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FAA Medical Support for Pilots and AME's

 

Flight Fitness | Blood Pressure

Pilots with a diagnosis of hypertension or those on medication to control blood pressure must provide a detailed cardiovascular evaluation for FAA consideration.  While the FAA has no absolute requirements, the FAA requires a current status explanatory narrative and whatever lab-work which the treating physician required to establish his/her position.  In most cases, the treating physician must obtain lab-work which traditionally has been required by the FAA as this is a standard of medical care. 

While aviation medical examiners may defer lower values, the FAA disqualifies pilots with a systolic (higher number) blood pressure at or above 155 or a diastolic (lower number) pressure at or above 95.

          
 Blood Pressure Optimal  Normal  High Normal  Hypertension  FAA Limit
 Systolic (top #) <120 <130 130-139 140 or higher 155 or higher
 Diastolic < 80 < 85  85-90  90 or higher   95 or higher
           

If your blood pressure is elevated, speak with your physician about how to reduce your blood pressure.  It may be possible to reduce your blood pressure by limiting the sodium (salt) in your diet, losing weight if overweight, taking medication, limiting your alcohol intake and/or increasing your physical activity.

Although reducing your blood pressure by lifestyle modification is preferred, it may be best to utilize medication initially to reduce the risk for arterial damage and stroke.  Eventually exercise and diet may permit you to discontinue the medication.

FAA Certification - FAA approved medications for hypertension

 

Other Cardiovascular Issues  |  FAA Standards & Protocols

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Updated 3/15/2014                                                               

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