Forums: Community: Skydivers with Disabilities:
Diabetes & Skydiving

 


1960darrenh  (Student)

Aug 13, 2008, 3:04 PM
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Diabetes & Skydiving Can't Post

Hi all.

I recently did a tandem skydive for charity. I loved it so much that I am now hooked and want to do either the AFF or RAPS Course. The problem is, that I have Type 1 Diabetes (Insulin Dependant) and realise this could cause a problem. My Diabetes is extremely well controlled and can see no reason why I would be any more risk than anybody else. I have however been told by somebody that the BPA WILL NOT let me fly and if they did, I would have restrictions imposed on me. However I have found out that somebody called Tony Goodman (Silver Stars CCI) has Type 1 Diabetes and he is a pro and does not have any restrictions (that I know of anyway) Does anyone else have Diabetes or could advise me on what to do?UnsureUnsureUnsure


pjc  (D 104521)

Aug 13, 2008, 10:34 PM
Post #2 of 20 (4841 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Darren,

My Bro is type 1 so I know the restrictions that you face. In a nutshell, if you are under 40 - you sign a self declaration of fitness to paracute. If you are over 40 a doctor must sign you off. On the self dec you are signing to say you do not have diabetes so technically you cannot sign. So your only chance is the doctor. In the docs notes it states that diabetes will "normally" make a candidate unfit although there are some exceptions. http://www.bpa.org.uk/...n%20of%20Fitness.pdf
I would speak to John Carter the BPA doctor.

Alternatively, I think the view on diabetes is more relaxed in the States, so maybe you could do a course there and get a USPA licence and jump in Spain (Lots of brits do this as they are fed up with BPA regs and weather so they head off to spain 1 weekend a month and cram a bunch of jumps in SmileSmile)


(This post was edited by pjc on Aug 13, 2008, 10:48 PM)


1960darrenh  (Student)

Aug 14, 2008, 12:38 AM
Post #3 of 20 (4834 views)
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Re: [pjc] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi.

Is your brother actually a skydiver? if so, what are the restriction put on him?

As to going to the US to do the jumps well I cant afford to do that and then on top of that I cant afford to keep going to to Spain either.

I have just phoned Dr carter's Surgery and he is on leave until next week so will speak to him then.

By the sounds of it, my idea of doing this course is over!


(This post was edited by 1960darrenh on Aug 14, 2008, 12:44 AM)


craivn  (D 26524)

Aug 15, 2008, 8:48 AM
Post #4 of 20 (4805 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi,

I've had type 1 diabetes since the age of 18 (I'm 35 now), and always had good control of it (A1C in 6.2 range). I've been jumping for 8 years and have over 1300 jump to date. I am an AFF instructor with about 400 student jumps, been on record jumps, competitions, big ways, DEMOs and many other exciting low and high profile jumps.

I'm also a private pilot with a 3rd class medical certificate issued by FAA under medical exception rule of Part 67. (You don't actually need FAA medical unless you are a tandem instructor).

Bottom line - if you're in good health, and control your diabetes well (i.e. monitor your sugar, eat properly, don't miss shots) - you have a greed light in the sport!!! Email if you have more specific questions.

Ilya


1960darrenh  (Student)

Aug 15, 2008, 10:10 AM
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Re: [craivn] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

 
It's good to hear you can still jump with your condition. However, you are lucky because they seem more relaxed about it over there in the US. Unfortunately I live in the UK and the rules here are not quite so accomodating.





In reply to:
Hi,

I've had type 1 diabetes since the age of 18 (I'm 35 now), and always had good control of it (A1C in 6.2 range). I've been jumping for 8 years and have over 1300 jump to date. I am an AFF instructor with about 400 student jumps, been on record jumps, competitions, big ways, DEMOs and many other exciting low and high profile jumps.

I'm also a private pilot with a 3rd class medical certificate issued by FAA under medical exception rule of Part 67. (You don't actually need FAA medical unless you are a tandem instructor).

Bottom line - if you're in good health, and control your diabetes well (i.e. monitor your sugar, eat properly, don't miss shots) - you have a greed light in the sport!!! Email if you have more specific questions.

Ilya


craivn  (D 26524)

Aug 18, 2008, 1:26 PM
Post #6 of 20 (4773 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

After reading more about BPA rules, I undersand the picture a little better. Since they don't have their regulations book posted online, I second someone's earlier suggestion for you to talk to someone at BPA first.

Also, I looked up info on Civil Aviation Authority (British equivalent of FAA in the US), and like FAA, they do issue restricted medical certificates to people with insulin-dependent diabetes. You can go to this website, and then click on Diabetes link. http://www.caa.co.uk/default.aspx?catid=49&pagetype=90&pageid=7099

As I mentioned, I got my 3rd Class Medical from FAA, which basically consisted of a standard 3rd class medical exam, plus a statement from my diabetes-treating doctor, latest 4 results of my Hemoglobin A1C, and a note from an eye doc, stating that I don't have any retina problems. If you can get even a restricted Private Pilot Medical from CAA, I doubt that your skydiving organization will give continue to impose obstacles between you and the freefall (again, you'll need to check with BPA on that as well).

Feel free to send me a private message, if you have more detailed questions about this subject, or just post your progress here, as I'm anxious to contribute in any way I can to increase the world's skydivers' count!

Blue skies

P.S. General info on the Private Pilot medical and contact info can be found here http://www.caa.co.uk/default.aspx?catid=49&pagetype=90&pageid=528


beginnerr

Oct 12, 2008, 2:47 PM
Post #7 of 20 (4495 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Hi all.

I recently did a tandem skydive for charity. I loved it so much that I am now hooked and want to do either the AFF or RAPS Course. The problem is, that I have Type 1 Diabetes (Insulin Dependant) and realise this could cause a problem. My Diabetes is extremely well controlled and can see no reason why I would be any more risk than anybody else. I have however been told by somebody that the BPA WILL NOT let me fly and if they did, I would have restrictions imposed on me. However I have found out that somebody called Tony Goodman (Silver Stars CCI) has Type 1 Diabetes and he is a pro and does not have any restrictions (that I know of anyway) Does anyone else have Diabetes or could advise me on what to do?UnsureUnsureUnsure


Hi,

I have excatly the same problem... (I have 1 type diabetes -in pretty good control and I want to jump in UK) but I have aready done 8 jumps (RAPS) this summer - outside the UK - I'm not british citizen. Diabetes in not a problem for me to jump and shouldn't be for others - simplyfy before jump check your sugar level eventualy eat sth. - That all. Nowadays is pretty simple.

In BPA they told me that I should call to dr carter's Surgery. Did you speak with him? and what did he said?
Please let me know.

P.S. DIABETES IN NOT A EPILEPSY! We know how to the best protect your selfs.

Blue skies,
Martin


(This post was edited by beginnerr on Oct 12, 2008, 2:49 PM)


KeithMeller

Apr 27, 2009, 5:51 PM
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Darrehh ?,

I am a type 1 diabetic a started skydiving ~11 years after I found out. I have jumped all around the country and said I was diabetic on every release form I had to sigjn. I have never been asked about it which tells me that the DZ's don't read the release forms. I have competed at the USPA Nationals for 2 years, trained 10 jumps/day and only had a couple times when my blood sugar got low enough to notice. and I ate as soon as I got down. So I would say go for it. Any questions, keithmeller@yahoo.com.

Blue Skys,

Keith


humanflite  (D 99999)

Apr 28, 2009, 4:24 PM
Post #9 of 20 (4055 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Hi.

Is your brother actually a skydiver? if so, what are the restriction put on him?

As to going to the US to do the jumps well I cant afford to do that and then on top of that I cant afford to keep going to to Spain either.

I have just phoned Dr carter's Surgery and he is on leave until next week so will speak to him then.

By the sounds of it, my idea of doing this course is over!

Rubbish!!!

Dont give up.

A guy recently came through a DZ I visit sometimes (UK)to do AFF and he has Type 1 diabetes, insulin dependant.

he is over 40 and his own GP signed him off as fit to skydive. Basically, if you have not had any 'episodes' (as in where you pass out or go hypo or hyper iirc??) in the last 3 years or so then a friendly doctor should sign you off.

You could even pay for a consultation with a private doctor (an aviation doc) who will assess you and sign you off more happily than your average whuffo GP who thinks 'plunging to the earth' is a sure fire way to die etc etc yada yada yada Wink


(This post was edited by humanflite on Apr 28, 2009, 4:25 PM)


baum

Jun 2, 2009, 10:11 AM
Post #10 of 20 (3928 views)
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Re: [humanflite] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

I just did my first Tandom jump last week. I am a type 1 diabetic. I am on insulin pump treatment. When signing the release form i asked the guy what i should do. he said to just leave it blank if i am in control of it (which i am). I simply tested my BG before the jump. right before i got into the plane i took my pump off (causing my bg to go a little high, but only by about 20 points from pre flight check and after).


antonwestman  (D 474)

Apr 29, 2011, 4:56 AM
Post #11 of 20 (3217 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

My name is Anton Westman and I am a Swedish skydiver and medical doctor. We are discussing diabetes and skydiving in my country right now and I would like to invite anyone with experience, MDs, nurses, or persons with diabetes, to share their knowledge and opinions.

In December 2010, a symposium about diabetes and risk sports was held at the annual general meeting of the Swedish Society of Medicine. The last years have seen improvements in therapies and monitoring technologies and the question was raised at the symposium whether people with type 1 diabetes may safely participate in some aerial activities. Skydiving was mentioned in particular and patient group representatives present at the symposium expressed a specific desire for skydiving participation. During the closing panel debate, an assembly of representatives from various fields of aviation and medicine recommended that a select group of people with insulin-dependent diabetes should be allowed to participate in skydiving under controlled forms.

Nothing would make me happier than to open the sky to people who want to jump but have previously been excluded in Sweden and several other countries. However, given the risk and present rules and regulations, this needs to be done with caution. If we are to do this under controlled forms, I am also thinking that perhaps we could contribute to the sport internationally, and try to propose some simple guidelines for people with insulin-dependent diabetes to safely participate in skydiving.

I expect some to call it madness to say that people with type 1 diabetes may safely participate in skydiving, and others to call it overly prohibitive to exclude this group of people from this sport. I would really welcome all opinions.

With best regards

Anton Westman, Sweden.


GLIDEANGLE  (D 30292)

Apr 29, 2011, 7:40 PM
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Re: [antonwestman] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Dr. Westman:

You are not accepting PMs.

I know two jumpers with Type 1 DM. Neither of them frequents DZ.com.

One has several thousand jumps and is an AFF instructor. The other is a relatively inexperienced jumper.

Please provide your contact information and I will do my best to direct them to contact you.


antonwestman  (D 474)

Apr 30, 2011, 2:12 AM
Post #13 of 20 (3185 views)
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Re: [GLIDEANGLE] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

My contact data are:

Anton Westman
Department of Surgical and Perioperative Sciences
Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care
Umea University Hospital
901 85 Umea
Sweden
Work phone: +46 90 785 0000
Private GSM: +46 702 202 557
E-mail: anton@worldwidewestman.com

With best regards

Anton Westman.


Premier rwieder  (C 32349)

Dec 14, 2011, 6:22 AM
Post #14 of 20 (2824 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
It's good to hear you can still jump with your condition. However, you are lucky because they seem more relaxed about it over there in the US. Unfortunately I live in the UK and the rules here are not quite so accomodating.

Why did you even disclose this to the DZ? It sounds like you have the situation well in hand.


Snowwhite

Dec 14, 2011, 9:14 AM
Post #15 of 20 (2811 views)
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Re: [rwieder] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
It's good to hear you can still jump with your condition. However, you are lucky because they seem more relaxed about it over there in the US. Unfortunately I live in the UK and the rules here are not quite so accomodating.

Why did you even disclose this to the DZ? It sounds like you have the situation well in hand.

I am concerned about this statement and one that another poster said about "leaving the line blank" ie: not disclosing the info.

I was in a position at the WFFC to have been contacted when people had medical problems at the dz, and the waiver would need to be pulled to send to the hospital with the jumper. Understand that MANY MANY people went to the hospital for NON JUMPING related things. Like falling off of the back of a golf cart, consuming too much alcohol, HEAT prostration. In any of these cases, it was imperitive for me to tell the hospital that this person is a diabetic, and sugar can be an issue.
I too am a diabetic. Don't hide the information from your dz, they need to know, in case you can't inform someone.


deltron80  (A License)

Dec 14, 2011, 12:04 PM
Post #16 of 20 (2798 views)
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Re: [1960darrenh] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

It doesn't seem fair to exclude diabetics from skydiving...If a person actually thinks they may be incapacitated they will likely choose not to jump on their own. Anyone can suffer a spontaneous medical episode during a skydive. It's part of the risk and something to be mitigated by having a large reserve and an AAD, not a reason not to jump... It would be a shame if someone felt they had to hide their illness just to be able to jump.


tmccann  (A 61009)

Dec 15, 2011, 4:14 PM
Post #17 of 20 (2761 views)
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Re: [Snowwhite] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Really good point. I always make note of my diabetes on my forms, but this made me think that I might want to get a medic-alert bracelet. At first I was thinking of sewing one onto the strap of my alti, so it wouldn't be a snag hazard, but it could make more sense to wear it on something I don't take off after jumping. Any up-jumpers with advice in this regard?


Snowwhite

Dec 16, 2011, 12:01 PM
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Re: [tmccann] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

Because I don't wear jewelry (yea, I know, what girl doesn't wear jewelry?!) I have considered getting a tat with it right where the bracelet would be, if I had one. The reason for that is because it would be the first most natural place for a medic to look.


Premier rwieder  (C 32349)

Dec 18, 2011, 1:55 PM
Post #19 of 20 (2709 views)
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Re: [Snowwhite] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

That's a great idea!!


redramdriver  (C License)

Jan 28, 2012, 11:02 AM
Post #20 of 20 (2568 views)
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Re: [Snowwhite] Diabetes & Skydiving [In reply to] Can't Post

I also don't wear anything indicating that I'm a diabetic. I am a type II, and even though I take my diet and medicine, I would never try to hide it. I fill in the blanks, state that I am a diabetic, and each time have been asked about it. I self monitor (of course) and jump with a friend most of the time who is a type I. We watch each other...and sometimes give each other a reminder to get something to eat, hydrate, and check! Thank you for flying with One Way, and enjoy your decent!



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