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Heart and Circulatory System

Cardiovascular Evaluation Specifications

Cardiovascular Evaluation

These specifications have been developed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to determine an applicant's eligibility for airman medical certification. Standardization of examination methods and reporting is essential to provide sufficient basis for making this determination and the prompt processing of applications. This cardiovascular evaluation, therefore, must be reported in sufficient detail to permit a clear and objective evaluation of the cardiovascular disorder(s) with emphasis on the degree of functional capacity, recovery and prognosis. Preferably, it should be performed by a physician specializing in internal medicine or cardiology. As a minimum, the evaluation must include:

  1. Medical History. Particular reference should be given to cardiovascular abnormalities (cerebral, visceral, and/or peripheral). A statement must be included as to whether medications are currently or have been recently used, and, if so, the type, purpose, dosage, duration of use, and other therapy is required. In addition, any history of hypertension must be fully developed, and if thiazide diuretics are being taken, values for serum potassium should be reported. A comment should be included on any important or unusual dietary programs.
  2. Family, Personal, and Social History. A statement of the ages and health status of parents and siblings is necessary; if deceased, age at death and cause should be included. Also, an indication of whether any near blood relative has had heart attacks, hypertension, diabetes, or known disorders of lipid metabolism must be provided. Smoking, drinking, and recreational habits of the applicant are pertinent, as well as whether a program of physical fitness is being maintained. Comments on the level of physical activities, functional limitations, and occupational and avocational pursuits are essential.
  3. Records of Previous Medical Care. If not previously furnished to the FAA, a copy of pertinent hospital records, as well as outpatient treatment records, with clinical data, x-ray and laboratory observations, and originals or good copies of all ECG tracings, should be provided. Detailed reports of surgical procedures, cerebral and coronary arteriography, and other diagnostic studies are necessary.
  4. General Physical Examination. A brief description of any comment-worthy personal characteristics: height; weight; representative blood pressure readings in both arms; funduscopic examination of retinal arteries; condition of peripheral arteries; carotid artery ascultation; heart size; rate, rhythm, and description of murmurs (location, intensity, timing, and opinion as to significance) and other substantive findings should be provided.
  5. Laboratory Data. As a minimum, must include actual values of: 
    1. Blood chemistries (values of normal laboratory ranges).
      1. Serum cholesterol and triglycerides after 12-to-16 hour fast.
      2. Fasting blood sugar. If the fasting blood glucose is elevated, a report of hemoglobin A1C may be needed.

How/Where to Submit to the FAA

Helps you find the contact information for submitting your medical records.

Updated May 2021