FAA makes positive changes for some cardiac conditions

March 18, 2013

Warren Silberman

Warren Silberman

  • Former Manager, FAA Aerospace Medical Certification 
  • Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine 
  • Expert in Aerospace/Preventive Medicine 
  • Pilot since 1986

EDITOR'S NOTE: We were just notified 3/20/13 that the FAA is still working through the final cardiac policy changes. When the formal policy is announced we will notify our members at that time and highlight any changes to this article.

In mid-January 2013 some of the federal air surgeon's cardiology consultants met in Oklahoma City to discuss some of the policies that the FAA requires of airmen who have certain cardiac conditions. As a result of that meeting some favorable changes have been instituted.

Currently an airman who has coronary artery bypass grafting, which is a surgical procedure that “bypasses” obstructed heart arteries with veins taken from one's legs, requires a six-month “disqualification” period prior to the airman requesting a special issuance (waiver). The purpose of the down time is for healing and observation in case of complications or further obstruction of the bypassed arteries. This policy will continue.

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