Recently I received an e-mail from the spouse of a commercial airline pilot. Though her husband has been diagnosed with ADHD (and, from her report, displays strong symptoms), she claimed that FAA guidelines prohibit him from taking medication for it. Could this be true? Yes, it appears so, according to this page on the Aviation Medication Advisory Service website:
Medication Class — Attention Deficit Disorder Medications
Medication Class Description:
Current FAA policy does not allow persons who use any medications for ADD or ADHD to hold an airman medical certificates.
The FAA now has a protocol for evaluating pilots with Attention Deficit Disorder prior to issuing a waiver. Some individuals using medication have been waivered after neurocognitive testing shows adequate performance at least 72 hours off the medication. If the results of this testing is favorable, the pilot may be cleared to fly if no longer taking medications. Individuals with a reliable childhood diagnosis of ADHD may have to wait 90 days after stopping medication to take the required testing. Read the rest of this entry »