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Pilot Education: LASER Exposure & Eye Injury

LASER exposure continues to be an increasingly frequent problem in both military and civilian aviation.  Typically, these exposures arise from people pointing green commercial LASERs directly at flying aircraft.       The FAA has been tracking the number of LASER incidents since 2005. This number has been increasing every[...Click Below to Read More]

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LASER Eye Injuries in Aircrew

A separate post written as a resource for pilots and aircrew on LASER exposure/eye injury can be found here.    The crux of aerospace medicine is the identification of medical conditions that lead to sudden and unanticipated incapacitation of the flyer. Screening for disease is performed during the initial flight[...Click Below to Read More]

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Become an Aviation Medical Examiner Today!

Last weekend, I attended a medical seminar held by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in Denver, CO.  The seminar was a refresher training seminar for Aviation Medical Examiners (AME).  Although I had not yet been designated an AME, my experience and training as a USAF flight surgeon allowed me to[...Click Below to Read More]

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Spitfire 944 – WWII Flight Surgeon Footage

This short 14 minute documentary featured in the 2007 Sundance Film Festival won’t leave you disappointed.  The film invigorates an aged WWII pilot when he is reunited with old video footage of himself taken by his unit’s flight surgeon during the war. The film was directed by William Lorton and produced by[...Click Below to Read More]

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Top Knife – Fighter Pilot Tactics for Flight Docs

This article discusses an awesome opportunity specifically designed for USAF flight surgeons to gain a firmer understanding on fighter and combat aircraft operations.  This course is a good use of time for any military flight surgeon, but is an absolute necessity for any flight doc assigned to a fighter squadron,[...Click Below to Read More]

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In Flight Emergency – Cabin Pressure & Hypoxia

I was recently in Estonia for a NATO military training exercise.  Flying in the back seat of an F-16D (two seater), I was ‘gently’ reminded of the importance of human factors in flight and the constant, inherent danger in combat aviation.  Even in the training environment, significant risks and aeromedical stressors[...Click Below to Read More]

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Clearing Your Ears

Most aviators learn early in their career that flying with a simple upper respiratory infection or seasonal allergies can be painful.  Gases in the sinuses and middle ear expand in accordance with Boyles Law as altitude increases and pressure decreases. [For a full discussion on the Gas Laws that apply[...Click Below to Read More]

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‘Fitness for Flight’ – Mental Health & Antidepressants

The recent Germanwings tragedy has called commercial aviation’s concept of ‘Fitness for Flight’ into question.  In case the reader has just returned from a week long hike in the wilderness and missed the news headlines – on 24 March 2014 an Airbus 320 carrying 150 passengers destined for Dusseldorf, Germany from[...Click Below to Read More]

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From the Cockpit to the Hospital – CRM for Docs

Have you ever been part of Code Blue (patient in full arrest) that went horribly wrong?  Almost all docs have a horror story from either a real-world or (preferably) sim lab scenario where a resuscitation fell apart and ultimately led to catastrophe.  What happened?  If I’m wagering a bet on the[...Click Below to Read More]

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U.S. Military Aerospace Physiology

Aerospace and Operational Physiology (AOP) has the unique challenge of bridging physiologic sciences with the operational environment.  Many people think “they just work with pilots and do altitude chamber training.”  While we do frequently work with pilots and other aircrew, many are unaware of other human factor issues on which[...Click Below to Read More]

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