Here, you’ll find tips from Doctor Tigges to make your DOT physical exam as quick, simple, and hassle-free as possible.
Also, in our frequently asked questions page, you’ll find answers to questions we hear from drivers about what is required to certify for a CDL medical card and what may cause a driver to fail the DOT physical exam.
DOT Physical Exam: Things to Plan in Advance
If you have a medical condition you’re going to need some paperwork:
- Diabetic Condition – Bring a list of medications and name of prescribing doctor. Diabetic truckers may need to bring in a copy of your blood sugar results or hemoglobin A1C (a test that shows what the average blood sugar level over the past 3 months.)
- High Blood Pressure – Bring a list of medications and name of prescribing doctor.
- Heart Condition – If you’ve had a heart attack or cardiovascular disease, you’ll need to bring a copy of your last stress test or release from your cardiologist.
- Sleep Apnea – Bring a copy of your latest sleep test results, if you have one.
- Medications – List all the prescription medicines you take, including strength and dosage. If you regularly take over-the counter medications, such as antacids or allergy pills, list them, too.
- Contact Information – Have names and phone numbers of your doctors in case you need to call and have them fax missing information.
DOT Physical Exam: Things To Do to Manage Your Blood Pressure:
- Make sure you don’t run out of your prescribed blood-pressure medication.
- Remember to take your medication on schedule. If you forget, most doctors recommend taking your medication as soon as possible.
- If you’re significantly late taking your medication, tell the doctor conducting the DOT physical you forgot to take your regular medication. If your blood pressure is too high, ask to have it rechecked later that day – or even the following day.
- Cutting back on caffeine and nicotine can help improve your blood pressure.
- Reducing the amount of salty foods you eat and avoiding adding salt to your food can also help to lower your blood pressure. (30 percent of idiopathic hypertension [high blood pressure] is related to reduced potassium levels – Ask your physician.)
- Invest in a blood pressure cuff – you would not drive with out gauges working in your truck. A blood pressure cuff is your gauges for your body.
- Cut back on coffee, sodas, energy drinks, potato chips, etc, and don’t add salt to your food. Also reduce your use of nicotine as much as possible. Doing this can help lower your blood pressure reading.
The Day of the DOT Physical Exam:
- Remember to bring the medical records you’ve prepared in advance, including your list of medications.
- Remember to bring eye glasses (it’s surprising how many people forget this).
- Drink water. You’ll need to provide a sample.
Getting Past ‘White Coat’ Syndrome:
- We understand this is a very real concern for some drivers.
- We work with drivers all day long. We understand that passing your DOT physical exam is important to your continued career and your livelihood, and we’re here to do everything we can to help you.
- Dr. TIGGES DOES NOT have a white coat.