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Stroke

Old 29th Dec 2011, 12:48
  #1 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Sydney
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Stroke

About 3 weeks ago I suffered a stroke. Iím only 21 and I wasnít flying at the time, nor have I flown since. The only symptom I had was slight double vision and that passed within 10 minutes. It was only about a week later, after examining the scans of my head that the neurologist told me I'd had a stroke. The cardiologist found a small hole in my heart, which he plugged with a PFO a couple of days later, and I was cleared to drive the morning after.

I am currently over half way through my training; I have my PPL and CSU/RG, and was very close to sitting my CPL flight test. What sort of chance do I have of getting a Class 1 medical again? Iíve had a look through the CASA site, but I can't find anything about it.
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Old 29th Dec 2011, 13:50
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Germany
Age: 41
Posts: 4
Hello laxxa,

did you see my recent post? I had a subarachnoid haemorrhage which classifies as a stroke too. They even put me in a coma, though I had no neurological blackouts like blurred vision or lack of motor co-ordination.

I don't know the Australian regulations, but I think you will find my story reassuring. When I could get my medical back here in Euroland why shouldn't you get yours back as well? Chin up!

Last edited by Hunt-and-Hess-II; 29th Dec 2011 at 13:55. Reason: link added, typo
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Old 29th Dec 2011, 15:35
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: UK
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I can only talk in terms of the UK CAA but I have had pretty much the same as you and am nearing an initial decision from them. In summary I had:

- Stroke with no residual after effects
- PFO discovered during investigations
- All other investigations normal
- PFO sealed

As a rule of thumb, expect to wait a minimum of 1 year before they will even consider certification. If they do re-certify you, the best you will get is a multi-crew limited medical (called OML in UK). Fine for airlines, no good for things like single pilot etc.

You need to get all the tests possible to cover every base - wait until 3 months post PFO closure then something like... repeat bubble echo (to prove sealed), exercise ECG, 24hr ECG, Bloods.

Get copies of EVERYTHING - all medical reports, CT scans, MRI/MRA - the lot. You need to hand the authority as much information as possible in order to allow them to assess your case. Centre piece to this will be an in-depth report from your consultant Neurologist which covers key topics such as -

1) Cause, Treatment, Prognosis
2) Risk of recurrence (hint: must be in the 1% area ideally)
3) Risk of seizure
4) Medication, long term outlook etc

Even after all this, be prepared for them to say it's a perm disqualification. The key sticking point is usually risk of recurrence/seizure.

The fact you had a PFO is actually good for the case as it gives a reason for the stroke (albeit a currently controversial one in the world of medical opinion)

Do your research. Lots of info on the internet, etc.

Don't give up. Stay positive. Good Luck.
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Old 29th Dec 2011, 15:56
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 46
Hi Laxxa,

I am based in the UK and suffered a TIA stroke two years or so ago. It occurred whilst working in the Office on the telephone, tingling down the right hand side of the face and unable to talk! I regained my speech fairly well over time thanks to a new clot busting treatment.

The UK CAA pulled my class 2 medical and the Driving agency did the same. I had passed my JAR ( Euro land Pilots Licence ) medical six weeks or so beforehand, so proving it was just a snapshot on the day.

I was 60 yrs old and just a hobby Pilot / aircraft owner, not like you looking for a career in Aviation. I eventually obtained a NPPL ( National Licence peculiar to the UK ) and my doctor signed a medical declaration which once more allows me to fly again and take passengers but only basically in the UK ( no more foreign flying holidays! )

The Medical Declaration is based on the UK medical car driving standard! The combination of the NPPL and Medical declaration have kept many Pilots flying for leisure purposes in the UK who would otherwise have been grounded for ever ( statistics have shown over time that these pilots pose no greater a risk than others flying on a JAR Euroland medical )

Moving on to your'e situation the UK CAA have very strict medical criteria for many illnesses including cardio vascular type problems and I suspect the Aussie equivalent may be the same. In the UK anything classed as a stroke is automatic debarring for a class 1 medical, end of story.

However in your case you mention a hole in the heart which has been cured but you do not say if this was the cause of your'e stroke? blood clotting perhaps? I suspect you may well have to go down the route of specialist's to prove that you no longer pose a risk for a class 1 medical and it may well be a long and frustrating path, but in my view possibly achievable if you can get the correct people to say the right things!

Another thing possibly in your'e favour is multi crew resourcing which could possibly give you a role in the Commercial field but I have no experience of this aspect but hopefully others will be along with the knowledge.

Best of luck and keep us Posted as to how you get on as Strokes and heart problems, contrary to Public belief have no respect for age and you are a very young man and without doubt others will be faced with similar difficulties in the future.
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Old 16th Oct 2014, 09:47
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: In transit
Age: 66
Posts: 3,059
I am posting this in the hope that it may save someone from the consequences of a stroke. It's a salutary tale.

This was related to me by an elderly man I know (80) who's extremely astute and well-informed, an ex-journo, and whose memory and recall are better than most people half his age.

He was in a shop and said he felt 'slightly unwell' but didn't put it down to anything serious. He went to complete his purchases and had forgotten his credit card PIN, something that had never happened to him before. He thought he might have had a mild stroke and got a taxi to a nearby hospital, where he was taken in and found that he had indeed had a minor stroke. He was treated and discharged, given meds, and is now fine, but was told that had it not been for his quick action and self-diagnosis, the effects could have been serious.
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Old 21st Feb 2018, 12:23
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Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Brighton
Posts: 2
Hi , unfortunately , last year I joined the "stroke club". After much testing and head scratching as to the cause ( I am 38 , fit , don't drink excessively , or smoke etc) the haematologist has diagnosed me with Essential Thrombocytheamia (ET). ET makes your blood more likely to clot. ET although looking fairly bad on a google search is not a big deal medically (according to two haematologists) and can be managed with a number of medications to keep the platelet count down and stop clotting. The stroke happened July 2017, and I am now going through the process of attempting to get my Class 1 back. Realise this is a long shot but the company AME thinks its worth a go.

Anyone had any recent relevant experience with attempting to regain Class 1 medical under EASA regs as I understand under the old CAA rules it was a different (easier) matter.

Thanks
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Old 25th Aug 2018, 13:39
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Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Brighton
Posts: 2
Further to my last ....

So anyone out there got any experience of regaining a class 1 , after a stroke , UK CAA have just classed me as long term unfit due to increased risk of epilepsy after a stroke . This is not something the consultants I have talked to have ever mentioned before?
Also how can those who regained class 1 after stroke under the old (non EASA ) CAA rules , not be at risk of epilepsy ?
If anyone has any input about stroke and regaining medical in any country i would be very grateful , I understand it is easier in Australia if under 40.

thanks U1
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