydivers with Disabilities:
Coolon Cancer and Tandem Rating

 


AJEvans  (D 25956)

Aug 3, 2004, 8:16 PM
Post #1 of 4 (948 views)
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Coolon Cancer and Tandem Rating Can't Post

Well, long story short … I was diagnosed with colon cancer back in mid March of this year and had a 15cm mass removed from my Transverse Colon. A couple of days later the Path report showed the mass and three of the 18 lymph nodes tested positive for Carcinoma , yep the big C. and I don’t mean Crabs.Wink I started a really intensive chemotherapy schedule soon after that and have been “dosed” for three days every other week since. I am in the middle of my treatment and the days I am getting treated tend to really suck. It took a bit to get back to jumping with the incision and chemo but I continued to teach the newbies and got back in the air ASAP. Now I have a routine and get in more fun jumps along with all the student loads.

Now the part I am pissed about… I want to get my tandem rating and my DZ could use another TI, so I scheduled a flight physical and started getting lined-up. Guess what, I didn’t pass. I knew I wouldn’t get away without disclosing everything, but I “dumbed-it-down” a little and said that I had an inflamed mass removed from my colon. The rest of the physical I was passing with flying colors until the AME noticed the infusa-port in my left chest. It is under the skin but leaves a noticeable bump under the scar from inserting it there. He then got a hold of the hospital where I had the surgery and he pulled the Path report. He then promptly told me it was a no-go and that the FAA would be sending me a letter from Oklahoma City.

After reviewing the FAA website regarding Medical Standards I found that Cancer is not among the automatic disqualifiers such as Diabetes or a previous Heart Attack. And after reviewing the other standards I found:

§ 67.313 General medical condition.
The general medical standards for a third-class airman medical certificate are:
(a) No established medical history or clinical diagnosis of diabetes mellitus that requires insulin or any other hypoglycemic drug for control.
(b) No other organic, functional, or structural disease, defect, or limitation that the Federal Air Surgeon, based on the case history and appropriate, qualified medical judgment relating to the condition involved, finds--
(1) Makes the person unable to safely perform the duties or exercise the privileges of the airman certificate applied for or held; or
(2) May reasonably be expected, for the maximum duration of the airman medical certificate applied for or held, to make the person unable to perform those duties or exercise those privileges.
(c) No medication or other treatment that the Federal Air Surgeon, based on the case history and appropriate, qualified medical judgment relating to the medication or other treatment involved, finds--
(1) Makes the person unable to safely perform the duties or exercise the privileges of the airman certificate applied for or held; or
(2) May reasonably be expected, for the maximum duration of the airman medical certificate applied for or held, to make the person unable to perform those duties or exercise those privileges.
Now, I know where my limits are and I don’t ever want to put somebody else in jeopardy especially just for the sake of making a skydive, but I know that this is well within my physical boundaries. What I really would like are some responses and suggestions from anyone who knows about this or has been through something like this.
I am going to send a letter from my Oncologist and talk to the Medical Officers in Oak City and try to get this hammered out ahead of time, and some ideas or direction might keep me from getting indignant. Most anything would be appreciated

Blue Skies and Better Days


MikeTJumps  (D 5957)

Aug 4, 2004, 4:33 AM
Post #2 of 4 (925 views)
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Re: [AJEvans] Coolon Cancer and Tandem Rating [In reply to] Can't Post

One of the big things about joining the AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Associations) is that they have a staff of medical experts that can help you with this issue (dare I say free of additional charge?!), especially in light of the fact that you will not be using it for flying aircraft.

The medical is absolutely required by the manufacturers and the USPA in order for you to exercise the privilege of the Tandem rating.

I wish you the best of luck in complete remission and obtaining your medical certificate.


mailin  (A 46883)

Aug 4, 2004, 12:57 PM
Post #3 of 4 (906 views)
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Re: [AJEvans] Coolon Cancer and Tandem Rating [In reply to] Can't Post

Only having gone through something similar - Oaklahoma City is very slow, and very strict with their 'laws' regarding Class 3 Medicals. Your best bet would be to wait until your treatments are over.

Best of luck - you'll eventually get it (unlike me).


Jen


argon

Aug 4, 2004, 1:16 PM
Post #4 of 4 (900 views)
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Re: [AJEvans] Coolon Cancer and Tandem Rating [In reply to] Can't Post

First and foremost-best wishes and thoughts for a full recovery. Next,getting "indignant" won't accomplish anything. If you are still receiving chemotherapy agents you can rest assured you will NOT get any medical.I went through a substantial spinal fusion surgery(not skydiving related)in 1998. Although fully healed I was denied a 2nd class medical until certification from my nuerosurgeon as well as other consultations were received by my AME as well as Oklahoma City."Dumbed-it down",well,this is a PUBLIC forum and signing the form prior to your exam mentions alot of legal shit about not telling all the facts-blah,blah,blah-enough said about that OK?Worry about getting well-this is probably a battle you will not win. Once you are in remission and no longer on any meds you'll still have to jump through a few hoops but I think you'll have success. For know-just get well. Again best wishes.



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