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Possible vertigo, will I be able to pass a DOT physical?

Topic 18346 | Page 1

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Lee M.'s Comment
member avatar

Hi Everyone,

I have a question I hope someone can help me with. I had my CDL about 20 years ago and let it go (stupid I know), now I want to get back into trucking and have to jump through all the hoops again.

My question is would I be able to still pass a DOT physical if I had a bout of dizziness about a year and a half ago? I was home at the time and got up from my chair and all of a sudden the room started spinning. My wife panicked and called the ambulance. We get to the ER and the doctors aren't sure what caused it, they say it may have been vertigo. I've never had this happen before or since, but now it's on my medical file that I may have experienced vertigo. They prescribed two meds to take, but I've never taken them and never had to. I'm in great shape other than this incident. Just seeing if anyone has been through something similar and was still able to drive. Thanks in advance.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

We would NEVER TELL ANYONE TO LIE on a DOT Medical Exam.

That being said - one "un-diagnosible case" of the spins a year and a half ago with NO RECURRENCES? Prescribed meds but have NEVER TAKEN THEM?

Were you OK by the time the ambo got there? Were you still "spinning" when you got to the hospital? Were you spinning when you left?

"May have been vertigo" - is a lot different from a DIAGNOSIS OF VERTIGO.

You could have been dehydrated, had an inner ear infection, tired from lack of sleep - there's a MILLION THINGS that could have caused you to get the spins.

IF - you have not had a diagnosis. Had seen an ENT (Ear Nose Throat specialist), and not gotten a diagnosis. Have not had it happen again. Did not take the meds for it.

Do you have ANY OTHER HEALTH CONDITIONS? Are you ON ANY OTHER MEDS (were you at the time - certain meds can give you the spins too - especially BP meds).

I wouldn't worry about it - and since you didn't get AN ACTUAL DIAGNOSIS, I don't know that I'd even mention it. There's a difference between an "ongoing diagnosed vertigo" that resolves itself with meds, or is controlled by meds - and a case of the spins that a hysterical wife drags you to the ER for (that turns out to be NOTHING).

Rick

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Lee M.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the reply Rick.

I definitely wouldn't lie on the DOT exam, but it's been so long since I've taken one, I just wasn't sure if I'd pass one with vertigo on my medical record. I was still dizzy when the medics came and I puked a bit, but once I got to the hospital they did give me something through an IV that made me really tired. They watched me for about an hour or so, did their tests then released me with the prescription. They said all the tests came back fine (CAT scan, MRI) so they said they thought I experienced vertigo. I wasn't on any meds, my blood pressure is normal (I run about 4-5 miles a day) so I was stumped as to what was happening. Anyway, thanks again!

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

As I mentioned.

A one time occurrence of the spins - with clean diagnostic testing and no recurrences, no meds.

Sounds like it might have been an occurrence of BPV - Benign Positional Vertigo.

Could be a symptom of many number of things - but it's not a chronic condition - so I wouldn't worry about it. If it happened MORE THAN ONCE, or 3 or 4 times - or constantly and the only way to manage it was with meds, then it's something to worry about reporting - and typically the meds they give you for it aren't going to be allowed for CDL Drivers.

If I had to report every symptom, of ever illness I might have thought I had - I'd be wheelchair-bound and on disability.

If you DO CHOOSE TO REPORT IT - you are going to have to back it up with a FULL MEDICAL REPORT FROM A SPECIALIST, clearing you to drive (did you follow up with a specialist?) - and it is STILL AT the Company/Medical Examiners discretion whether to issue a Medical Certificate, or allow you employment.

Rick

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Remember - VERTIGO is a SYMPTOM - not a DIAGNOSIS. If no underlying cause was found - then you just got dizzy once.

If you get DIZZY SPELLS I'd worry about it.

If you came off your 5 mile run - didn't properly hydrate, sat down for a few minutes and got up fast, you'd get the spins.

See where I'm going with this?

Rick

Lee M.'s Comment
member avatar

I hear you, thanks again bud I appreciate all the feedback.

-Lee

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