Eczema at USNA

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by usnahopeful09, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. usnahopeful09

    usnahopeful09 Member

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    Hello,

    I know there are a lot of threads here on eczema, but I have a fairly specific question.

    Applying for USNA this year. Have 2 nominations. DoDMERB qualified. Had eczema when I was younger, but gone by 11.

    However, I have heard stories of people whose eczema comes back later on in life, especially in bad weather conditions (e.g. maybe during plebe summer at USNA).

    If something like this happens, and my eczema flares up again right before plebe summer/during my time at USNA, what will happen? Will I automatically be dis-enrolled? Will I be able to get a waiver/some sort of leniency?

    I am asking because I have worked so hard on this, and would hate to see it go if something (fingers crossed) flared up during my time at USNA.

    Thanks to all in advance.
     
  2. pleber16

    pleber16 USNA 2016 5-Year Member

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    From my understanding eczema is one of those hard-line no goes in the eyes of the Navy. I do have a classmate who had it come up spring of our 1/C year. They were allowed to graduate, but did not commission. Generally, if something medical comes up firstie year they will let you graduate without a commission. Before that, you will still go through a very thorough medical review process, but if you're not commissionable they will often let you go.
     
  3. Humey

    Humey Member

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    Not having anyone close to me with eczema, all I know that is that you get red itchy skin. I am sure there is more it than that, but why is the military or rather the academies so negative on it and why is it so hard to get a waiver for it. I am being honest and not criticizing why they do it, rather what is the rationale for it.
     
  4. Skipper07

    Skipper07 Member

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    True, diagnosed eczema is an autoimmune disease that can cause deadly reactions to the small pox vaccine. I assume this is the main reason. Second, a soldier/sailor/airman may not have access to medicine while deployed. Excessively dry or damp conditions can excaberate symptoms to an almost unbearable point. When it goes this far it interferes with performing duties/wearing equipment.
     
  5. handymaninheels

    handymaninheels Member

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    One of my boys had eczema and a sister of mine did too. Here is my advice, stay away from Gluten and your skin will stay clear, no need for any kind of medicated creams at all. Also sugar can be a trigger, so limit that.
     
  6. usna1985

    usna1985 10-Year Member

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    I had a friend who graduated from USNA and was commissioned with active eczema. He had to choose Restricted Line or Staff Corps. It was obviously years ago, so I don't know whether the policy has changed in terms of whether you can be commissioned.
     
  7. usnahopeful09

    usnahopeful09 Member

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    So if I get symptoms of eczema again soon, either before or after I get an appointment (if I do), I guess my question is should I contact USNA about that update? And if so, what will they do? Request a waiver, or just prevent me from going? Does it make a difference if it flares up before or after getting an appointment?

    I’m sorry for all the hypotheticals, I just want to know all the possible scenarios. Thank you all.
     
  8. usnahopeful09

    usnahopeful09 Member

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  9. BDHuff09

    BDHuff09 5-Year Member

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    I understand you're worried, but you generally don't bump a thread that's only been around for less than 24 hours.

    I recieved an eczema waiver to attend USNA. I think a large part of the reason I got that waiver was that I did not (and still don't) need prescription medication. My eczema has also gotten significantly milder as I have gotten older, and it's been years since I've had a significant outbreak. At precommissioning physicals I was told I would get a waiver for every service selection. I have my flight physical coming up soon and am hopeful that they reach the same conclusion.

    I have talked to a few other people at the Academy with eczema. As pleber16 said, one was not permitted to commission. One of my classmates developed moderate eczema 2/C year, and while they were DQ'd from aviation, they will still graduate and serve as a SWO. I know another with mild eczema that is in the middle of TBS right now.

    My advice would be to not lie or try to hide anything, but only go to the doctor to get medicine if it is absolutely necessary to do so. If you can bear it or control it with non-prescription means, than that would be best.
     
  10. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    Every time I see this thread, I can't help but think that the Navy is overly sensitive to skin conditions because Admiral Halsey had to sit out the Battle of Midway due to an extreme case of psoriasis. Sure, eczema at its extreme can be debilitating , but its is usually easily managed. Are the other services so negative ?
     
  11. Pima

    Pima 10-Year Member

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    If the doctor prescribes medicine for a long time, i.e. not a 1 time script, or over the counter, than yes you have to report it because it is a change in your medical status.

    The thing also to understand about eczema is that it can lay dormant for years, mine was dormant for about 20 yrs., my DDs laid dormant for about 7 yrs. It can come back for various reasons, such as diet, or stress. My DD would have flare ups during finals her last 2 yrs of college.

    As others have stated, it can be very annoying to have eczema. I never know when it will flare, there is no symptons until...BAM it is back! The itching during a flare up can cause the sufferer to itch the infected area so badly that the skin will bleed and even with meds it can last for days. Now imagine being deployed and you can't get the meds needed (typically a topical steroid), you than are vulnerable to getting an infection.
    ~ DD as a child had it behind her knees, and elbows. In college it came back on her wrists, and eye lid. Something they (USNA docs) know can occur.

    Additionally, I don't know what career field you dream of currently, but depending on what it is, that can mean you can be out of the game for days. Let's assume you want to fly. The flare up occurs, you go to the flight doc, and now you are what is called DNIF (Duties Not Including Flying). That means they have to put others on the flight schedule to replace you.

    This is the thing when they look at waivers, it is not just about the 4 yrs at the SA, but more importantly the 5 yrs AD.
     
  12. usnahopeful09

    usnahopeful09 Member

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    Thank you for your reply. I haven’t used prescription medication, or seen a doctor for eczema, since 10. And USNA DQ’s for eczema after age 11. So do you advise that if I haven’t used prescription medication since 10, that I wouldn’t report anything to USNA if it flares up again?

    Basically, I guess what I’m asking is what warrants contacting USNA. Any kind of flare up, no matter how minor, or only an episode that requires me to see the doctor/get prescription meds?

    Thank you so much.
     
  13. Skipper07

    Skipper07 Member

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    I believe you will get something called a present health questionaire at some point before reporting. The PHQ will determine whether your health status has changed. I would advise being as honest as possible on this.