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  • Family medical history

    I'm assuming when taking a physical/health exam to get on with a department, you fill out a questionnaire that has questions asking about family history of certain illnesses/disorders.

    I have yet to go through the hiring process with any department yet, but plan to start soon. My situation is that my dad had poly-cystic kidney disease (which is hereditary) and received a kidney transplant several years ago around the age of 46 or 47 (he's doing great now, btw). I have yet to be diagnosed with such a thing, as I haven't had any tests done. However, I do have borderline high blood pressure, which has been that way since I was probably 15 or 16. Most people who have the kidney disease have symptoms of high blood pressure. So, I may simply have elevated blood pressure due to stress or genes, or, it may be tied to something more serious.

    I'm looking for some insight on to how this would potentially play out... Having a family health questionnaire, which probably has a question about family history of high blood pressure (questions on kidney disease, I don't know. Do you?) and then seeing my blood pressure elevated, what sort of action would you see them taking? I figure the BP thing is treatable and not that much of a problem, but I don't know if they would want me to get tests done to see if I have PKD? I guess it's all dependent on if the questionnaire has a question about family history with kidney disease, eh? Or, if the physician wants to ask where the high blood pressure comes from, in regards to my father (his was high BP was PKD related)...?

    This is pretty much the only thing I'm nervous about, when it comes to trying to get a job in LE. I feel like I can I prove myself worthy of a job in every other way, it's just this one hiccup I'm really sweating.
    Last edited by concon02; 06-23-2010, 02:20 AM.

  • #2
    One - You probably won't want to lie on any portion of your application. This is dishonest (red flag) and if you conceal information like this the departments health insurance MAY possibly not cover costs associated with it.

    Two - I personally can't see why simple high BP or PKD (except late stage) would prevent you from fulfilling normal LE duties. Therefore, it would seem discriminatory to fail to hire you, if the decision is solely based on these medical conditions.

    Three - While I understand you may have any number of emotions surrounding PKD or $ issues, I'd recommend getting it checked out.

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    • #3
      One piece of advice for you- Don't mess with High blood pressure. Get that checked and on medication asap. High BP is the silent killer.

      No being on BP medicine will not hurt your chances of being hired. Good Luck
      MDRDEP:

      There are no stupid questions, but there sure are a lot of inquisitive idiots.

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      • #4
        ^ What jcioccke said. If you are a young, fit and otherwise healthy person but have a family history of kidney disease do everything you can to keep your BP at a normal level and get yourself to the doctor regularly. It doesn't really matter WHY you have high blood pressure, having hypertension is a risk factor for kidney disease and cardiovascular disease in general. High BP puts added stress on your heart and kidneys, so get it checked out and medicated if necessary. I'm as guilty as the next guy of thinking this way, but maybe I'm getting a bit wiser as I get older: Ignoring something doesn't mean it isn't there!

        With a family history, get it checked out and squared away before you apply. Why go through the process and then get surprised at the end during a medical? Knowledge is power.

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        • #5
          I can tell you from experience (both firefighting and before I was accepted to an academy), being straight with them is the best course. When I was straight and upfront about my medical history, getting waivers was easy. Had I lied and or not been upfront I have no doubt, I'd have fought an uphill battle, and likely lost (I saw it happen).
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          • #6
            Go here to read about the implecations of high blood pressure in law enforcement jobs and how it is looked at during many pre-employment phyicals http://lib.post.ca.gov/Publications/Cardio.pdf

            Go here for a common applicant medical hostory statement http://lib.post.ca.gov/Publications/2-252.pdf
            Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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