Item 18q - Motion Sickness

My Flight Surgeon

Sr. Aviation Medical Examiner
This is one of a series of posts about medical issues potentially affecting a pilot’s ability to obtain a medical certificate. In this series, we will look at common problems seen by the AME, review the requirements the FAA has to consider allowing one to fly and discuss what you need to do to expedite consideration by the FAA to allow you to fly. We plan to go through all of the medical history items in Section 18 on the front of Form 8500-8 over the next several months.

I would suggest that if you are unsure of how to answer these questions in Item 18, you discuss them with your AME before you complete the form. Some things may not be significant while others will require explanation.

Item 18.q. Motion sickness requiring medication

Motion sickness is a common problem. A careful history concerning the nature of the sickness, frequency and need for medication is indicated when the applicant responds affirmatively to this item. Because motion sickness varies with the nature of the stimulus, it is most helpful to know if the problem has occurred in flight or under similar circumstances. As always, the airman must submit all pertinent medical information and current status report for review. If the motion sickness occurred during flight training and resolved then the AME may issue the medical certificate. If it requires medication then the decision regarding the medical certificate lies with the FAA. The only treatment that we know is acceptable for motion sickness is ginger root, an herbal therapy. The dose is 250 mg. at least an hour before inducing the symptoms.