What You Need to Bring to a DOT Physical Exam

Physical Exam
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What is a DOT physical?

Department of Transportation (DOT) physicals are required for all commercially licensed drivers. If you want a career driving large commercial vehicles, you’ll need a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and a valid DOT medical card. This card can only be obtained after you successfully pass a DOT physical exam. DOT physicals will be required every 1-2 years.

What do I need to bring to a DOT physical?

In addition to your valid driver’s license, you also need to bring:

  • Your medical records from your family doctor.
  • Medical records from any specialists you see.
  • A complete list of all your prescription medicines.
  • Visual and auditory aids like prescription glasses, contact lenses, and hearing aids that you use while driving. You’re allowed to wear these during vision and hearing assessments.
  • If you have diabetes, you’ll need a record of your blood sugar readings and your most recent Hgb A1C.
  • If you have sleep apnea, bring at least 90 days of data from your CPAP machine.
  • If you have heart issues, you’ll need a letter from your cardiologist saying you’re safe to drive a DOT vehicle. You may also need the results of a recent stress test, ECHO cardiogram, or other tests within the past 1-2 years.
  • If you’ve had a stroke, brain tumor, seizure disorder, or bleeding in the brain, you’ll need a letter from your neurologist.

You’ll also need to complete the FMCSA medical examination report form before or after the exam. Consider printing and completing it before going to your exam.

What does the DOT physical consist of?

  • Physical exam – The doctor will check your eyes, ears, mouth, throat, heart, lungs, abdomen, spine, extremities, and neurological system for signs of injuries, impairments, or any potential problems.
  • Vision test – You don’t need perfect 20/20 vision, but you must have at least 20/40 vision in both eyes – with or without glasses or contact lenses. You’ll also need a minimum peripheral vision of 70” in both eyes.
  • Hearing test – You must be able to hear a “forced whisper” from five feet away – with or without hearing aids.
  • Blood pressure check – You’ll meet the DOT requirements if your blood pressure is 140/90 or below. If it’s between 140/90 and 179/109, you may need to have a medical exam more frequently or be given a temporary medical card.    
  • Urine test – This test looks for any underlying conditions like diabetes.
  • Sleep apnea test – If you have symptoms of drowsiness during the day, headaches in the morning, heavy snoring, or gasping while sleeping, you may need a sleep apnea test.

Integrity Urgent Care Offers DOT Physicals

The DOT physical is straightforward and nothing to worry about. Our doctors will ensure you are healthy enough to safely operate a large commercial vehicle. Integrity Urgent Care, part of the Xpress Wellness family, is a Texas-based healthcare provider that treats non-life-threatening illnesses and injuries for patients of all ages. We have on-site x-rays, offer a worker’s compensation injury evaluation and treatment, employee health services including DOT physicals and drug testing, and can test for Strep, RSV, COVID-19, STDs, and pregnancy. Find a location near you and walk in or check-in online.

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