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Asthma waiver

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mixed_aladdin

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Hey, I have been accepted to a med school and will start Fall 2018. I am trying to do HPSP and would really like to serve in the army or air force and have met with recruiters for application process information. However, I have asthma. Is this an automatic disqualification or is there any way to get a waiver for this?
 

militaryPHYS

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Technically if you are being treated for asthma or a similar reactive airway disease after the age of 13 you are "disqualified" from service...However, depending on severity of disease you may still be granted a waiver. It is tough to get a waiver for asthma if you use albuterol on a regular basis before, during or after cardiovascular exercise. That being said, you will not know for sure until you meet with the screening docs for your specific service. If you want to serve, give it a shot!
 

numberwunn

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Hey, I have been accepted to a med school and will start Fall 2018. I am trying to do HPSP and would really like to serve in the army or air force and have met with recruiters for application process information. However, I have asthma. Is this an automatic disqualification or is there any way to get a waiver for this?

I have a history of asthma, and received a waiver into the USMC (and from there into USN for medical school). Did get rejected from being a flight surgeon, however.

It was a seriously uphill battle. My asthma is very mild - I don't get asthma "attacks" and do fine without medication -- deployed to OEF without an inhaler - but meet PFT criteria for asthma and use an inhaler daily now. I had to really push my case, had to find a doc who helped argue my case, and it ended up working out, though I expect that I was the exception rather than the rule.

Bottom line - you'll never know if you don't try, but at the least expect lots of resistance.
 
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workaholic181

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Technically if you are being treated for asthma or a similar reactive airway disease after the age of 13 you are "disqualified" from service...However, depending on severity of disease you may still be granted a waiver. It is tough to get a waiver for asthma if you use albuterol on a regular basis before, during or after cardiovascular exercise. That being said, you will not know for sure until you meet with the screening docs for your specific service. If you want to serve, give it a shot!

I got an asthma waiver, but it is an uphill battle. You're probably gonna be asked to take a pulmonary function test and this thing called a methacholine challenge.. the methacholine challenge basically introduces an irritant to your airway and if you have asthma you will react negatively to it. It's the gold standard for the military in terms of testing if you have asthma. Passing this is what got me my waiver, but it took a really, really long time.
 
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We had a FM person in my little hospital that had significant asthma. It was waived and got much worse, allegedly, in the desert. She couldn’t deploy.
Her colleagues really loved her after that as they were tasked to cover her deployments.
I don’t think they should waiver it, but maybe if it really is very mild and you can still deploy, etc.


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Il Destriero
 
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