Practice for your FAA Medical?
years back David Hale, a pilot and Exercise Physiologist who practices in Coeur d'Alene,
Idaho, realized he might be able to help out a friend and fellow Bonanza pilot. The friend
had recently undergone quadruple bypass surgery and had contemplated quitting flying
altogether in the face of what he figured were impossible odds against passing an FAA
medical exam. Hale didnt believe the odds; he evaluated his friend's health and put
him on a strict exercise regime.
After a couple of months, his buddy
went into the AME armed with treadmill tapes showing his good state of heart-health, and a
relatively short time later, he was back in the left seat.
As it turned out, it wasn't an
isolated case; Hale found that many of his pilot friends were struggling with FAA medical
issues, so he expanded his practice and started Pilot Medical Solutions, a program with
the dual objectives of helping pilots get in shape and assisting them in negotiating the
Hale says that while theres
little one can do for pilots with permanently disqualifying medical conditions, hes
found such cases to be the exception, and that many pilots can regain their FAA medical
certificate simply by tackling the problem with an appropriate plan of action. In some
cases, Hale says, the solution might be as simple as helping a client find a medication
the FAA approves of. In other cases, it might require the client to start a serious
fitness program and begin eating right.
To get things started, Hale gives the
client an extensive, confidential fitness evaluation, including electrocardiograph
analysis, blood work, exercise stress testing, and metabolic function evaluation. The case
is then reviewed by an AME without knowledge of the client's identity. If necessary, Hale
refers his client to an aviation lawyer specializing in medical matters.
For more information, call
FLYING/FEBRUARY 1997 31
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