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Spine/spinal issues and waivers

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Guest cory

Hello, I have a small cyst/tumor on my spine. I have had it for as long as I can remember. I have read the waiver guide, but it didn't answer my questions completely. Does anyone know what the chances are of my passing a class 1 at meps?

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You wont likely pass at MEPS, but they aren't the final say. My situation is Naval, but FWIW I failed MEPS on multiple accounts, but inundated the flight docs with civilian paperwork saying I was good to go. I probably sent them so much paperwork they said ###### it and stamped me as GTG.

I am not an aviator, now, though. I was faced with a decision after a ridiculous training incident - life altering and potentially dangerous surgery or give up flying. I gave it up. It bothers me every day but I know I made the right decision. Do not weigh your options lightly.

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Guest cory

Ok thanks crew dawg! I really appreciate hearing that. Do you know if there is any way to get in contact with an AF flight doc and get his/her opinion on the matter? Also, is thee a limit to the number of waivers one pilot candidate can get? I also had prk, so I would need two.

Edited by cory

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Hey all so I'm currently on casual awaiting pilot training and injured myself recently. It's a very minor compression fracture (10%) of one of my vertebrae and it will be fully healed a month or two prior to my upt start date. I've already passed the FC1 physical. 

Will this injury disqualify or affect me at all? Will I need to get a waiver?

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On 12/11/2016 at 2:05 PM, AnonQ said:

Will this injury disqualify or affect me at all? Will I need to get a waiver?

I found this in the waiver publication guide regarding my type of injury. 

gcZhBRB.png

Can anyone advise what this means? I can't tell if it's an unrestricted waiver for fc1 due to the minor nature of my injury or if it's automatically denied with no chance. The second paragraph seems to imply both?

Does the AF even know, need to know, or will somehow find out as I've already done my FC1?

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Did you find out about this injury at flight med / Air Force hospital?  If you did, then yes, the AF knows.  If you went on your own to a civilian doc (not using Tricare), then no, they don't.  After you answer that question, if the AF does know, you need to consult a flight doc about if a waiver is required.  If the AF doesn't know, well...do you want them to know?

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On 12/19/2016 at 3:51 PM, AnonQ said:

I found this in the waiver publication guide regarding my type of injury. 

[...]

Can anyone advise what this means? I can't tell if it's an unrestricted waiver for fc1 due to the minor nature of my injury or if it's automatically denied with no chance. The second paragraph seems to imply both?

Does the AF even know, need to know, or will somehow find out as I've already done my FC1?

You haven't given enough information about the injury.  What specifically did you fracture and to what degree?  Did you just do X-Ray or MRI?  Have you seen an Orthopedist?

On 12/23/2016 at 11:29 PM, brabus said:

Did you find out about this injury at flight med / Air Force hospital?  If you did, then yes, the AF knows.  If you went on your own to a civilian doc (not using Tricare), then no, they don't.  After you answer that question, if the AF does know, you need to consult a flight doc about if a waiver is required.  If the AF doesn't know, well...do you want them to know?

Though morally ambiguous, pretty much this.  You should report it, and the AFI says you have to, but if you don't, will anyone ever find out and would your Commander enforce administrative action?

The Air Force probably will eventually discover it, but it'll likely be much later with a token finger wagging.

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Hello all. I'm currently awaiting pilot training. I'm set to start UPT in about six weeks, but as of late (approximately the last month or so) I've been having irregular back pain. It's not constant--it comes and goes. On most days it's tolerable and I can go about my daily routine without issue but there have been a few days here recently where it's gotten pretty bad. I've always been a pretty athletic guy. I know what strains and sprains feel like. This isn't soreness; it's definitely pain. I'll get a tingly/numbing sensation that starts in my lower back and goes down through my right leg to the tips of my toes and top of my foot. On these days it's hard to sit or stand for periods longer than an hour (maybe an hour and a half) and it's tough to focus on what I'm doing. Sometimes when I stand up after sitting for a while I'll hear/feel this odd "click" in my lower back. Sometimes it causes pain, sometimes it does not. But when it does, it really bothers me. I called a friend of mine back home who's a doc and he guessed that I have a damaged/bulging disc and or pinched/compressed nerve. (Obviously I'd need an MRI to confirm.)  He made clear I need to get this checked out. I haven't been to Flight Med yet, but I know I'm going to have to go. 

What's the worst case scenario here? What if I have a bugling/torn disc and/or a pinched nerve? I did some research on the clicking noise I'm hearing...it's possibly an early stage of Arthritis? Are these conditions, that with applicable treatment, I'd be able to get a waiver and retain my flying slot? Or do you think I'd be medically DQ'd from flying? If that were to happen, would I be able to stay in the Air Force and work in another AFSC? Or would they try to MEB me out completely? I hope this isn't serious, but I'm trying to be realistic and just ready myself for some potentially bad news.   

Thanks in advance, everyone. I appreciate your guidance and insight. 

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Before you get the military involved AT ALL, go to a good chiropractor; one that will take an Xray of your back/neck, assess, and then make adjustments over a few visits.  I've had pinched nerves before and a few jacked up discs.  I'm a believer in chiropractors now, even though I scoffed them for years.  A few visits is worth some money out of pocket.  If you're not feeling better after 3-4 visits over the course of 3-4 weeks, then look into further options.

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I'm 20 years old and will be applying to UPT boards soon. About a year ago I started having back pain. Not sure what causes it but it comes once every few months and only lasts a few days to a week. Really only hurts to try and bend over and touch my toes.

Not sure how to go about this. Should I try to visit a chiropractor? Or should I try to just ignore it because it probably isn't too severe. Basically just want to minimize my chances of getting DQd and I don't know if going to a chiropractor could increase them. If I went to a chiropractor, I would need to tell them about it right? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

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1 hour ago, Zulu said:

I'm 20 years old and will be applying to UPT boards soon. About a year ago I started having back pain. Not sure what causes it but it comes once every few months and only lasts a few days to a week. Really only hurts to try and bend over and touch my toes.

Not sure how to go about this. Should I try to visit a chiropractor? Or should I try to just ignore it because it probably isn't too severe. Basically just want to minimize my chances of getting DQd and I don't know if going to a chiropractor could increase them. If I went to a chiropractor, I would need to tell them about it right? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

Go see a doctor. Unless the doctor finds something pretty extreme/degenerative, then you will be fine. 

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