Waiver denied because of High blood pressure + tachycardia

Hello everyone.

I've been training for AFSPECWAR for over a year now, went to MEPS and the medic there told me I would need a waiver for tachycardia. As I would discover, I naturally have a higher blood pressure than most people but it's still not hypertension. The highest I've got was 147/103 and I'm sure its stress related because at home it averages around 127/85. My cardiologist also said that I'm good for military duty. I recently received the news that I got disqualified based on my high blood pressure. my recruiter told me that if I wanted another shoot I would need to prove that I don't have high BP, and as of now my application has been closed. I'll be contacting a special warfare recruiter to see if I can submit another medical waiver. Has anyone with high BP been through this?


Staff member
You need to find out exactly what medical condition they are disqualifying you for. Hypertension is not a DQ'ing condition for Special Warfare. And even if it was, it comes with caveats that if controlled with an approved drug and below 140/90 then you are GTG. If your hypertension requires 3 or more drugs to control, then you are DQ'd.

Check out our medical eligibility page here: https://afspecialwarfare.com/medical-eligibility/
Go to the MSD and check out section H50 through H58.


Staff member
The 3 or more has an additional 'or' element of "Hypertension requiring three or more medications or associated with changes in any organ system " Thus the emphasis on exactly what is causing the disqualification. Not specifically addressed is age of the individual has influences on the potential of changes being present in any organ system. In regard of organ system those lacking medical background don't often know how many organs the body has. For example the skin is largest organ of the human body. However, the organs of most concern relevant to high BP are the brain, heart, eye, and liver.

Although H-50 provides some insight into "Unequivocal impairment of renal function" other disqualification conditions attributable to high blood pressure requires a bit of anatomy and physiology knowledge. For example: I116-Cirrhosis of the liver, if subspecialty follow-up is required or if there are complications, to include abnormal liver function. Both high and low blood pressure have consequences effecting Portal Blood Pressure in the liver.

Low blood pressure from trauma induced shock causes liver failure. High blood pressure of 140/90 and higher potentially causes Portal hypertension.

Portal hypertension is high blood pressure in the portal vein, which supplies the liver with blood from the intestine and spleen. Portal hypertension may be due to increased blood pressure in the portal blood vessels, or resistance to blood flow through the liver. Portal hypertension can lead to the growth of new blood vessels (called collaterals) that connect blood flow from the intestine to the general circulation, bypassing the liver. When this occurs, substances that are normally removed by the liver pass into the general circulation. Symptoms of portal hypertension may include:
  • Ascites
  • Development of varicose veins. Varicose veins (esophageal varices) develop most commonly at the lower end of the esophagus and in the stomach lining, although they can develop anywhere from the mouth to the anus.
Tachycardia introduces problem of the heart can only beat so long at a too fast rate until heart muscle fatigue causes a misfire situation among the four chambers of the heart (pump) leading to cardiac arrest. So too fast of a rate in a at rest state that becomes faster during physically demanding activity is a legitimate safety in performance and ability limiting concern.
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