Can you tell me more about the medical exam?

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The medical exam is performed by an FAA-approved doctor, called an Aviation Medical Examiner.  The doctor will perform a standard medical evaluation for a “Class III” medical, which is valid for five years if under 40 years of age, or three years if 40 and over.  The exam consists of a basic screening that checks if you can pilot and airplane without any impediments.  The areas the doctor will look at are

  • Visual:  vision correctable to at least 20/40 and can see colors that will ensure safe airplane operations
  • Audio: can you have a conversation from 6 feet away?
  • Mental: any neurological or mental concerns
  • Physical screening: cardiac health, heart replacement, pacemaker, etc.
  • Review your medical records
  • Review current prescription medications
  • Urine drug/sugar exam

Since there are a myriad of questions regarding the medical exam, visit the Airplane Owners and Pilot Association’s website on aviation medical certification for more specific information.

If you have any medical concerns or questions, it is best to consult with a doctor before going in for the exam.