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EK and Snoring

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EK and Snoring

Old 6th Jun 2016, 11:22
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EK and Snoring

I've heard some rather disturbing stories about the consequences of telling the EK clinic that one snores.

Anybody had personal experience of this and would you mind sharing your story?
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 12:30
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I flew with a guy who had been to the clinic in Al Ain.
He was forced to wear a positive pressure mask when sleeping. This thing records its time in use and you need to submit the records monthly. He was a very unhappy camper.
you DO NOT want to go down that path. Do your medical, keep your mouth shut and get on with your life.
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 12:50
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Trouble is JAYTO, keeping your mouth shut may not be enough. Google STOP BANG. If you meet the criteria the Clinic may send you to Al Ain.
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 12:50
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The medical is not an insanity check up (despite the Germanwings incident). The least you say or own up to and the quicker you are out of the doctors room = all the better for you. You passed and are certified for another year, no more, no less, desired outcome achieved.

Why create problems for yourself if there is no physical evidence being seen in a medical? I am pretty certain that everyone snores at sometime (especially after a few Vimtos), be sensible, why create doubt in a doctors mind? Unless a condition is really impacting your health to fly, then do what you need to do to pass the medical.

Safe flying and snore free nights. Disclaimer, I did the sleep apnoea test and passed, it's scaremongering and a waste of 11k AED for the test.
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 13:08
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GCAA document after Google search will show you the questionnaire relating to STOP BANG assessment as SOPS mentioned. Choose how you want to answer those questions is your choice.
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 14:00
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don't forget the clinic is not there to help you its there to spy on you and intimidate you
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 14:47
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Kapitanleutnant
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As one who went thru this bullsh*t....

Everything above is true. The doctors are absolutely your enemy when it comes to this stuff. Tell them NOTHING! It almost seems they're looking for a reason to ground you as if they have an internal competition for that... Or who can give out the most referrals in a month or some crap like that... For the most insignificant issue.

There used to be a few "good ones" to go to who were big picture but they've been swallowed by the EK machine and run scared from fleet IMO.

DO NOT EVER, EVER USE THE WORD SNORE AT THE EK CLINIC!! Kiss of death and career.

In my 7 plus years, I had to take 4 sleep studies. And was required to wear this device my last year at Slave Ship Airlines, called a cpap machine 85%of the time while at EK.... It was required by GCAA. As someone says, the sleep is recorded on an SD card and you are required to send this in to sleep study doctor for analysis. Total and complete PITA!

I know one longtime FO at SS Airlines who has been doing this for a number of years.

Tell them at your own peril...
 
Old 6th Jun 2016, 14:59
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So you have to take this thing on your overnights I assume?
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 15:20
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Is it approved for use in the flight deck?
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 17:54
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Everything above is true. The doctors are absolutely your enemy when it comes to this stuff. Tell them NOTHING! It almost seems they're looking for a reason to ground you as if they have an internal competition for that... Or who can give out the most referrals in a month or some crap like that... For the most insignificant issue
One of the problems for the doctors is that they're not allowed to sign people SKF over a certain threshold of days/year. So a doctor has no choice but to find "something" to ground you if they sense that you're not fit to fly. And a lot of pilots are very fatigued, though some might not want to admit it. It's all internal politics between Fleet and EG Medical with the doctors and pilots being the pawns in between... Most doctors hired within the last five years resigned within a year of hiring. The number of AME's within EK as not increased over the last eight years or so while the numbers of pilots has doubled...
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Old 6th Jun 2016, 18:43
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Kapitanleutnant
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All I can say to you gents is that you must wear it 85% of your life... If there's an outlet in the CRC, I suppose you could use it there as well if needed.

Innocent is spot on.... The doctors went head to head with Fleet back in about 2010 when there was an increasing number of SKF calls and fleet thought they could override the doctors and tried to do so. Well, the doctors retaliated by looking for ANYTHING as a reason to ground pilots in a temporary manner.... not so much to help the pilot per se but rather to show they ultimately controlled the pilots roster and availability... and I recall being caught in the middle of that.

I'm sure it's still going on.

The ONLY thing better now with EG Medical is that Nomi has left the building!!
 
Old 7th Jun 2016, 05:27
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All I can say to you gents is that you must wear it 85% of your life... If there's an outlet in the CRC, I suppose you could use it there as well if needed.
A few things happen in the CRC that we do not speak about, but from our esteemed manuals :

"Units must not be connected to any of the aircraft power sockets"

As long as you do not do a Honeyball Lecter on me in the CRC, feel free to wear it........
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Old 9th Jun 2016, 12:29
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Interesting.


Pax wanting to use a CPAP must have a letter/doctor's approval and carry batteries to last the flight. Cannot use the aircraft power outlets either (it's in the OM-E if anyone is curious)

So is the clinic giving letters to the guys who are supposed to use them for them to carry it onboard? And how is the other guy supposed to sleep? Some of those things are noisy af...
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Old 9th Jun 2016, 23:43
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Flip me all this beggars beilief. They really do try and control most aspects of your life. Better to stay quiet at your medical than suffer this!
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Old 11th Jun 2016, 07:53
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Excuse the perhaps dumb questions but: What's wrong with snoring and how does it effect a person's fitness to fly?
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Old 11th Jun 2016, 08:25
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"Do you snore?"

No idea I am asleep!
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Old 11th Jun 2016, 09:10
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Just to give all an idea of how serious they take the snoring nonsense.... and I will ad this caveat... it was when Nomi was there at the clinic, and he is the single individual who basically started the "snoring" mania issues with pilots.

I had talked to a colleague who told me he went to the EK clinic dentist who said he should get a "mandibular device" e.g. something to help him sleep better. This thing brings out your lower jawbone so as to not obstruct airway when sleeping. Sounded good for me so a few months later (or longer) I made appt with same dentist

Mentioned to HER(the lass) all he above and she said while I was sitting in the chair at HER office, "OK, I'll be right back". I waited about 5 minutes and she came back and reported this: "I went to ask Dr. Nomi about this and he says you'll need to see your doctor immediately about this and take a sleep study test".

Needless to say I was absolutely livid that SHE mentioned my confidential (or what is in all First World Western Societies) symptoms to anyone else... and especially Nomi! I told her in absolute no uncertain terms she had no right to tell anyone else of my conversation with.

Longer story short... I received to cordial letters from Nomi stating I was required to see my doctor. I begrudgingly did and the doctor rolled his eyes and I further said I believe my doctor/patient privilege was breached etc. He agreed and I asked him to write in his report that very statement and the doctor mentioned it would keep Nomi quiet on this one.... BUT I'D HAVE TO GO GET A SLEEP TEST!.

I was not happy, but there was nothing I could really do. I thought about writing an official complaint against the female (Irish or Scottish) dentist but like all EK pilots, was just simply too tired to follow thru on it. Rather spend my few days off sleeping!!

For those that take that sleep study test: If you have 5 or less AHI (apno-hypopnic incidents" for the night, you pass the test. Also remember, if diagnosed with "Mild sleep apnea", there is no treatment and you're fine and don' need to do anything. Don't let them tell you otherwise.

Kap
Ex Slave Ship Airlines
 
Old 11th Jun 2016, 10:54
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What's wrong with snoring and how does it effect a person's fitness to fly?
As one who has been diagnosed with Sleep Apnoea when the whole thing kicked off I will try and put a few rumours to bed here!

At first, I too was outraged by the idea that I may have a sleeping problem - having casually mentioned to one of our Docs that I'd been doing a lot of night turns and was tired. (Before the Gnome Doc was here I believe). I was sent off for a sleep test at the American Hospital and lo and behold I apparently 'woke up' 135 times in the six hours sleep I managed (wired up like a Christmas Tree); the thing is though I wasn't aware that I had woken - basically my airway was closing off because of snoring and after 30 to 40 seconds of NO breathing the body wakes itself up to get a bit of the good old O2... You'll find that the O2 SATS drop into the mid 80% range and that isn't good.

I went back to the lab for a second test, this time with a CPAP machine, and ended up having the best night's sleep in ages!!! I now use a CPAP machine every night that I can - and if I don't use I definitely feel tireder the next day.

To satisfy GCAA Medical requirements I'm supposed to comply with using it 80 - 85% of the time! I see a pulmonologist every 6 months so he can check the data. It sounds like a drag but I combine the visit with a gym/pool trip to Pharoahs' nearby...

I DON'T use it in the CRC... But I do carry it on layovers and use it in the hotel...

Sleep Apnoea has a strong causal link to cardiac disease and other ailments! The FAA are rumoured to be putting all 'large/obese' pilots through sleep tests too!

From my POV? If you have Sleep Apnoea then do yourself (and family) a favour by getting it dealt with... You'll feel better and live longer...
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Old 11th Jun 2016, 10:57
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Kapitanleutnant
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I agree completely White Knight!

I just have a bad taste in my mouth as to "how" it was done in my particular case.

Yes, the FAA is starting to give out the sleep tests as well....

K
 
Old 11th Jun 2016, 13:38
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As to the 'how' KL I do agree that it was underhand and in breach of patient confidentiality...

Sadly this is more and more the 'norm' here these days!
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