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Medical Exam

Attention Candidates- In order to be considered for the DoDMERB medical portion of the application, Admissions must receive at minimum your high school transcript, official SAT/ACT scores AND passing Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA).


A candidate for admission to the Academy must be in good medical condition and must meet the requirements for an Appointment as a U.S. Navy Reserve midshipman. Medical examinations are conducted by a service academy examining facility designated by the U.S. Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board (DODMERB), and a final decision on a candidate's physical and medical qualifications is made by that board. All candidates must be physically and medically qualified by DoDMERB for an Appointment.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The CFA (Candidate Fitness Assessment) is not the same as the DoDMERB medical exam. Passing CFA scores must be received by the Admissions Office no later than the 1 March application deadline (refer to the section in this website that provides information on the CFA).


Beginning with the Class of 2021 Candidates- In order to be considered for the DoDMERB medical portion of the application, the Admissions Office must receive at minimum your high school transcript, official SAT/ACT scores AND passing Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA). It is the candidate's responsibility to pursue medical processing in a timely manner to its conclusion. Failing to disclose pre-existing medical conditions that you were aware of which are discovered after reporting to the USMMA may result in medical separation and you may be ineligible for readmission.


A candidate must have minimum uncorrected visual acuity of 20/400 in each eye, correctable to 20/20 in each eye. The refractive error to correct the vision to 20/20 must not be greater than plus or minus 6.0 diopters in any meridian; there cannot be more than 3.00 diopters of astigmatism present; and the maximum difference in power between the eyes may not exceed 3.50 diopters. The candidate must satisfactorily pass the pseudoisochromatic plate test (PIP). Any prospective candidate who has been diagnosed with substandard color vision is not eligible for further consideration. Upon reporting to the Academy, all plebes are subject to an eye examination. Those who fail to meet the Academy's visual requirements at that time will be disenrolled


Auditory acuity of all candidates is determined by an audiometer. The standards for hearing, to which the Academy ascribes, are determined by the U.S. Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board.

Height and Weight

All applicants must meet the Navy body composition standards in accordance with the OPNAV Instruction 6110.1J, Physical Readiness Program.  Please see Table 1 in the Navy Body Composition Assessment (BCA) guide for maximum limits.

Weight and Body Fat

Each student at the Academy is required to meet and maintain the standards of the Department of the Navy's Merchant Marine Reserve, U.S. Naval Reserve (MMR, USNR) program for midshipmen. Determination of a candidate's physical status is based on weight in relation to height and, if required, on body fat percentage.

The maximum body fat percentages are 22 percent for men and 33 percent for women. A body fat percentage is not required for candidates whose weight falls within the parameters set forth in Table 1 in the Navy Body Composition Assessment (BCA) guide. For those candidates whose weight exceeds the maximum for their height, a body fat measurement will subsequently be taken using the circumference (tape measure) method. Candidates who do not meet the established medical requirements for admission at the time of their medical examination may still be considered for and offered a conditional appointment. Candidates are expected to report for the Academy's Indoctrination Program meeting the height-weight standards.

Heart and Vascular System

An electrocardiogram is required of all candidates. The following conditions may be causes for rejection and require complete medical evaluation: all organic valvular diseases of the heart, including those improved by surgery; EKG evidence of variations from normal heartbeat; hypertension evidenced by a predominant blood pressure reading of 140mm or more systolic, or 90mm or more diastolic. The following are causes for rejection: varicose veins, if severe or symptomatic; a heart rate greater than 100 on repeated examination; a substantiated history of rheumatic fever within the previous two years; recurrent attacks of rheumatic fever or evidence of residual cardiac damage; a history of recurring rapid heartbeat within the preceding five years (paroxysmal tachycardia).


Septal deviation, hypertrophic rhinitis, or other conditions which result in 50 percent or more obstruction of either airway, or which interfere with the drainage of sinus on either side, are causes of rejection.


Chronic skin diseases such as severe acne or eczema or unsightly congenital markings are cause for disqualification. Pilondial sinus, if evidenced by the presence of mass or discharging sinus, is cause for rejection. Pilondial cyst surgery within the past year is disqualifying.

Genitourinary System

Persistent or recurrent albuminuria of any type or the persistence of casts in the urine will be cause for rejection, even though the etiology cannot be determined. Other causes for rejection include marked phimosis, epispadias, or pronounced hypospadias; atrophy, deformity, or maldevelopment of both testicles; an undescended testical of any degree. Bed-wetting past age 12 is disqualifying.

Neurological Examination

A history of motion sickness (e.g., air, sea, swing, train or carnival ride) should be thoroughly investigated. A history of head injury in the past five years resulting in unconsciousness must be completely evaluated and an electroencephalogram is required. Evidence of degenerative disorders and such conditions as established migraine is cause for rejection.


Asthma, recurrent asthmatic bronchitis or exercise-induced bronchospasms, by diagnosis or history, is cause for rejection. Abdominal Wall Examination Hernia of any type is disqualifying until corrected; history of operation for hernia within the past 60 days is disqualifying. Other abnormal diseases and conditions which are not acceptable include stomach or small bowel ulcer or a history of one; acute or chronic gall bladder disease; removal of spleen for reason other than trauma.

Miscellaneous Medical Disqualifications

Other medical reasons for disqualification include Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD); acute communicable diseases; anemia; abnormal bleeding states; learning disabilities; diabetes mellitus or a history of diabetes in both parents; persistent sugar in urine regardless of cause; ununited fractures; a history of surgery to a major joint within the past six months; knee ligament surgery or a history of derangement of a knee joint not corrected by surgery, or evidence of instability subsequent to surgery; total loss of either thumb; tuberculosis active in the past five years; hay fever, if severe, or a record of hyposensitization therapy for severe hay fever during one year prior to examination; nasal polyps; personality disorders; symptomatic immaturity disorders such as stammering or stuttering; arthritis; and herniated nucleus pulposus or a history of operation for this condition. These conditions represent the most common causes of medical disqualification.

Note: Women applicants must also have a pelvic examination and a Pap test, if they are age 22 or older.

All candidates must be medically and physically qualified on the “UNRESTRICTED LINE” level for entry.

Dental Standards

A candidate must have a minimum of 16 natural permanent teeth, of which a minimum of eight must be in each arch. All missing teeth causing unsightly spaces or significantly reducing masticatory or incisal efficiency must be replaced by well-designed bridges or partial dentures which are in good condition. All required dental treatment must be completed prior to final medical qualification.

Disqualifying defects are:

  • lack of satisfactory incisal or masticatory function;
  • less than a minimum of eight natural permanent teeth in each arch;
  • edentulous spaces which are unsightly or which significantly reduce masticatory function;
  • carious teeth, including minor carious areas extending into dentin;
  • infectious or chronic diseases of the soft tissue of the oral cavity;
  • marked malocclusion resulting in severe dentofacial deformity;
  • unsatisfactory restoration, bridges, or dentures;
  • severe or extensive apical or periodontal infection.


Fourth classmen must demonstrate the capability of swimming 100 yards using two basic strokes, and 15 minutes of flotation. Nonswimmers must devote a part of their time to learning basic swimming strokes, and it is therefore recommended that applicants learn to swim before entering the Academy. This requirement must be fulfilled prior to a midshipman's first shipboard training period.

Updated: Wednesday, January 17, 2018
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