Can I get an opinion on enlisting?

Discussion in 'Publicly and Privately Funded Military Colleges' started by isue38011, Aug 28, 2018.

  1. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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    Hi y’all,

    I’m a senior that’s applying to Virginia Tech, and I’m pretty sure I’ll get in, so as I was speaking to my counselor the other day, it was brought to my attention that my recent inhaler I got last year for “precautionary purposes” when I ran cross country could greatly decrease my chances of becoming an officer when it’s time to request a waiver since I will be disqualified.

    She suggested enlisting in the Army Reserves to not only lighten the cost of tuition to in-state tuition (as I’m from Texas) and to have an easier time commissioning. She said they’re a bit more relaxed with inhalers given at such an “old” age when people enlist and I wouldn’t have to apply for a waiver through DoDMERB, as I would already be in the service.

    Is this true? Does anyone have any thoughts on this?
     
  2. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    OP: Enlisting and serving your country is an honorable thing to do. In my opinion, it is not an easier approach to commissioning as an officer. However well intentioned, I am not sure your Counselor is necessarily the best person to get advice on commissioning in the Military.

    I recommend you speak with an Army Officer Selection Officer (OSO) in regards to your options. You might even call Va Tech to discuss their thoughts on options.

    But if the root of your post is around inhalers and entry into the military then I suggest you use Google to find the medical standards and familiarize yourself with them. You can also search this forum for "inhalers" and see what others have posted.
     
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  3. New@This

    New@This Member

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    Enlisted and officers will have similar medical qualifications although they are handled by different government departments. I would think if you encounter difficulties with DODMERB you might have similar difficulties enlisting.
     
  4. MidCakePa

    MidCakePa Member

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    To build on @USMCGrunt’s point, let the Army tell you whether or not you’re DQ, not your college counselor. Well-intentioned as she may be, she is not DODMERB or the waiver-review committee. She does not have the final word. If your goal is to become an officer via ROTC, then take that path as far as you can. Enlisting is a very different path that may or may not get you where you want to be, but it should be a distant backup at this point.
     
  5. AJC

    AJC Member

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    Where you diagnosed with asthma?
     
  6. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator

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    Just to clarify the service related terminology, the Army ROTC equivalent of a USMC OSO is called an AROTC enrollment officer, or Recruiting Operations Officer (ROO). They are based at the AROTC office usually on a college campus.

    I believe that most USMC OSO's are not based on campus.
     
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  7. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    Thanks AROTC. I was in a hurry and didn't take the time to provide the proper Army role description.
     
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  8. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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    Never officially. I received a few inhalers to treat bronchitis when I got it as a young kid (before 13). My new doctor gave me a pulmonary functions test anyway to check up on me which I did very well on. He said the chance was extremely low of it flaring up, but that he wouldn’t want to risk it because of my history of bronchitis and because I was starting a new sport that was quite physically intensive. I took the inhaler anyway, unaware that it would affect me later on, but I never needed it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2018
  9. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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    I wasn’t sure. I’ve had friends who have enlisted that got inhalers and a history of asthma as late as 18, submitted medical history and took several spirometer tests and got waivers when they joined the reserves, and I’ve seen cadets get kicked out for having one inhaler at 14.
     
  10. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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  11. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator 10-Year Member

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    Hi!

    DODMERB will use the standards of DODI 6130.03, May 2018, which you can find easily with a quick search online.

    Here's the part on lungs; not all of it, but a part you should read and then discuss with your physician.

    5.10. LUNGS, CHEST WALL, PLEURA, AND MEDIASTINUM. a. Any abnormal findings on imaging or other examination of body structure, such as the lungs, diaphragm, or other thoracic or abdominal organs, unless the findings have been evaluated and further surveillance or treatment is not required.
    b. Current abscess of the lung or mediastinum.
    c. Infectious pneumonia within the last 3 months.
    d. History of recurrent (2 or more episodes within an 18 month period) infectious pneumonia after the 13th birthday.
    e. History of airway hyper responsiveness including asthma, reactive airway disease, exercise-induced bronchospasm or asthmatic bronchitis, after the 13th birthday.
    (1) Symptoms suggestive of airway hyper responsiveness include but are not limited to cough, wheeze, chest tightness, dyspnea or functional exercise limitations after the 13th birthday.
    (2) History of prescription or use of medication (including but not limited to inhaled or oral corticosteroids, leukotriene receptor antagonists, or any beta agonists) for airway hyper responsiveness after the 13th birthday.

    Your doctor will have to tell you yes or no for the paperwork. And then DODMERB will take it from there. I know of NO "double standard" for officer/enlisted members in the service when it comes to medical reviews. Each service does have its own medical branch and they do have their own standards for waiver, etc. So it's possible one service might waive something that another would not. I have seen that personally with concussion.

    Hope this helps a little.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  12. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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    Hi! Thank you, I’m just a little confused. What do you mean, my doctor will tell me yes or no? To what, exactly? To a more current evaluation, or just in general according to my medical history?
     
  13. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator

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    I believe that Colonel Steve ( @flieger83 ) is referring to the completion of the DoDMERB questionnaire. In other words, your physician should give you guidance on whether to check the "yes" or "no" box on each question as he describes.

    You won't receive the DoDMERB questionnaire unless you are substantially through the application process for an Academy or ROTC scholarship.

    You should also read this thread.
    https://www.serviceacademyforums.co...xcercise-induced-asthma-immuno-therapy.63339/
     
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  14. isue38011

    isue38011 New Member

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    That was very helpful! Thank you so much.
     
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