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ear, nose and throat disorders and flying

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  • recent middle-ear surgery - flying is contraindicated for 10 to 14 days (1)
  • dental surgery - flying is contraindicated for 2 to 5 days
  • otitis media - flying is contraindicated (2)
  • acute or chronic sinusitis - flying is contraindicated (2)
  • recent tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy - flying is permitted once risk of bleeding abated
  • upper respiratory tract infection - relative contraindication to flying.

Note that these are only guidelines and each airline has its own regulations and medical standards.


  1. Doctor (April 2005). Ready Reckoner - fitness to fly.
  2. 'Medical guidelines for air travel', Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine, October 1996, 67, 10, 11.


General Practice Notebook
General Practice Notebook
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