Mild OSA


Well-Known Member
I am currently in the military and was diagnosed with mild OSA. The AHI was 13. From what I could find on the FAA website anything over 15 requires the use of a CPAP. My Army Flight Surgeon seemed undecided on prescribing a machine to use but thought why not especially if it might help. When I go to get my FAA 1st Class medical will the FAA need me to do a special issuance even though I am below their threshold for OSA?
Hi KSUto64,

When you arrive for your medical exam your AME is tasked with assigning you one of 3 categories/6 risk levels for OSA:

Applicant Previously Assessed:

Group 1: Has OSA diagnosis and is on Special Issuance. Reports to follow.
Group 2: Has OSA diagnosis OR has had previous OSA assessment. NOT on Special Issuance. Reports to follow.

Applicant Not at Risk:

Group 3: Determined to NOT be at risk for OSA at this examination.

Applicant at Risk/Severity to be assessed:

Group 4: Discuss OSA risk with airman and provide educational materials.
Group 5: At risk for OSA. AASM sleep apnea assessment required. Applicant Risk/Severity Extremely High:
Group 6: Deferred. Immediate safety risk. AASM sleep apnea assessment required. Reports to follow.

You would most likely fall into group 2, which would require you have your previous OSA assessment sent to the FAA to evaluate whether special issuance is required. the issuance would likely hinge on your other risk factors, certainly using CPAP would increase the likelihood of a special issuance.

Best Regards,

Aaron Florkowski, MD
FAA designated Aviation Medical Examiner