General Pilot Medicals

In general terms, and applying to all classes, l would make the following points.

  • A medical can be done up to 45 days before the ‘due date’. This means that you will not lose the date when your next medical is due. I would strongly advise that you take this opportunity as l have had several cases when leaving the medical to the last minute has been a problem. A few issues (e.g. blood in the urine, not visible but present on testing) may delay the issuing of a certificate until investigations can be done. As we are all aware there can be long delays for appointments even privately and this may mean that the certificate cannot be issued when it might be needed for a flying check/ taking up a new job or some such.
  • If possible you should be well rested when coming for a medical.
  • If you wear contact lenses, please come with them out or be prepared to remove. Please bring all the corrections you wear for actual flying. It is helpful if you can bring your opticians report.
  • If not done recently, commercial pilots may care to down load the CAA form and take it to their eye appointment. ( At the medical l can enter the data into a program which will tell us when you next need to repeat the exercise.
  • Please be prepared to pass urine for testing. Acute physical activity can actually cause (microscopic) blood in the urine and this should be borne in mind.
  • If coming for an ECG, stimulants such as caffeinated coffee, coca cola, red bull et.c. should be avoided as they might cause problems with the heart rhythm which might then lead to prolonged (and possibly costly) investigation.
  • Blood testing of all sorts can be done during the medical. For mandatory haemoglobin (anaemia) testing in Class 1pilots l do a finger prick test. I also have a kit for finger prick testing Cholesterol and HDL Cholesterol. Any other tests can be done (they are posted and tested in London) though, if urgent, a courier can be arranged at a moderate cost so that the results are available next morning. Fasting is not essential as the variation with fasting and HDL is only about 2% and, for total Cholesterol, most doctors do not feel it s required (Few studies have been done). Some pilots come for a set of the most important blood tests annually and l have some ‘profiles’ for this at a reasonable cost (see “prices”)
  • I am required to ask pilots coming for a medical if they require a This can always be provided, in Whitstable, it is best to ask in advance, as l have to make arrangements.
  • It is vital that the questionnaire regarding medical problems is fully and accurately completed. Please go back to birth and miss nothing. It is also helpful if you have accurate dates. More importantly, documentary evidence is essential and should be brought to every medical, whether a full set to an initial or for information since the last check.
  • Relating to the point above; if you have ANY medical intervention, please ask at the beginning for a copy of everything to do with the problem. This should include not just letters to your GP but blood results, histology results, the actual results of heart investigations (including DVD if appropriate). Not having these might delay the issuing of a certificate in some cases. The motto is; “you can never have too much information but you can easily have too little”,
  • If you are coming for an initial medical and you have or have had had a large number of medical problems, please tell me first as an hour may just not be enough.
  • If you have blood pressure problems and own your own testing machine (which l advise and can usually be easily bought at a modest cost from most chemists (I often have some to sell)) please bring at least six days readings taken at different times. The reason for this is that if the reading taken during the medical is slightly too high, these readings can be taken into account.
  • Finally, please try not to be nervous. The vast majority of pilots pass their medical with absolutely no problem. I try and make the sessions as relaxed as possible and l welcome questions and also criticism and feedback.

For more information or to book an appointment please contact Philip Ranger on his mobile (07740 868749) or alternatively phone Redhill (open Tuesdays & Thursdays but can leave message) on 01737 823 550. You can also book online below:

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If you are a new patient please remember your photo ID. All pilots should bring details of any medical issues since your last medical.


Cholesterol test now available, cost £17.50 - please request with your medical - Submit your plane to feature on our pilots section