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Anticoagulants and Commercial Driving

Topic 1893 | Page 1

Way the Hell North, NH
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 169
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2 years, 2 months ago
11 months, 2 weeks ago

Hello all ,

Returning the truckingtruth after a long time away . Still considering/researching the career choice but had a medical issue this last July . I was hit with a multiple Pulmonary Embolism [ arterial blood clots in both lungs ]. Needless to say it hurt like hell and I thought I was a dead man . Anyway , after a battery of testing there is nothing in my current/previous lifestyle or medical history which suggests a conclusive reason for getting the clots and I anticipate a lifetime of taking Warfarin, and anticoagulant which keeps my INR levels at a recommended range to prevent future clots [hopefully].

Has anyone had to deal with this medication or know of anyone in this same situation that currently maintains a CDL-A and currently drives .

~Schism~

Marietta, GA
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 70
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1 year ago
11 months, 2 weeks ago

There is a pretty informative document on DOT's website you might be interested in. I am not familiar with Warfarin but it is mentioned in this document. Good luck to you. I hope it works out for you.

Cardiovascular Disease And Commercial Motor Vehicle Driver Safety

Moderator
Attica, NY
Experienced Driver
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11 months, 2 weeks ago

Hey thanks for that link Richard! Much appreciated!

Schism, I'm not familiar with your specific situation but you can call any doctor that gives DOT physicals (assuming yours doesn't) and they will let you know if that drug is acceptable for commercial driving or not. As long as it doesn't impair your mind or senses then they'll let you drive while taking it.

Way the Hell North, NH
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 169
Joined Us:
2 years, 2 months ago
11 months, 2 weeks ago

Thanks for link Richard , thanks for the DOT physician tip Brett .

I read through that fmvcs url a few days ago . Having just a single PE event in a medical history is not a disqualifying event and neither is warfarin therapy from what I have learned so far .

I was just hoping to find a driver or someone who knows one who is successfully driving to determine any resistance prior to proceeding with attempt at a commercial driving lifestyle .

To my knowledge companies often impose their own standards above and beyond government regulations . It appears that living in NH means my company sponsored training options are limited due to hiring areas already [ Sage could be AZ residence only , another carrier is TX and Central Refrigerated does not hire in NH etc ] so I was trying to get more information .

Thanks again . ~S~

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Joined Us:
11 months, 2 weeks ago
11 months, 2 weeks ago

I'm not a physician, but an EMT and my wife is a RN. Yes, you should consult a physician for your answer. Long term periods of staying in one position aren't good for your circulation, regardless of if you're on medication. I would recommend asking a physician if they feel that compression stockings/socks would be beneficial. Of course, every chance you could get you should make it a priority to walk around.

Anticoagulants, like warfarin/coumadin, thin your blood (in layman's terms) to keep the blood from coagulating or clotting. Even while on those medicines, you can develop a clot or DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis). Of course the threat is that the clot would travel and occlude blood flow in the heart, the brain, or at the lungs; which can be life threatening causing a stroke, cardiac arrest or respiratory arrest. Aspirin works different to help circulation. It's not actually a blood thinner, but it coats the blood cells to help prevent them from sticking together. Never start or stop a medication without consulting your physician.

As long as you pass the DOT physical and the employer has no issue with your medical history, I imagine that you could have a fulfilling career in driving, but you may just need to stay on top of your condition. Between your pre-trip inspection, stopping 25 miles into your trip to check your load, restroom and meal breaks, and getting to your destination you can probably get the exercise you need to keep your blood flowing.

An interesting bit of useless knowledge: warfarin is used in rat poison in high doses to cause them to bleed out. :)

Central, MO
Rookie Solo Driver
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10 months, 1 week ago

I too suffered from the same condition. I am a lifetime member of the coumadin club. Some companies ran scared once I told them (for their own reasons). But I am currently driving for a major company that understands the medication and knows that I can handle the balancing act of proper dosage and INR results. Therefore, what I am saying that its possible to do. Just take care of yourself and maintain your diet discipline and whatever else you were instructed to do and you should be fine.

Way the Hell North, NH
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 169
Joined Us:
2 years, 2 months ago
10 months, 1 week ago

Thanks for the replies everyone .

Thanks Tman !! I learned that its not a big deal generally speaking ie: Not a DOT disqualifying medication but its good to hear from someone in the industry is out there getting his butt outta the seat every 3-4 hrs like its a matter of health , and who has to stick a finger every week and take a test .

As far as taking care of the INR and staying mentally aware of not being sedentary for more than 3-4 hours at a time its all easy research . Like I posted previously I did not have any of the known criteria for having a blood clot so the chance of recurrence is very very low . Staying on coumadin just reduces that even farther .

When I went for the DOT card/physical I had 90 days of INR levels and my script for the meds and the Dr never bothered to look at either , and that was after I explained the whole ordeal I went through in July . I've got my 2 year card and look forward to school in January .

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