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Old 04-25-2018, 07:20 PM   #1  
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Default Substance Abuse

Letís say, someone had an incident that the company made then get a substance abuse evaluation done. The evaluation comes back saying they have a dependence of alcohol and a mild alcohol use disorder. And the evaluators reasons for this diagnosis are reasons that you mentioned 16-18 years ago in college. Would this be a valid reason to warrant a second opinion? I believe if this person had a dependvy issue, the evaluation should reflect something far more current than 16 years ago? The person hardly drinks now and the evaluator put down also has withdrawal symptoms. Why is this crap such taboo when a shrink can say someone has an issue, yet if it was Cancer, nobody would bat an eye for getting multiple opinions!
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Old 04-25-2018, 07:59 PM   #2  
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I suggest you see a HIMS AME and do whatever he or she tells you to do. Alcohol dependence is a disqualifying condition for a medical certificate, and in my opinion, trying to change the FAAís mind about this diagnosis would just be a waste of time and money. Best wishes for your recovery and return to flying!
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Old 04-25-2018, 09:45 PM   #3  
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Originally Posted by Brokeasspot View Post
Letís say, someone had an incident that the company made then get a substance abuse evaluation done. The evaluation comes back saying they have a dependence of alcohol and a mild alcohol use disorder. And the evaluators reasons for this diagnosis are reasons that you mentioned 16-18 years ago in college. Would this be a valid reason to warrant a second opinion? I believe if this person had a dependvy issue, the evaluation should reflect something far more current than 16 years ago? The person hardly drinks now and the evaluator put down also has withdrawal symptoms. Why is this crap such taboo when a shrink can say someone has an issue, yet if it was Cancer, nobody would bat an eye for getting multiple opinions!

You can absolutely get a second opinion, or more, but the people that ultimately must be convinced are the people in the Federal Air Surgeon's office, and they are spring loaded to err on the side of caution - and that isn't caution for you or your flying career, it's caution for the flying public.

Just the fact that they had an incident sufficient to draw the attention of the company gets someone fifty percent of the way to a DSM V criteria for a mild alcohol use disorder even if there was absolutely nothing else in the persons history at all.

So you can certainly tell this hypothetical someone to get a second opinion, and that's always an option, but a better option would be for them to get over the denial and go see a HIMS AME and count their blessings there is actually a program that MAY enable your hypothetical friend to eventually get their medical back.
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