Accession Number : ADA392942


Title :   Association of Postmortem Blood Hemoglobin A1c Levels With Diabetic Conditions in Aviation Accident Pilot Fatalities


Descriptive Note : Final rept.


Corporate Author : FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION OKLAHOMA CITY OK CIVIL AEROMEDICAL INST


Personal Author(s) : White, V L ; Chaturvedi, A K ; Canfield, D V ; Garber, M


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a392942.pdf


Report Date : Jul 2001


Pagination or Media Count : 7


Abstract : The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA's) Office of Aerospace Medicine evaluates present and proposed medical certification standards for pilots. Under this responsibility, the FAA Civil Aerospace Medical Institute investigates the role of potential medical-or drug-related performance impairment in pilots. In previous research, abnormal glucose levels in vitreous humor (125 mg/dL) and urine (100 mg/dL) have been linked with diabetic conditions in pilots of fatal aviation accidents. Although these abnormal glucose levels identify pilots with elevated blood sugar at the time of death, they do not provide information on how well diabetes was controlled in these pilots. Since post-crash factors (trauma, stress, medical intervention) can dramatically affect blood glucose levels, a measure of long-term diabetic control was sought for postmortem specimens. Methods. Blood specimens from volunteers were collected and stored at room temperature for up to 52 days to mimic a postmortem condition. These specimens were analyzed for hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) at selected time intervals during the 52-day period. Postmortem blood specimens from 34 aviation accident pilot fatalities were also analyzed. Some of these pilots had a known history of diabetes. Results. HbA1c values in blood from volunteers did not significantly change for up to 52 days. The HbA1c concentration in postmortem blood samples from pilots ranged from 3.9-10.5%. Only one pilot with a HbA1c over 6.0% did not have a history of diabetes reported to the FAA. Conclusions. HbA1c is stable in whole blood stored at room temperature for 52 days and appears to be stable in postmortem blood stored up to 84 days. HbA1c above 6.0% was found to be generally correlated with a known history of diabetes and with the abnormal vitreous humor and urine glucose levels established previously. Elevated postmortem HbA1c levels may be useful in supporting determinations of medical impairment/incapacitation in transportation accidec


Descriptors :   *PILOTS , *AVIATION ACCIDENTS , *HEMOGLOBIN , *DIABETES , TIME INTERVALS , PERFORMANCE(HUMAN) , SAMPLING , DEATH , URINE , GLUCOSE , TOXICOLOGY , ACCIDENT INVESTIGATIONS , BLOOD CHEMISTRY


Subject Categories : Military Aircraft Operations
      Biochemistry
      Medicine and Medical Research


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE