My situation - can I still get a medical?


New Member
Dr. Forred,

I have a few questions for you about getting medically cleared to fly again.

First - my story. I'm a healthy 22 year old college student with a PPL. I have never had any medical problems, nothing more than the occasional cold. About 15 months ago, I was on a routine solo training flight for when I became sick. I expereinced shortness of breath, severe tingling/numbness/stiffness in the hands, chest, head, and feet, and a rapid heartbeat. I promptly diverted to a nearby airport and landed safely. I felt normal the next day, but grounded myself per 61.53.

Later that week, I was examined by a family doctor (who happened to be an AME); and he said my symptoms were due to an anxiety attack. He didn't take my medical, but said I shouldn't fly until I went to another doctor for a more thorough exam. I saw the other doctor (not an AME) and he said the same thing - it was an anxiety attack and there was nothing else wrong with me. He didn't prescribe any meds, but recommended I see a psychologist, which I never did.

The AME never contacted me again and my medical was never revoked. I have since discontinued flying and flight training because I'm unsure of my status. Since last September, I haven't had any of these symptoms whatsoever, and I'm not taking any kind of medication.

Can I still legally fly, or am I permanently grounded? I still hold a 1st class medical, it wasn't suspended or revoked. Do I need to report this on my next medical application?

My Flight Surgeon

Sr. Aviation Medical Examiner
You have to look at what was happening during the flight. Was it a simple local flight or were things tense? Everyone has some anxiety, that is normal. To be wise enough to recognize it and land shows a mature pilot.

It was a single event with no recurrence. I would try another flight on a nice clear, calm day. If there are no recurrences, this was a single event and may not be worth mentioning - kind of like an acute ear infection.


New Member
Things were tense. It was my first solo flight in almost a year, there was moderate turbulence, and winds were gusting to 25 kts. I've had a few attacks like this before, but interestingly enough, only while driving. Before that issue I've never had any problems in the airplane.

So you're saying I'm good to go?