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  1. #1
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    Default Conditional Offer this week ? about medical...

    Hello everyone,

    Ive been a cop for about 5 years and I'm finally about to cross over to the other side! This is one time that I'm fairly certain that the grass is "greener" on the other side if you know what I mean?

    Anyways, I'm signing my conditional offer on Wed, and then have to set up my poly, psych, medical, and finish up my background check. Seeing that I've been a cop for 5 years, I'm not anticipating any issues with the background, however, I'm concerned a little about the medical. I use an inhaler, although I've never been actually diagnosed with Asthma. I have allergies to dust mites, pollen, and grass. I normally don't have to use it unless I get a chest cold, or if I know I'm going to go outside and run a few miles, then I'll usually hit it up before I go so there won't be any problems. Ive never been hospitalized for it, and never had any issues. Ive played Lacrosse, football, and baseball my whole life. I'm 31 years old and never had any issues because of it.

    I'm also a little concerned about blood pressure. About a month ago, I had some serious high blood pressure issues going on due to my finalizing my divorce. I have been on medication which has drastically helped to lower it and stablize it. I'm now within normal limits. I'm wondering how concerned should I be with asthma / allergies, and high blood pressure when it comes to the medical screening? Should I be concerned? Will I be disqualified? I have no intentions on lying, but if I know one of these will disqualify me, do you have any suggestions?

    One final question, I have also recently been taking an antidepressant for the past few weeks to help with anxiety. My doc told me that going through a divorce is quite stressful and that this particular medication normally used to treat depression is also used for anxiety as well. Can I be disqualified for taking something like this? I'm a little concerned that this may become an issue for me during the psych test as well. Don't want them to think im nuts...and I'm not sure what to do about this situation. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!

    Thanks from Georgia!!


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber LVFD301's Avatar
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    Default

    Just some thoughts...

    Just because you were/are a cop for 5 years, means very little insofar as a background check. First of course, cops can get charges, and even be found guilty.

    Secondly, the background check can find issues with your personal life that your department may have issues with - such as parties with livestock.

    The background check may find issues with your work history, such as 5 years as a "cop" may really be 5 years as a mall cop.

    The inhaler? What kind of inhaler? Is it prescribed? If prescribed, then you were diagnosed.

    High blood pressure. Now we are talking. Don't kid yourself about the stress of the divorce causing the high blood pressure. Look for the real reason. GET IT CHECKED OUT. If for no other reason than for you to get your job. This can be a real stumbling block on the road to hiring. You say it is under
    control by medication, great, keep on that road. KEEP checking it. Make SURE you keep it under control.

    Antidepressent? In todays time, who cares?

  3. #3
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    Default

    As far as the background check, what I was saying was that I am and have been a cop for the past 5 years, Ive been a Detective, and am now the Assistant Watch Commander / Training Officer. I have no arrests, and nothing in my background which should disqualify me. The livestock parties were all back in college over 11 years ago! I have been taking FD tests for a few years and finally was able to get this far into the process after not giving up. My financial history is the only negative thing that I carry, and that is easily explainanble due to the divorce. Which has already been reviewed and discussed with the background investigator.

    I was not a mall cop, but work for a smaller agency of about 40 officers close to Atlanta.

    I think the blood pressure thing should be ok. From what I've read, alot of people have high blood pressure. What I'm basically asking is, is it a disqualifier when i get to the medical if they find out I have high BP?

    Is it an automatic disqualifier if I am prescribed albuterol as an inhaler? I'm not going to give up, but I'm certainly not going to get my hopes up if the probability of getting hired is slim to none with people that use an inhaler.
    When I was about 5 yeard old, I was diagnosed with allergies as I stated before. Dr. said back then that I may have excersize induced asthma, but he was unsure. Never actually followed up with it. Have used an inhaler off and on since then. I keep one in my duty bag just in case. I have had to use it after a foot chase every now and then, but nothing that incapacitates me to the point where I can perform my job. Its mainly only used when I'm sick and have either the flu, or a chest cold of some sort. Being allergic to dust isnt easy, as it is everywhere. Am I wasting my time with trying to get hired here?

    Really, no sweat off my back either way. Ive always wanted to get into the fire service. Ive been an EMT and enjoyed it! If I'm not hired, then I'm hopefully going to be promoted soon to Sgt at the PD anyways, so I really can't lose either way. I just know that the way of life for a fireman is always better then being a cop anyday! And of course more time off! Great friendships...etc...

  4. #4
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    If this posting is true, everyone of the medical situations you listed can cause concern in the medical and psych.

    I use an inhaler, although I've never been actually diagnosed with Asthma. I have allergies to dust mites, pollen, and grass. . . I normally don't have to use it unless I get a chest cold, or if I know I'm going to go outside and run a few miles, then I'll usually hit it up before I go so there won't be any problems.

    This could cause problems in the academy and once you’re on line fighting fires of all types including grass.

    It will be difficult but not impossible to get cleared with elevated, medicated high blood pressure.

    Depression and anxiety often go hand and glove. Even though you have sought medical attention it could cause problems in what many consider a high stress job.

    Much has changed since the ADA law. I suggest you get an evaluation of this highest medical specialist on your condition in your area. If the doctor finds you fit for duty have them give you a letter. If questions about your condition come up during your medical then, and only then, produce the letter. Often departments will set a base line so if problems come up in the future.

    On a good day up to 40% of candidates fail their psych. You will certainly be asked some difficult questions about anxiety, depression and your divorce. The doc will most likely want to talk to your doctor and look over your medical records. Can they do that? Yep, because you will be asked to sign off your rights to give access.

    An article with tips on preparing for the psych “You have to pass the psych test first time out” is available here on Firehouse.com
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...nId=8&id=51941
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  5. #5
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    Now, im not telling you be dishonest, but I would not mention the inhaler or the anti-depressants. If you do have a problem it will show up in the physical with the stress test most likely. The high blood pressure you cant hide from, that will show up in the physical.
    People pop anti depressants like candy these days, I wouldnt worry too much about that.

  6. #6
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    Default Ok

    A recent candidate had not had a childhood ailment for 14 years. He got a letter from his family doctor stating he was a OK. The situation came up during his medical. He produced the letter. The city doc wanted to run it up the flag pole to a specialist in a big, big city for a second opinion. The candidate got DQ'd. Had he had the letter from his family doc and taken that extra step to see the highest medical specialist in his area and got a letter stating he was fit for duty, he would be heading for the academy right now. Be prepared.
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