What to Expect at Your DOT Physical

What to Expect at Your DOT Physical

If you drive a commercial vehicle or you plan to, having a DOT physical is an essential requirement. Operating any type of commercial vehicle comes with a lot of responsibility and a lot of stress, and having your DOT physical ensures you’re healthy enough for the job — for your safety and for the safety of other drivers sharing the road.

Primary Care Associates performs DOT physicals at practices in Frederick and Clarksburg, Maryland, helping commercial drivers take the next step toward staying on the road and on track with their careers. If there’s a DOT physical in your future, here’s what you can expect.

DOT physicals: The basics

Department of Transportation (DOT) physicals include a lot of the same examinations that you’d have in a regular annual physical, but with a focus on skills and capabilities necessary for safe driving. Because of those special requirements, DOT physicals can only be performed by a doctor who’s licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

During the exam, our team will perform a thorough physical, including evaluations of your current and past medical history, your family medical history, and any medications you’re currently taking. We’ll also ask about glasses, hearing aids, or other medical accommodations you might be using.

Be prepared to discuss:

We’ll also want to know about chronic medical issues, like high blood pressure, asthma, heart disease, or diabetes.

What to expect during your DOT exam

The exam begins with measurements of your weight and your blood pressure — the same way an annual physical begins. In addition, our team will perform other assessments, including:

Depending on your medical history and other factors, we might recommend other assessments, as well.

Preparing for your exam is simple. Just be sure to bring a list of any medications you’re taking (including dosages), and jot down a brief medical history, too, to make sure you remember everything that needs to be included. And of course, bring along your forms so we can fill them out at the end of the exam.

DOT exams need to be repeated every 24 months. In Maryland, commercial drivers need to submit DOT exam certification when applying for a new commercial license or when renewing their existing license. You’ll also need to submit the certification if you need to change your license or get a duplicate license.

Schedule your DOT exam today

DOT exams are required, and scheduling an exam as soon as possible ensures your license application is reviewed in a timely manner. To learn more about DOT exams or to schedule one for yourself, call Primary Care Associates or book an appointment online today.

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