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External Ear

FAA Medical Exam Techniques

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Excerpts from AME Guide
Decision Considerations

Exam Techniques


Body Area Index
AME Guide
CFR Part 67 Index
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Guide for Aviation Medical Examiners
Application Process for Medical Certification

Exam Techniques and Criteria for Qualification
Items 25-30. Ear, Nose, and Throat - External Ear

The external ear is seldom a major problem in the medical certification of applicants. Otitis externa or a furuncle may call for temporary disqualification. Obstruction of the canal by impacted cerumen or cellular debris may indicate a need for referral to an ENT specialist for examination.

The tympanic membranes should be examined for scars or perforations. Discharge or granulation tissue may be the only observable indication of perforation. Middle ear disease may be revealed by retraction, fluid levels, or discoloration. The normal tympanic membrane is movable and pearly gray in color. Mobility should be demonstrated by watching the drum through the otoscope during a valsalva maneuver.

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Exam Techniques

Other Regions of Head and Neck

25. Head, Face, Neck, and Scalp 42. Upper and Lower Extremities
26. Nose 43. Spine and other Musculoskeletal
27. Sinuses 44. Identifying Body Marks, Scars, Tattoos
28. Mouth and Throat 45. Lymphatics
29. Ear 46. Neurologic
30. Ear Drums 47. Psychiatric Conditions
31. Eyes 48. General Systemic
32. Ophthalmoscopic 49. Hearing
33. Pupils 50. Distant Vision
34. Ocular Motility 51. Near and Intermediate Vision
35. Lungs and Chest 52. Color Vision
36. Heart 53. Field of Vision
37. Vascular System 54. Heterophoria
38. Abdomen and Viscera 55. Blood Pressure
39. Anus (No Disposition) 56. Pulse
40. Skin 57. Urinalysis
41. G-U System 58. ECG (No Disposition)

Note: Numbers correspond to the required entry in the AME portion of the FAA Form 8500-8

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The AME must personally conduct the examination. This section provides guidance for completion of the Application for Airman Medical Certificate +/- Student Pilot Certificate, FAA Form 8500-8.

The AME must note in Item 60 of the FAA Form 8500-8 any condition found in the course of the examination. The AME must list facts, such as dates, frequency, and severity.

When questions arises, AMEs must check the Guide for Aviation Medical Examiners and other FAA documents. If the question remains unresolved, the AME should seek advice from a RFS or the Manager of the AMCD.

After all evaluations and tests are completed, the AME reviews Form 8500-8. If complete and accurate, the AME adds final comments, makes qualification and decision statements, and signs the declaration. The medical history page must be completed in the handwriting of and signed and dated by the applicant. Upon completion of the examination, the entire FAA Form 8500-8 must be electronically transmitted to the FAA.

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