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Merged Keratoconus thread

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Merged Keratoconus thread

Old 5th Sep 2010, 01:28
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please help me I Cant find my condition.

Hi there! well im new in this forum and let me introduce myself, Im Luis, I live in United States,mexican, 16 y.o. ,permanent resident in the US and I love aviation, Ive been reading pprune many years ago, but never decided to be part of this, nevertheless Im now here and Im expecting to have fun and learning things about aviation, thats why Im gonna ask for some help. I know theres some much time lefting before I start flight trainig but i want to be prepared.

Well, firstable, I live in sugar grove IL, near aurora and chicago, since I have concience, I always wanted to be a commercial pilot, I trully love aviation, I think Im taking this passion in my blood, but there are some little problems.

firstable, the horrific HEALTH ISSUES! one year ago, I went to my ofphalmologist, but SURPRISE, he diagnosed me with KERATOCONUS, in both eyes, but in the right one, the disease was very advanced (KC level 3) but I didnt have hazes or injuries in my chornea, except for the classical striations., inmediately, my doctor proposed me to take the Crosslinking surgery (C3-R CXL) in order to stop the chorneal deformation, so I took the desicion to take the surgery in mexico, wich I think, was the best decision I made. Well, after the surgery i went to a contactologist (a doctor who is specialized in keratoconus an contact lenses adaptation) and prescribed me Gas permeable rigid lenses, wich really fit m and are very comfortable ima ble to use them for 14 hrs., so, In my left eye i reached more than 20/20, but in my right eye just 20/25, both eyes 20/20+. then I fell in an emotional crysis and I cant get out of it, now, my dctor told me that I was able to reach 20/20 in both eyes separately with visual therapy, I think this are good news, actually im in the process of the final adjustments of my lenses an expecting directions of taking the visula therapy or other, I really hope I can reach 20/20 with my 20/25 eye, that is the main problem. nowadays I was like crazy reading forums, visiting the FAA webpage, asking people in order to have some info about how my condition would affect my dreams to become an airline pilot but nothing. I just know that i have to have 20/20 in both eyes, but they dont say nothing about keratoconus, Can I be an airline pilot with this disease? can i approve my first class medical exam with this condition, would it limitate my dreams, my career? Im so confused an walking in the dark because of this disease, i fell that all my chances of being a pilot are falling down. but Im waiting for a haze of light, Im a good student and I think it can help me, I dont drink, I dont smoke, I dont have diabetes, hearing problems. Im healthy except for this. My contactologist says that she thinks this might not be a problem in flying but she doesnt knows nothing of aviation.

2. LEGAL ISUUES, can I be an airline pilot if Im mexican but Im legally a permanent resident in the US? I ask this because in mexico, you have to be born-mexican in order to fly or control airspace.

3.SCHOOLS? I was thinking in American flyers Chicago, some pople say that its schools are good, in fact I know a friend of mine who has his brother working in Aeromexico Connect (E-145 and E-190 A/Cs) what kind of school would you recommend me and wich is the cost approximately?

4.SCHOLARSHIPS. Is there a chance to get a scholarship?

Well then thank you for your help and pardon me if this is bothering, but I think its better to get some knowledge taha keeping me all my boubts.
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Old 5th Sep 2010, 07:16
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Little further down the pages:
http://www.pprune.org/medical-health...ratoconus.html
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Old 21st Sep 2010, 19:37
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The FAA does not disqualify for Keratoconus. If you are a legal resident but a Mexican citizen, you can still fly for an airline in the US.

Concerning the Keratoconus, the FAA will test you to make sure that you can see 20/40, with OR without correction. They dont really care if you wear glasses or contacts or not, just that you can see 20/40 IN EACH EYE SEPARATELY.

Next, they dont actually have to know that you have Keratoconus. Im not advocating anything but you can PM me if you have further questions. I would ask the doctors who did your C3R if the C3R procedure can be detected by a slit lamp.

As far as the training, go to a local place near your home and shop around and take a look at the airplanes, talk to the owner and the people who work there and the other students and see what place works best for you. no need to go to a flying academy or anything like that. In the US, the airlines dont care where you got your training, they care if you have lots of hours, the right personality, and that you can fly and make the right decisions. If one of those flying academy places is for you, then by all means go to one, but pick a place that fits you. most importantly, DONT PAY UPFRONT.

As far as scholarships, they dont exist in aviation in the US for the most part. There are some rare scholarships out there like the Daedalian Scholarship which are given to Air Force cadets who are exceptional but it is rare and hard to come by.

The approximate cost will vary depending where you go, but you can figure that if you are going to get your Commercial/Instrument Single engine and Multi Engine Airplane Land ratings, it will cost you close to $45,000 to $60,000 depending where you get your training and how efficient you are/motivated.

Best of luck.

Last edited by zondaracer; 21st Sep 2010 at 19:43. Reason: to add
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Old 23rd Sep 2010, 12:52
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Merged Keratoconus thread

As there is some renewed interest in the topic, we'll try to put it all in here.
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Old 5th Jan 2011, 17:54
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Exclamation Keratoconus

Hi guys, sorry for disturbing again for after so many years, i've been diagnosed with keratoconus on my both eyes as i m having almost the similar case with Gerald 83, i am going for the Cross-Linking surgery, and my doc told me that even if i went for the surgery and i would still not able to proceed for my pilot application, this was so sad until i found this forum, my question is, am i still able to apply after my cross linking surgery? is there any proof that i need to convince the doctor? Thanks in advance ..
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Old 6th Jan 2011, 07:43
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Satoshi13
though ICAO manual does not speak of correction of keratoconus, JAR manual categorically says that during the early stages, keratoconus may be treated with spectacles, and later with contact lenses. The surgery is the final resort.

However, before undergoing surgery (when you may have relief either with spectacles or Contact Lens), please contact your Aviation Medical Examiner or the Malaysian Civil Aviation Authority to seek clarifications.
IMHO, if spectacles/Contact Lens assure you aviation fitness, why undergo surgery?
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Old 7th Jan 2011, 06:36
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Angry

AvMedIn, Thanks bro, my situation here in my country is different, i am from Malaysia, the panel doctor from the DCA apartment here doesnt allow keratoconus patient to wears corrective lenses such as RGP, i was told that it is a condition where it will become even worst. i had no choice so i ve decided to go for the surgery.. kinda sad ... i hope my vision will be improve or maybe alt least maintain and i will try again.

i've also called all the ophthalmologist specialist in DCA Malaysia, and they said that they never accept any application that has Keratoconus, so i had no choice but doing alot of research from the internet and i've been to one of the hospital here and the doctor clarifies me that its better i go for the surgery. as my left eye is KK3 which i have a high astig and my right eye has a good vision in KK2. however, i've made an appointment to the surgery on next week Wednesday 12.1.2011, i have no idea what can i do right now, as i ask the DCA doctor again, if i went for the Cross Linking surgery, would i still able to apply for the application? well, he told me they really never accept anyone with this sickness, but he says maybe i could try.. and the doctor from the hospital says that, i will not good enough to apply anymore after the surgery, as he told me that my eyes will be very sensitive with glares and lights at night. my feelings now is so unexplainable ... i don't know what to do and no one could give me any advice ... i also told them that FFA approves application with Keratoconus, but do we apply it in Malaysia? as the doctor told me that UK and US is different with Malaysia, where there's alot of application who applies for PPL so they have to accept the patient with it, but in Malaysia there's not much people apply for pilot courses for PPL, so they are being more strict than any others.

EASA = Applicants with keratoconus may be considered for a fit assessment if the visual requirements are met with the use of corrective lenses and periodic review is undertaken by an ophthalmologist.

This is weird why the DCA doesn't accept this which i can simply fit for the corrective lenses? they insist they don't accept applicant just with keratoconus. I am going to the surgery soon, should i proceed? i ve told that after Cross linking i might having a difficulties of glares at night. since the DCA don't want to approve me or maybe should i go for the surgery and hopefully if my condition is going to gets better? i m definitely lost
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Old 11th Jun 2011, 19:50
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Keratoconus

All
Anyone has tried the collagene Cross linking and got his JAA medical initial Class 1?
Cheers
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Old 11th Jun 2011, 21:56
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Kaptn, I might be able to give you some info. I didn't have crosslinking done but still got a JAA class 1.

What is your current eyesight? How were you diagnosed? Do you wear corrective lenses/RGPs? What is the thickness of your corneas?
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Old 23rd Jul 2011, 17:50
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Has there been any developments with this yet for JAA medicals?

I got cross linking and mild laser surgery on my left eye (right eye is un affected by Keratoconus) over 2.5 years ago in the Wellington eye clinic in Dublin.

Have no need for glasses or contacts and my eyesight in the affected eye has remained the same since treatment. Vision was greatly improved after surgery. Best money i ever spent

Would love nothing more than to qualify for an initial class 1 medical with it.
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 22:05
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Cholesterol and Kerataconus

I just got my initial CAA Class 1 Medical certificate a few weeks ago.
However i recieved some scary news.

The not so scary one was that I have high cholesterol. The only worrying this is that I'm 18, however I personally feel my diet isn't that bad.

The main fear is off a mild stage of Kerataconus..(thinning of the Cornea). Has anyone got an insight into this? I've been advised to visit an opthamologist to get a treatment called CXL Crosslinking (a form of laser eye surgery)

Shocking, and I'm just eighteen. It's a good thing I went for the test before applying to any FTO's to commence training!

Thanks for any advice in advance
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Old 18th Apr 2012, 12:11
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Hi all,

After completing my degree at Leeds University I was accepted onto the CTC Cadet Programme. I was due to start in Dec 2011 but had to withdraw my application as I was diagnosed with Keratoconus. I was told that I would not pass the Class 1 Medical as Keratoconus is a 'disqualifying condition for an initial Class 1 application' (JAR-FCL 3.220(b)(3)). After some research I found that this is not the case for an FAA Class 1 medical. I don't want to give up my dream of becoming a pilot, and would be willing to travel to America for training. Would it be possible to convert the Class 1 medical from FAA to CAA after training, thus meaning it's not an initial application for the CAA Class 1 medical but a renewal? I have been informed by the medical examiner that the JAA regulations allow recertification of an individual with Keratoconus provided that they meet the Class 1 medical standards, but this clause does not apply to initial applicants for the Class 1 medical examination.

The medical examiner did mention that in 2012 the CAA will be implementing new European medical standards (EASA). Although these are not finalised, it is possible that there may be a change to the certification of initial applicants with Kerotoconus. Is it likely that the CAA regulations regarding Keratoconus will change?

Thanks for any help in advance
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Old 18th Apr 2012, 14:46
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Danny212... so you were issued an initial class 1 even though you were diagnosed with mild keratoconus? That sounds reassuring for other folks who might be in the same position. I would recommend you do some research on collagen crosslinking (CXL, C3R) and consult with several different clinics that perform the procedure. Also, consult with the medical folk at the CAA, because I heard that having the crosslinking procedure can ground you from flying for a year.

Josh90... Yes, it is true that the FAA does not consider keratoconus a disqualifying factor, however, I have heard of people who reported it at their Class 1 medical and were denied, not given a special issuance, etc. Is your keratoconus mild? When I ask this, I am asking if your vision is still normal (20/20, 10/10). If so, I would see an ophthalmologist and ask for a second opinion. This way, you can do your FAA medical with a clean bill of health.

I have heard that the recommendations for EASA medicals was going to remove keratoconus as a disqualifying factor for initial class 1 medicals, however I don't know if that will come into effect or not. Best to keep in touch with the CAA medical personnel to keep updated.
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Old 18th Apr 2012, 16:25
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Hi zondaracer,

Thanks for the quick reply! I only have Keratoconus in my left eye (6/36) and the vision in my right eye is perfect (20/20). My vision overall is normal, but with my right eye closed I struggle to meet the CAA visual requirements. I have been prescribed a hard contact lens from an ophthalmologist which has made the vision in my left eye significantly better. After notifying the CAA, however, their response was that Keratoconus is still disqualifying for an initial application. If I were to pass the FAA medical, would it be possible to convert this to a CAA medical in the future? I'm assuming then it would be classed as a renewal and not an initial application? It seems silly that Keratoconus is disqualifying but if diagnosed after passing the Class 1 medical then it is okay. Hopefully they change the regulations to allow people with Keratoconus that has been corrected to pass the initial medical.
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Old 4th May 2012, 20:22
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Cornea Transplants

Hello,

Although the posts go back 4 years I have no doubt that many people will be reading this thread. This is the top rated thread on Google for a search about kerataconus in pilots.

Some years ago someone wrote that "I will even consider a cornea transplant to get me flying"

I have Kerataconus in both eyes. Severe enough that I have had a full thickness cornea transplant in one of them. I do not fly and gave up the hope about 10 years ago when RGPs became my treatment. To be honest, even if they gave me a medical, I would not feel safe flying with RGPs! We've all had them cloud up, pop out of the eye when you quickly look fully left or right and in dry conditions slide off the centre of the eye.

Anyone reading this should take note, CORNEA TRANSPLANTS ARE A LAST RESORT AND BY NO MEANS DOES IT 'FIX' YOUR EYE SIGHT. The whole process takes 18 months to two years and there is pain, loads of eye drops and visits and at the end of it, guess what, I'm going to have an RGP fitted. For me this is fine because this is an improvement on what I had before but please be clear that seeing cornea transplants as this golden chalice is just mistaken.
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Old 13th May 2012, 20:07
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JAA/EASA Medical class 1 _Keratoconus

All
Anyone passed his Medical class 1 at Gatwick or somewhere else, with a Keratoconeous eye?...It seems it's no longer a disqualifying condition with the EASA...any idea?
Thank you.
Regards,
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Old 13th May 2012, 22:08
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Why don't you call Gatwick and ask?
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Old 9th Oct 2012, 13:31
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Recent Corneal Crosslinking

Hi All,

I am a US pilot flying for a major carrier for the last 23 years. Last year I was diagnosed with a form of keratocouns called pellucid marginal degeneration. I was just barely able to be corrected to 20/20 at that time. this spring I noticed my vision deteriorating and found I was not correctable to 20/20.

I had been researching Corneal Cross Linking, especially epithelium ON, for the last year. In July, I went to Boxer Wachler in LAX for his patented procedure, Holcombe C3-R. Within 3 days, my vision had improved dramatically. Where headlights while driving at night had become intolerable, they were back to normal and I could see the road with oncoming traffic. I can read the computer again without bifocals ( I am 51). I can read the ticker tape on the bottom of the TV form my couch again. I can read roadsigns from a normal distance. Yes, I still need glasses, but I have needed glasses for the last 40 years.

I am currently waiting for the FAA to reply to my record submittal for a 1st Class medical certificate.

Laura
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Old 9th Oct 2012, 14:32
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Hello starsrocket, did you get it with intacts or without?
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Old 20th Sep 2013, 18:35
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Keratoconus

hi. Please i need a valuable information from you. Since you are already a cabin crew can u plz tell me if patients with keratoconus and who wear hard lenses are allowed to work as cabin crew. i really want to work as an EK crew but am least afraid i may be unfit because of my keratoconus. plz any information u have do convey me. Thx and also wish u all the very best in your quest of becoming a pilot god bless it will be soon. Thx

Neil.
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