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AIB + Medical / Dental Exam


This is my first post, so apologies if it isnt in the right section.

I was wondering if anyone can give me any advice on the numbers of people turned away from RN due to medical reasons (not including fitness of course). And what does the medical involve? I dont think I have anything to worry about but how ghastly would it be to pass your AIB after all that work and then be turned down on a medical issue...

But more importantly I am curious about the Dental exam. I have heard that there is one? I didnt take brilliant care of my teeth through uni, and am currently setting about seeing a hygenist, getting it all sorted etc. I have 6 months until my AIB, and I was hoping someone could advise me on how tough they are about your teeth etc?
Many thanks.


War Hero

Hiya Luke, welcome to RR

Yep, you're in the correct forum.

If you need further dental treatment you will be told by the Medical Officer. As you have 6 months before AIB anyway, simply book a check-up, if you haven't had one already & complete any dental treatment required before AIB. As long as you aren't having a protracted & complicated course of orthodontics (braces, etc) & don't need any extractions or fillings, there is little to fear. You are expected to join in a reasonable state of dental health- after you've joined any further treatment is free.

The medical itself comprises an eye test (beforehand), colour percption test, hearing test, blood pressure, height/weight (BMI), a check on your heart & chest, urine sample & a chat about your entire previous medical history. There is no requirement to demonstrate at the medical your physical fitness, however that will be assessed at AIB. If there is any medical issues requiring further investigation the Medical Officer will write to your GP, with your permission, regarding details of the condition in order to make an assessment, if necessary referring you to a specialist in that particular field for an expert opinion.

Good Luck.
Thanks for the help, I'm sure there isnt anything to worry about but its good to be curious I think.

I actually had an eyesight test done at first enquiry, and I was very suprised to find I was below standard in my right eye, and thusly in both eyes combined. I dont wear glasses so I was reasonably shocked. So I've had laser eye surgery for the RN, to correct it.

That was quite a drama in itself because you need to have a particular type of surgery, which is rare and not the most efficient of methods. And afterwards the RN asks you to wait 12 months before continuing with your application. Hence the time to prepare for the AIB!

Thanks again.
Hi Luke,

I had an AIB medical a couple of weeks ago and I must say it was the most thorough medical I have ever had.

Nothing to worry about though, it covers general health, heart, reflexes, eyes, ears, BMI, peak flow breathing etc (Blood test also for blood group). I don't remember anything about teeth but mine are OK anyway. Provided you are honest on your applicaiton form, if there are any medical issues of concern they will have contacted your GP prior to you having the medical.

Ninja is, as always, spot on...

Good luck at AIB


i had one about a month ago. the part where they look into your history is thorough. I took roaccutane for acne a year ago, which can affect night vision in a very small minority. because of that i am now on a waiting list for a night vision test. if i fail that i cant be aircrew. just dont worry i guess, its one part of the AIB you cant do anything about.


War Hero
I am curious, as you have had an eyetest when you send your papers in, do they do it all again anyway?
Hi Stumpy,

I cant advise you on eyesight policy, but I can tell you what i experienced. When i applied online and was sent some basic forms, it listed four catagories of eyesight. S1, S2, S3 and OL. S1 is the best, then S2, then S3 and OL is Outside the Limit (i.e fail).

I was S3 in my left and OL in my right. As combined eyesight is an average of both, and both have to be at least S3 I was listed as OL. And I can tell you that my astigmatism was very slight indeed, as I mentioned I wasnt wearing glasses. But to look at Warfare you need S2, or S1 for aircrew. So I was advised I could look at laser eye surgery, provided I went for the surgery method approved by the RN.

Most laser surgery is Lasik (where they cut into the surface of your eye to alter the shape). But the RN prefers the less invasive Epi-Lasik (where they only lift the surface to alter the shape). And unfortuatley the EL is more painful and slow to recover! This costs around £1500 for both eyes.

Then the RN require you to wait for 12 months to see if the eye has healed okay. They also require at AIB stage to see regular eye tests performed at 1 month, 6 months and 12 months post surgery. I should expect that they also perform thier own test at AIB stage, or at least require you to take another test at this stage, if it doesnt coincide with the 12 month one.

This was probably more in depth than you were looking for, but I thought I'd be thorough!



Im going to raleigh in 2 weeks so ive past the eye exam. but i do need glasses to see at distance.. could i get laser eye done while im in the navy?
Hi k800i,

I dont know about once you're in, I know it all depends on what branch and obviously on the astigmatism etc. The best people to answer these questions is the Central Air Admiralty Medical Board (CAAMB). Your ACLO should be able to provide you with the phone number, and the chap I spoke to was Cheif PO Yates, although it might vary depnding on location. When I called he knew a lot about procedures etc for eye surgery.

Hope it helps,



I personally cant understand why people want laser eye surgery, just wear contacts, unless you cant. You can even buy new contacts now that you wear for a month at a time and you dont need to take them out at night.

I suppose there may be mixed opinions but people worrying, and suggesting laser surgery is a good waste of 1500 quid, afterall give it a few years and you will most likely need specs again. Only my opinion.

Hi Mike,

You're quite right, I wouldnt have had it done normally. But the RN require a certain standard of vision sans any correction (glasses or lenses), so it was simply get the surgery or forget it old boy!



you can get it done for 395 per eye. and id rather have perfect 20/20 vision for life with no hassle with contacts/glasses


Lantern Swinger
Ok...on the subject of Medicals...

In April this year i feel awkwardly on my shoulder, i thought nothing of it and although it was painful i ignored it as i assumed it would mend itself...

So i proceeded with my application, FATs etc and now i have my final meeting on Thursday before my AIB on 10th Dec.

However, a few weeks ago i thought i best at least get it checked out, so i went to doctors, got referred to osteopath had 4 sessions then got referred to Specialist, which i am waiting for my appointment for (should be max of about a week as im private). Now my osteopath thinks i have some possible ligament damage and he thinks i may need a steroid injection in order to help it heal. However he isn't the specialist so doesn't really know.

So do i, mention it in my interview on Thursday? Mention it at AIB medical etc etc? Thing is it doesn't hurt that much i still do all my usual stuff, just sometimes it can be slightly painful, but i guess as im applying for Pilot position your all going to tell me to come clean and even though it may mean postponing my entry etc its the right thing to do. I hope you dont say this as i've been applying for this for a year, sticking out my unbelieveably boring job because i knew that one day i had a chance of getting out of it.

Hi Nat,

Tricky one!

If it makes you feel any better when I had my surgery, my ACLO told me that if I hadnt mentioned eye surgery to him, I wouldnt have to wait 12 months!

I dont think anyone can give you advice to the effect of hiding any medical conditions or ailments. The only thing is that the RN will ask you, and test you to find out anything they NEED to know. If it doesnt come out in that process, I wouldnt worry. But alas I am not experienced in this, as I havent got to the stage you're at yet!



War Hero
The "Textbook" answer is that you are obliged to disclose whether you have had to attend your GP's or are receiving any medical treatment when you have your medical examination.

You need to be aware that if any previously undisclosed medical condition comes to light within the first 56 days of training, that it is subsequently revealed that you knew about, but failed to disclose during your medical examination (Not during your ACLO interview) then you maybe medically discharged.

You probably already know all that, but, tiresome as it may be, them's the rules.


Lantern Swinger
Ok Ninja,

So lets say i disclose im having my shoulder looked at in my medical. Will that be it? Will they chuck me out then and have to wait a year before re-applying. Im not really sure on the rules.

Or will they contact me GP/Specialist? In which case lets say i (theoretically) pass AIB and get given a date of say... July (for example). Lets say i tell them about my shoulder in medical and they contact my GP who says my shoulder will be fine by April....what happens then?!

If you cant give me a theoretical answer (which i know is difficult as you prob dont want to say something and then the opposite happen and me hold it against you,which i wouldnt im just wondering thats all) dont worry i will ask on Thursday!


War Hero
To be honest, much as I hate talking in cliches, the only person qualified to give you an answer on that is the Medical Officer- I know that's not what you want to hear, but it's the truth.

To give you a hypothetical scenario: Generally speaking anyone joining the services must be passed "Fit for Entry" before they may start training, and free from any treatment, be it physiotherapy, outpatients or medication.

I know it's a "Catch 22" but the Medical Officer simply doesn't want you to hinder your recovery, nor do they wish to prevent you joining & it would be possibly foolhardy joining with an injury & then making it worse in training. To give yourself the best chance of successfully completing training you need to be free from injury.

Hope that helps put it into perspective- trust me I'm not intentionaly being obstructive, just pragmatic.



As osteopath cannot diagnose anything - contrary to what many say, they are not doctors or specialists. I am very surprised your GP referred you to one in the first place! Physiotherapy has some role in such conditions, but if there is a significant problem then you should be assessed by an orthopaedic surgeon. Therefore, unless a proper doctor has given you a diagnosis, I don't see why you should disclose anything the osteopath told you - he is not qualified to give that, or any, opinion.

Is your shoulder giving you difficulty? Can you do pressups, does it limit your activity or exercise in any way? If not then I wouldn't worry. If it does, go back to your GP and request referral to orthopaedics. Osteopaths are very good at crunching things around but there is absolutely no evidence of benefit from any of their treatments.


Lantern Swinger
A chap I went to the AIB with had been in a serious hit and run 3 years ago. He was in hospital for 6 months, suffered several broken bones and had the world's creakiest knees. He passed the medical.
What I am trying to say is that only the Doc at the AIB can decide whether you pass or fail.


War Hero
angrydoc said:

As osteopath cannot diagnose anything - contrary to what many say, they are not doctors or specialists. I am very surprised your GP referred you to one in the first place!

.....Osteopaths are very good at crunching things around but there is absolutely no evidence of benefit from any of their treatments.

Again, I'm not qualified to advise in this area, other than relate what is written on the (AFCO Form 5) Application Form Information & Guidance Booklet, but to back up what you say: I was referred to an Osteopath by an RN Medical Officer in Denmark whilst on STANAFORCHAN (Minesweepers), with the usual sore back after rough weather.

Didn't do any good, other than make the bones crunch impressively as you say & a Casevac home after "treatment".
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