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4 Answers

Question About Rules Regarding Flying After an Injury

Asked by: 2063 views Commercial Pilot, FAA Regulations, General Aviation

About 2 months ago, I was involved in an ATV accident that caused me to shatter my nose and break my back by fracturing 5 vertebrae.  My spine doc (Also happens to be a pilot/aircraft owner; awesome coincidnece.) has grounded me until further notice, whcih should be early June.  If there are things in my medical records whish would have to be reported on my medical application, do I need to ground myself for regulation purposes, even if my spine doctor says I'm physicall fine to fly?  The items that wil be reported on the 8500-8 are:

18(c) - Unconsiousness for any reason

18(u) - Admission to hospital

18(x) - Other illness, disability, or surgey (Not actual surgery, but that's what's in my records.  It was actually just moving my shattered nose to straighten it out.)

And list the visits to medical proffessionals due to the accident.


I'm already working on getting copies of the related medical records, first responder reports, and hospital discharge report for my AME to look over, but that could take quite a while, but I really need to get flying again.  So, am I able to start flying as soon as my doc says it's o.k., or do those things which will be reported on my next medical (listed above) be immediate grounding issues?


Thanks for your help!  -Jim

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4 Answers

  1. John D. Collins on May 24, 2013

    Sorry about your accident. I strongly recommend you contact Dr. Bruce Chien for his advice. He is the foremost expert on medical issues and is a Senior AME. He is the medical moderator on the AOPA Forum, a pilot, and CFI. All he does is difficult medicals. He is excellent and very reasonable in price.

    His contact information is:


    Physical Address: 1320 W. Bird Blvd, Peoria, IL 61615
    Phone: 309-689-5242
    Fax: 309-691-8973 (fax); 309-691-3452 (secondary fax)
    Email: aeromedicaldoc@comcast.net

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  2. MaggotCFII on May 24, 2013

    Suggest you take a look/read of the January/February 2013, FAA Safety Briefing Magazine.

    That issue has considerable info on the medical process.

    Here is the link:


    Being proactive is the best approach. My AME picks up the phone, calls the regional
    guy, finds out what is needed – before the medical begins – that way one is ahead of things. And you can usually start be calling your AME.

    If your AME is a good guy and not a “hostile-I’m doing you a favor for even seeing you” guy, then hopefully your outcome will be successful – if it’s the later sort of guy, find a new AME.

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  3. Jim F. on May 27, 2013

    Thanks for the suggestion John. I acutally know Bruce an have talked to him, as well as several other AMEs and a couple aviation lawyers that I know, and I’m getting different info from Bruce that all the others professionals are saying is wrong. I’m working on it with several people, but I just wanted to post here to get some other people’s input.

    Thanks for that link Maggot, great info there. I’m actually in the process of switching AMEs with all this going on, because my previous one was the “hostile-I’m doing you a favor for even seeing you” kind of guy. I’m definitely being pro-active here. Luckily I don’t need my next medical until about February, but if I’m gonna be grounded by the FAA, then i need to know as soon as possible o I can get re-certified quickly, so I can get back to work flying.

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  4. stephanie valentine on Jun 09, 2013

    fracured my anckle can i still fly have plaster on my foot, on tablets fir high blood pressure, have astma, on inhayler and on tablets for thoride

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