Vaso Vagal Syncope (Fainting)


New Member
I've read the other threads about Vaso Vagal syncope, and they are encouraging, but my situation is a little more dire.

6 months ago I was taking my CFII Instrument Instructor checkride when I passed out in flight.

Doctors said that in this case it was caused by dehydration, low blood sugar from not eating that day, nervousness, high altitude, sickness, lack of sleep, and stress.

I was grounded while I took a Cariological and Nuerological exam, a blood test, an ekg stress test, a holter monitor, a carotid ultrasound, a chest echo, and finally a tilt table. All without insurance (because I'm a flight instructor remember.)

Well, you can guess the result, everything came back healthy as a pilot, until I passed out on the tilt table without pharmacological provocation.

I also have a history of Vaso Vagal syncope, with 5 occurances during elementary and middle school, and one in college, but none in the last 5 years. (except the one in flight and one on the tilt table.) I had been honest about my history during my initial medical and got my 2nd class without a problem.


After submitting the test results to the FAA my medical certificate was revoked. Although they explained nothing, I've heard that I can re-apply in 3 years, or sooner if something changes.


I explained the situation to the doctors at, and they assured me they could get it back. As soon as they got my $700 they said "it's complecated", became unhelpful, and refused to work with my doctors. Suggesting only that I fly to Oklahoma to hire theirs.

I think I can recognize now when I have low blood sugar from symptoms like hunger and thirst, headache, light headedness, and weakness.

My doctor's recommendation is simple; drink sportsdrinks for water and salt, and don't fly hungry.

What can I do to convince the FAA that I don't want to fly with low blood sugar any more than any normal person wants to fly drunk?

I really want to fly again. First because I love it, and second because Without a job in aviation, I'll never be able to pay off my flight school, and medical debts.

How can I get my medical back?


New Member
When I called Northwest Regional, Ms Martin read me the regulations and they said that even if I get some kind of treatment, and take another tilt table without passing out, it wouldn't necessarily mean it had worked due to false negatives.

Is there anything specific I should ask her about?


New Member

Call Dr. Leo Hattrup at Aviation & Preventive Medicine Associates 719-481-1006. My airline union keeps him on retainer to deal with medical certification issues. I don't know what his rates are or even if he deals with non-airline pilots, but he and his partner are very effective and skilled at navigating the Medical Certification Branch on the pilot's behalf. He does not act in an AME capacity, so everything you tell him remains confidential. Good luck.