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DOT medical exam ...and hearing test... What did you say?

Topic 954 | Page 1

Started Sept 3rd 2013, GA
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 235
Joined Us:
1 year ago
1 year ago

I have been doing some research on the DOT medicl exam, and I have a question about the forced whisper test. My understanding is the Dr stands behind you, about 5' and whispers a few letters and numbers, or maybe a few words. My concern here, is that I have never passed a hearing test in my life, being mostly deaf in my left ear, and havaing aTinnitus my entire life. How much of a problem is this going to be? Hearing in my right ear is fairly good, and of course, I can a hear Car horn and things of that nature. In the past when I have asked doctors about it, they would put there mouth right next to my ear nad whisper something, nand I have no problems with that, but from 5' and with my good ear covered, I don't stand a chance in my bad ear. To be certain, I just asked my wife to practice for me, and no luck. But what is a forced whisper? Is it louder than a normal whisper, like if you were in a movie theater or something? Or just a regular whisper? Should I head up to wally world and get a hearing aid? Am i allowed to use a hering aid? What else is involved in a DOT medical exam??

I can't see the sense in heading off somewhere for a sponsored class, if I am just going to get turned around and sent home, and from what I red, my exam has to be "current". So I don't wNt tto have to pay dor it twice.

Thanks all

Home State: WA
Posts: 153
Joined Us:
1 year ago
1 year ago

I think you can take it upfront, just go to a health clinic that gives DOT exams and see what happens. My school is changing its policy to require this before admitting students, due to the empty seats left behind after they get in and cannot continue for that reason. You may still have the option of driving intrastate with a CDL if you cannot pass the physical, such as local driving not involving international freight. There are quite a few options there.

Western, NE
Experienced Driver
Posts: 82
Joined Us:
1 year, 3 months ago
1 year ago

Last year, I failed the forced whisper test and the follow up audio booth test. The doctor had to deny my med card renewal and the state of Nebraska suspended my license until I either corrected the problem or relinquished my CDL. A couple of thousand dollars in hearing aids later and a doctor's note allowed me to retake and pass the physical and get my license reinstated.

As a side note... We didn't really have the money and most insurance companies don't cover hearing aids. But, we made it work and I wish I had done it years ago. I'm only 35 years old but have been partially deaf my entire life. Like you, almost completely in the left ear, substantially in the right and that constant, horrible ringing. After getting fitted for quality hearing aids, my quality of life has increased substantially. I used to miss out in all sorts of little things, but now I'm part of the world.

5 Star Advisor
England, AR
Experienced Driver
Posts: 1864
Joined Us:
5 years, 5 months ago
1 year ago

Flatwater answered that pretty well. Either you get hearing aids or don't get your CDL. Even staying in state to drive most companies now are starting to make their drivers get DOT physicals now.

Uvalde, TX
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 194
Joined Us:
1 year, 1 month ago
11 months, 3 weeks ago

As I have stated in other threads, my damaged hearing is perhaps my number one worry in getting into trucking. Well, I received my hearing aids yesterday from my VA doctor at no expense to me and for that I am thankful. While there, I asked the audiologist about the forced whisper test, and he demonstrated it to me without hearing aids on. I could actually make out what he whispered, but I was looking right at him as the test is actually given with the doctor to one side. Even so I can tell you, with the hearing aids on, I will be able to hear a forced whisper without trouble, as the amplification can be turned up even higher on these things. Now I have one less thing to worry about myself. When I walked outside the clinic, I was amazed at the things I was hearing that I did not notice before. Birds singing, cicadas, the car door open alarm, etc. These things are indeed life changing.

Glen Mills, suburb of Philly, PA
Considering A Career
Posts: 96
Joined Us:
1 year ago
11 months, 3 weeks ago

good-luck.gif Hey Tim congrats on getting your hearing aid. I hope your quality of life improves from here on.

Started Sept 3rd 2013, GA
Rookie Solo Driver
Posts: 235
Joined Us:
1 year ago
11 months, 3 weeks ago

I took my hearing test the other day, and the audiologist said I have great hearing .... in my right hear. Nearly deaf in the left. Got fitted for a hearing aid, and it should be in early next week. I probably don't need it to pass the forced whisper test, as they allow you to use your 'better' ear.

Quite frankly though, I'm tired of not being able hear and I'm hopeful that the majority of the ringing goes away.

I was real pleased with my audiologist, she even gave me a glimmer of hope, when she mentioned that sometimes the bones in the ear get dislodged or broken, leading to the bad hearing I have, and did a secondary test to check. Sadly, I just have bad hearing.

With everything coming together, I'm hoping to choose a company / school in the next week or two, and start classes by the 1st of September.

I answered the question of a "what is a forced whisper test" in another post, but for those reading, you stand behind a person at least 5 feet, expel all the air from your lungs, and 'whisper' 2 or 3 two syllable words. If they can repeat the words, they will pass the test. Also, you are allowed to have the whisperer stand on the side of your 'better' ear. I think you might even be able to turn your head slightly, to use the 'better ear'. I also read that some testers will have you push in the targus of your other ear to close it up. The targus is the flap over the ear canal. They might even have you rub circles over the tarsus with your finger to simulate background noise.

Peace

Moderator
Plymouth, WA
Experienced Driver
Posts: 2289
Joined Us:
3 years, 8 months ago
11 months, 3 weeks ago

You guys just make me glad I'm here and helping when and where I can...Everyone has a fear of losing one of the 5 senses...mine is hearing. I don't know why its that important to me...its just my "thing". It may be because I depend on it so much hunting...oh...and we have rattle snakes here !!! You guys keep us updated on your schooling,...and I wanna hear about your Adventures !!!!

Posts: 1
Joined Us:
11 months, 1 week ago
11 months, 1 week ago

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