Forums: Skydiving: Instructors:
epilepsy

 


wsinsel  (D 21183)

Aug 12, 2005, 9:29 AM
Post #1 of 8 (4961 views)
Shortcut
epilepsy Can't Post

  In your opinions should an epileptic do tandems? What would you do if you knew it was happening?

Opinions...........


skydog  (D 567)

Aug 12, 2005, 9:42 AM
Post #2 of 8 (4941 views)
Shortcut
Re: [wsinsel] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

A while ago I would have said sure, so long as they were stable on their meds.

But having watched a blind guy (I know not the same disability, but had the same erratic body movements) completely freak out, and seeing what could happen would cause me concern if the movements were involuntary.

So, basically my answer would be no.

Bryn


tombuch  (D 8514)

Aug 12, 2005, 9:45 AM
Post #3 of 8 (4938 views)
Shortcut
Re: [wsinsel] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

I have no problem with it for a student, but of course the instructor should know about the issue and understand epilespy, and have a plan to deal with an attack.

I have a big problem if it is an instructor. In the United States the USPA BSR's require all tandem instructors to have an FAA class III medical certificate or equivalent. Epilepsy is almost always disqualifing.

See the following from the AOPA web site http://flighttraining.aopa.org/...al_certification.cfm:

...Neurologic cases, too, pose some of the more difficult certification decisions for the FAA. Epilepsy and disturbances of consciousness or transient loss of control of nervous system function without satisfactory medical explanation of the cause are disqualifying. A one-time-only seizure with an otherwise normal neurological evaluation can be favorably reconsidered if at least four years have passed since the seizure and there has been no anticonvulsant drug therapy for at least two years.
A history of multiple seizures, but no diagnosis of epilepsy, may be considered for certification only if there has been at least a 10-year period since the last seizure and at least three years have passed since anticonvulsant medication was used. A history of epilepsy may be considered only after there have been no seizures and no anticonvulsant medication usage for the last 10 years.


Even without the requirement for an FAA medical (such as at a non-USPA dropzone), doing tandems with epilepsy is is a bad idea.

If I knew about the issue I'd either discuss it directly with the tandem instructor, or ask an S&TA to discuss it with him and to follow up with USPA. This is a case where the life of a student is at risk, and I believe an S&TA should evaluate the situation and if the instructor really has epilepsy, should follow through with USPA.
.


Ugali  (C 5354)

Aug 14, 2005, 10:09 PM
Post #4 of 8 (4816 views)
Shortcut
Re: [wsinsel] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

met a dude who had to knock this guy out cos he was making him dangerously unstable when he had the fit


peregrinerose  (D 28983)

Aug 16, 2005, 11:41 AM
Post #5 of 8 (4737 views)
Shortcut
Re: [wsinsel] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm not an instructor of any form (obviously, with my brand new B license in hand!), but I do have a seizure disorder.

'Epilepsy' is an incredibly broad term and tells you absolutely nothing about the person's ability to do a tandem or any other jump. Grand mal seizures (the motor kind) is only one type of seizure. Most seizures are not grand mal. Some don't even lose consciousness, just sort of space out a bit.

If you are concerned, ask the student to bring in a note from the neuro/family doc stating they are stable on meds, or do not have grand mal seizures. If possible, find out what triggers the seizures (if anything), what time of day they occur (if there is a trend, schedule tandems accordingly). Ask them if they get an 'aura' or anything that would signal an upcoming seizure, and make sure they've taken their meds as prescribed lately.

If someone told me that someone with a seizure disorder should not be jumping out of airplanes, I'd be one bummed out camper (well, my neuro told me not to do it, but he thinks skydiving in general is idiocy). I haven't had a seizure in a year and started jumping about 9 months ago. I have never lost consciousness with a seizure anyway, I could have one right in front of you and you'd never know it was happening. But that is just me, and this should really be decided on a case by case basis.

Jen


ECVZZ  (A License)

Aug 17, 2005, 9:21 AM
Post #6 of 8 (4706 views)
Shortcut
Re: [skydog] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
having watched a blind guy....I know not the same disability, but had the same erratic body movements

Sorry, but not even close to a Grand Mal seizure.CrazyCrazy


skydog  (D 567)

Aug 20, 2005, 2:59 AM
Post #7 of 8 (4648 views)
Shortcut
Re: [ECVZZ] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
having watched a blind guy....I know not the same disability, but had the same erratic body movements

Sorry, but not even close to a Grand Mal seizure.CrazyCrazy

Never said it was the same.

More an indication that erratic movement under a tandem is not a good idea.

So unless you have an idea or suggestion about the question then please reply to that.

Bryn


ECVZZ  (A License)

Aug 21, 2005, 11:32 AM
Post #8 of 8 (4626 views)
Shortcut
Re: [skydog] epilepsy [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
More an indication that erratic movement under a tandem is not a good idea.

No argument here.

Quote:
have an idea or suggestion about the question

No prob...If the epileptic in question is controlled with meds and hasn't had a Grand Mal for the last year or so, knows their triggers well, and has jumped previously, then it's a judgment call for the TM imo.

If there are no previous skydives (no guarantee it won't trigger a seizure), or if the person has recently experienced a Grand Mal, then my opinion would be no, the person shouldn't be allowed to jump.

Quote:
not the same disability, but had the same erratic body movements(emphasis added)


That's where you said it was the same type of erratic movement. It's not the same. No TI should go into a jump with an epileptic thinking they're even remotely similar.

I have a little experience skydiving and no instructor ratings at all, but I do have a shitload of experience with epilepsy both personally and (in a former life) professionally.



Forums : Skydiving : Instructors

 


Search for (options)