Here is a list of questions we often hear from drivers.

We hope this helps your search to understand what’s required to meet FMCSA DOT physical regulations and get your DOT medical card with as little hassle as possible.

At Chiro Stop we do
DOT Physical Exams and
DOT Drug Alcohol Testing.

Quick, Accurate, and Hassle Free

No appointment necessary. Walk-ins are welcome,
or call 801-972-2332 to book a time that works for you.

Parking for 135 trucks at Sapp Bros. I 80 Truck Stop, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

We have a new website so you can find DOT doctors nationwide. You can also find frequently asked questions, by category, on the new website.
And you can find information on what you need to self-certify your CDL with your State Licensing Department.


Please help us transition to the new website (so we can retire this one!!).

Click HERE http://dotphysicaldoctor.com/faq/ to go to our new FAQ and post your question.

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You can still get answers on this ‘old’ website – read below.
And Trucker Doc is still answering questions posted on our good ol’ favorite website.

What are the DOT physical requirements?

Does a DOT physical include a drug test?

What drugs are tested for, if a DOT drug test is requested?

What’s involved in a DOT physical?

Why do I have to have a urine test?

Can I obtain a copy of my DOT physical form?

Can the DOT medical card be laminated?

How long is a DOT medical card good for?

How many 3-month DOT medical cards can you have?

Is there a difference between a DOT medical card and a DOT physical card?

If I don’t have medical insurance can I still get a DOT physical?

How much does a DOT physical cost without insurance?

How do overweight truck drivers pass the DOT physical?

What are the DOT Physical blood pressure requirements?

Can a driver with mild sleep apnea get a CDL?

What are the truck driving vision requirements?

What would cause me to fail a DOT physical?

What if the DOT drug screen tests positive?

Do I need a medical card if I’m a local driver?

What are the DOT physical requirements?

Does a DOT physical include a drug test?

  • Drug testing is not part of a DOT Physical exam but your Company may request to have drug alcohol testing done at the same time. DOT drug testing and breath alcohol testing are additional charges.

What drugs are tested for, if a DOT drug test is requested?

  • The 5 Panel drug test analyzes urine for the following drugs:
    • Marijuana (THC metabolite)
    • Cocaine
    • Amphetamines
    • Opiates (including heroin)
    • Phencyclidine (PCP)

What’s involved in a DOT physical?

Why do I have to have a urine test?

  • The urine test is just a kidney screen to test for sugar and protein. It’s done to determine that there is no early onset of conditions like high blood pressure breaking down the kidneys, or early signs of diabetes, or kidney infection.

Can I obtain a copy of my DOT physical form?

  • Yes. We give you 2 copies of the long-form. One for the driver, one for the Company. If you need, we will fax the DOT form to your company. The examining doctor keeps a copy of the form for our office records.

Can the DOT medical card be laminated?

  • Yes. We laminate your DOT medical card for you. Because you need to keep it with you at all times while you’re driving, lamination helps to reduce the wear and tear on the card.

How long is a DOT medical card good for?

  • A DOT medical card is good for two years if you have no restrictions. A history of high blood pressure, taking high blood pressure medications, and/or taking oral medications for diabetes can restrict the medical card to one year.

How many 3-month DOT medical cards can you have?

  • One only. You should have the condition, which caused the restriction, under control by the end of the 3-month window.

Is there a difference between a DOT medical and a DOT physical?

  • No. These terms are used interchangeably. They are most often referred to as a DOT medical when referring to the DOT medical card, and DOT physical when referring to the DOT physical exam, and sometimes drivers refer to them as a CDL physical or CDL medical.

If I don’t have medical insurance can I still get a DOT physical?

  • Yes. You do not need medical insurance to get a DOT Physical. Insurance is not a part of our DOT Physical exam service. Payment for the exam is your responsibility at time of service. Some insurance companies treat this exam as preventative health care and will not reimburse for it. If you have insurance and want to claim reimbursement we can give you a receipt to submit to your insurance company.

How much does a DOT physical cost without insurance?

  • We’ve seen DOT physicals charged anywhere between $50 and $200. We charge the same price whether you have insurance or not. Payment for our DOT Physical service is $80.00 and payment options are cash, credit card, T-check, Com-check, or pre-authorized company account.

How do overweight truck drivers pass the DOT physical?

  • Being overweight is not a restriction to passing the DOT Physical exam. It is the medical conditions that being overweight eventually leads to, such as high blood pressure, heart disease and kidney disease, that may affect your ability to safely drive a commercial vehicle. That is what the DOT Physical exam will determine – whether you have any of these restrictive medical conditions. Getting healthy and staying healthy is your best guarantee for your life and your livelihood.

What are the DOT physical blood pressure requirements?

Here are the medical guidelines according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs). Note that employers are allowed to impose more stringent medical requirements.

  • A driver with a BP of less than 140 systolic and less than 90 diastolic may be medically certified to drive for a two-year period.
  • A driver with a BP of 140 – 159 systolic and /or a BP of 90-99 diastolic, has stage 1 hypertension, and may be medically certified to drive for a one-year period. Certification examinations should be done annually thereafter and should be at or less than 140/90.
  • A driver with a a BP of 160-179 systolic and/or a BP of 100-109 diastolic, has stage 2 hypertension, and is a candidate for antihypertensive drug therapy. The driver is given a one-time certification of three months to reduce his or her blood pressure to less than or equal to 140/90. Provided treatment is well tolerated and the driver demonstrates a BP value of 140/90 or less, he or she may be re-certified for one year from the date of the initial exam. The driver is certified annually thereafter.
  • A driver with a BP at or greater than 180 systolic and / or 110 diastolic has stage 3 hypertension and is disqualified. The driver may not be qualified, even temporarily, until blood pressure is reduced to equal to or less than 140/90 and treatment is well tolerated. The driver may be certified for 6 months and biannually (every 6 months) thereafter if at recheck BP is equal to or less than 140/90.

Drivers with  Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, or kidney disease require treatment if their blood pressure rises above 130/80, since they already have a high risk of heart disease. See our article on “High Blood Pressure: Commercial Driver Risk?” for more information.

Can a driver with mild sleep apnea get a CDL?

  • Obstructive sleep apnea does not necessarily disqualify you for a DOT medical card. Treatment with a CPAP machine and some basic lifestyle changes can help you get a restful sleep and maintain your commercial drivers license. For more information on what is currently required for DOT physical certification see our news article “Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Commercial Driver Risk?“.

What are the truck driving vision requirements?

  • A commercial driver must have distant visual acuity of at least 20/40 in each eye. That means without corrective lenses, or with corrective lenses, you must be able to see 20/40 or better, with each eye individually as well as together. Your  field of vision should be  at least 70 degrees horizontally, and you must be able to recognize the standard traffic signal colors of red, green and amber.

What would cause me to fail a DOT physical?

  • Over all the years we’ve been working with drivers, the biggest cause for concern we see is high blood pressure. Another concern is uncontrolled sugar in the urine. There are ways you can manage your blood pressure and blood sugar. See our tips to prepare for your DOT physical.
  • Any condition that would cause a loss of ability to control, operate, or drive a commercial vehicle safely – loss or impairment of limbs, poor visual acuity, insulin-controlled diabetes, high blood pressure (more than 180/110), heart disease, respiratory disfunction, epilepsy, mental disorder, use of certain drugs, alcoholism. See a complete list of FMCSA rules and regulations.

What if the DOT drug screen tests positive?

  • If the urinalysis is positive for one or more of the drugs on the 5 panel drug test, then the driver will be contacted in person by the Medical Review Officer. The MRO will interview the driver to determine if there is an alternative medical explanation for the drugs found in the urine specimen. If the driver provides appropriate documentation, a confirmation test is performed for each identified drug using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) analysis. GC/MS confirmation ensures that over-the-counter medications or preparations are not reported as positive results. If the MRO determines that it is a legitimate medical use of the prohibited drug, the drug test result is reported as negative to the employer. Otherwise the drug test will be reported as positive.

Do I need a medical card if I’m a local driver?

  • We’ll answer this question as it pertains to the state of Utah, as we’re located in Salt Lake City. For other states please check with the motor carrier division of your state. For Utah the full documentation is available at the Motor Carrier Division Utah DOT.
  • In summary, a driver qualifies under UDOT, and must carry a valid medical card, if driving a commercial vehicle that:
    • Has a gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight of 10,001 pounds or more
    • Is designed or used to transport more than 8 persons for compensation
    • Is designed or used to transport more than 15 persons not for compensation
    • Is used in transporting hazardous material

Additional Questions or Comments:

If you have a question that you feel has not been answered here, please leave it in the space below. Doctor Kenn will answer  questions about the DOT physical requirements or exam as soon as possible. Visit this web page again soon to see our response. Your comments are also welcome.

Leave a comment


  1. Trucker Doc

     /  March 2, 2016

    Well have you had your eyes examined by a professional. If it can be corrected to meet the DOT standards, then get it done.
    If the eyes cannot be corrected, then you would start the process of acquiring a vision waiver or check into driving intra-state only and see what the local drivers license department has in the way of rules regarding your vision.

  2. Hollisa R

     /  March 2, 2016

    I am having problems with passing the eye exam. One of my eyes meet the dot requirement but the other one does not, what is it for me to do. I see just find it just my left eye is my good eye and it works for the both my right I could see but not to meet the dot requirement. what could I do

  3. Trucker Doc

     /  March 1, 2016

    Yes it’s true. You need a medical release form from your doctor stating that, in his opinion, you could return to driving. With that form in hand you should be OK if there are no other issues.

  4. Mike

     /  February 29, 2016

    I had a mild Tia four years ago I have had two health cards issued to me since then I recently went for a new health card and the doctor says I need a release form from my cardiologist is this true I live in ri

  5. brian

     /  February 24, 2016

    Some of the questions i’ve read here are very concerning to me. Trucker Doc seems like a real professional in his/her responses. Concerning because a lot of the question have to do with drug tests and how to get around them or their results. My advice would be to clean your closet long before you consider driving anything for a living. I could really care less about you, im worried about me. If your here asking these questions your in the wrong place, try a detox or rehab.

  6. Trucker Doc

     /  February 23, 2016

    The DOT examination does not include a drug screen, but every time you turn around you will be drug tested by the FMCSA and the company. You are not going to pass those tests. So you might want to consider another career or reconsider this one and your present lifestyle.

  7. Dine

     /  February 22, 2016

    I have the New York CLP class A with A3 restriction so i have to take the USDOT medical but am weed smoker….now do I need to take the test or not????

  8. Trucker Doc

     /  January 31, 2016

    Time to talk to a good attorney…

  9. Terry

     /  January 30, 2016

    I worked for Coca-Cola, been working there for 11 years I have passed ever drug screen I have ever had. I was hurt went to dr in nov 2015 they gave ne hydrocodone. I never took this on the job..
    They called me in for another drug screen they took my hair, an of course it did come back in hair, the lab called me an ask if I had a script I faxed it an they wrote neg. I passed all my urine..long story short they fired me.
    I had a job at another company an coke called them told them I failed my drug screens.
    Now can they call dot an have my class A suspended?
    They want stop telling people I failed my drug screen an I don’t know what to do..
    Do I need to get a lawyer? in 11 years I have never failed a drug screen

  10. Trucker Doc

     /  January 28, 2016

    So you test positive for thc and you want to drive truck? You do realize that you will be drug and alcohol tested routinely as a driver. And any positive test results will cause you to lose your driving privileges?
    So think about this before pursuing a career in driving. If you know what to expect and you are going to take personal responsibility, then you know what you need to do.

  11. Trucker Doc

     /  January 28, 2016

    It will raise a ton of questions, so part of the answer would be why are you taking this drug? Based on the answer, you may get by with proper documentation or you may be denied a medical certificate. Most CME’s will not look very far into the situation until you can bring them the documentation that they need to make an informed decision.

  12. nancy

     /  January 27, 2016

    Can yo pass your DOT if on suboxone ???

  13. Cody

     /  January 27, 2016

    Okay, so I am currently trying to get Ino a school that requires I get my DOT physical before I can get in… I got a drug test because the Dr had said that I have previous drug problem (2 years ago) so she had to give me one. I may come up for thc… and if I do I’m just wondering if I can go back in a few weeks and retake it when I know I’m clean. Personally I don’t think it’s right that she drug test me because of an isolated incident that happened 2 years ago. Vera use otherwise, she wouldn’t have drug tested me at all. Just looking for answers, this school is a dream of mine so I’m hoping I can retake in 2 weeks or so. Thanks everyone

  14. Trucker Doc

     /  January 18, 2016

    We faxed it and drivers license department should have received it, so check with them and take your medical card with you to show that it was done in a timely fashion.

  15. Gavin R

     /  January 18, 2016

    Hey, I had my DOT physical on 14 SEPT 2015. While trying to apply to be a driver for out UTA van ride share, I was denied. Come to find out The DMV has Disqualified me and for failure to downgrade my license. I was told it had something to do with not updating my DOT medical card in time. I watched you fax the forms so I am not sure what is going on. Have you encountered this before? I will find out more once I am off on a day to go into the DMV. I was hoping to get some answers in the mean time. Thanks Take care.

  16. Trucker Doc

     /  December 14, 2015

    It would depend on your company’s privacy policy.
    By law all you need to provide to the company is a copy of your medical card. There are no notes on the card.
    If you provide a full copy of the long form to the company, then they have access to the notes. Check with your human resources department and see what they have to say about full long form or just a copy of the medical card. The company has to have some level of personal information protection.

  17. Phil

     /  December 11, 2015

    I had my DOT physical the other day. I passed but some personal notes were made on my reports werw made that I do not appreciate. I assumed my employer would see if I passes or failed but NOT have access to the details of the test. I am furious.
    is this not a violation of my privacy? Thank you.

  18. Trucker Doc

     /  October 9, 2015

    If it’s FMCSA standards, then it’s a stress test every two years.
    You are driving a school bus, so check with your state drivers license department and see what other options are available to you in your situation.

  19. Brian Bock

     /  October 8, 2015

    I had a Heart Attack in 2002 and had a stint put in at that time, my last stress test was done in i believe 2006, my health has been good no further heart issues, my cardiologist contends that my health is good enough to not warrant a stress test. I am a new hire as a bus driver for a school system. does the DOT require that a sress test be given or would a letter from my cardiologist be enough to keep my medical card. currently they gave me a two month extension to determine or not if actually is a requirement. thank you

    Brian Bock

  20. Trucker Doc

     /  October 5, 2015

    The examiners should have given you a copy of your long form for your records, that’s what they should have done. Don’t know what the problem is in getting you a copy of your long form.

  21. Rod

     /  October 1, 2015

    I had my DOT physical back in June of this year. The company paid for it. I wanted to see a copy of my results like what my blood pressure was and weight things like that. But the clinic won’t release that information to me because the company paid for my physical. Can they do that? I also want my primary doctor to have a copy also and they won’t let him have the results. What can I do. Really would like to know my results of my physical test. Please e-mail with an answer. Thanks RS

  22. Trucker Doc

     /  September 28, 2015

    Once you have the transplant and you are fully healed, then you can be tested to determine if you pass.
    The pass/fail will not be judged on the transplant, but on fitness for duty as a CMV operator.
    Your card may be held to once a year based on the CME’s findings and risk factors for a progressive kidney condition.

  23. Megan

     /  September 27, 2015

    I have kidney disease with a function at 15%. I get a blood tests whenever I see the doctor and he keeps a close eye on me. I plan on having a transplant in the near future. Will I be able to pass a dot?

  24. Trucker Doc

     /  August 31, 2015

    This question is unclear. Which part of the test did you walk out on? Since there is no drug test on the DOT examination, was there a request from the employer for a drug screen? More information is needed.

  25. Rock

     /  August 31, 2015

    What happens if i went out to my car (left testing sight) while waiting to take urine test, they say I refused. When can I return to take The DOT physical and drug screen again?

  26. Trucker Doc

     /  August 17, 2015

    With proper documentation and a medical release form from your doctor, you may be OK. This medication is not highly recommendation for people operating a vehicle and should not be used during driving.

  27. kybred trucker

     /  August 14, 2015

    I’m starting school Monday to obtain my cdl. I know I have tramadol in my system and I’m afraid it will show up in drug test and I’ll be disqualified. Is this true?

  28. Trucker Doc

     /  July 7, 2015

    Drug testing is different from a medical card. If you take a medical examination, the urine test is for proper kidney function, not drug screening.
    If you are going for pre-employment or random drug screening, then you are being tested for specific drugs. Two different things. And, in most cases you do not lose your medical card.

  29. Tazz

     /  July 7, 2015

    If you fail a drug test will they still give you your dot medical card?

  30. Trucker Doc

     /  June 16, 2015

    No blood test. Just a urine test to check for kidney function.
    To know the important things, go to this link on our national website and download the free guidebook on DOT physicals.

  31. Tiffany

     /  June 15, 2015

    Hi I wanted to know do they do blood test for the D.O.T physical and what are the important things they do

  32. Trucker Doc

     /  May 13, 2015

    Most likely you will have a 5 year wait following your stroke and the defibrillator is unacceptable for an interstate driver.
    So you would want to check into intra-state only. Your state DLD will be the best bet for the most up to date information. As an intra-state only driver, some of the rules and regulations soften and you may be able to drive commercially with the defib unit. So check with your state DLD to make that final decision based on the information they provide for you.

  33. Anonymous

     /  May 13, 2015

    I had a TIA on 4 aug 2014,had a pacemaker/defibrillator implant on 17 feb 2015 what are my requirements to recertify my dot medical card. I was told I had to wait 5 years after the stroke to requalify. im in Houston texas

  34. Trucker Doc

     /  April 20, 2015

    If you were sent by your employer, then there shouldn’t be any real issues.

  35. Trucker Doc

     /  April 20, 2015

    Once you are fully healed from the donation, you should be just fine.
    You might need to take a medical release form with you from the doctor. It will answer most of the CME’s question. Be Well!

  36. brandon

     /  April 19, 2015

    My dad has stage four kidney failure if i donate one of mine to him can i still keep my class A CDL?

  37. Mike

     /  April 17, 2015

    I just had a dot examine for my job. The examiner gave me a 3 month medical card because he said I need a sleep apnea test done. Less than a week later a new employer called me and I had to take another dot examine. The examiner gave me a 1 year medical card. Will this be considered doctor shopping? I put the same thing on both of my paperwork.

  38. Trucker Doc

     /  April 15, 2015

    @bus driver23
    You may keep your license, but you will need a medical release form from your doctor to keep your medical card up to date.

  39. bus driver23

     /  April 14, 2015

    Can I keep my cdl license if my doctor prescribes me lortabs? Not driving for at least 8 hours after taking medication.

  40. Trucker Doc

     /  April 14, 2015


  41. TOM

     /  April 14, 2015


  42. Trucker Doc

     /  April 7, 2015

    Check inside the FMCSA guideline handbook on the FMCSA website.
    Any illness or injury that removes a driver from the safe operation of a CMV must have a new DOT examination to determine if the driver is “fit for duty”.

  43. Chuck

     /  April 7, 2015

    Can you tell me where I can find a DOT Regulation that states if an employee is out sick for ten days for a sickness that didn’t happen at work that he his required to get a new DOT Card? This employee received his new DOT card on the Friday before he became ill.

  44. Trucker Doc

     /  March 27, 2015

    It is not a new law or regulation. It is a guideline/recommendation for smokers.
    It’s also a way to make extra money off of the truck drivers. If there is a visible / functional reason for such testing then it will be hard to get around. If there is no real logical/ functional reason, then it’s for the dough.

  45. Jeff

     /  March 26, 2015

    Tim Landes: Was informed today by the Texas CDL medical examiner that if I am a smoker I must also, by a new law, have, and pay for, something called a PFT test, (a lung function test). Never heard of this law and cannot find any information about it. Any truth to this? Is there a new law?Thanks

    Yes, it is true. I just had one two day’s ago and failed. It is a very hard test, I passed out 3 times. I think it is a crock if you ask me.

  46. Trucker Doc

     /  March 14, 2015

    Just have your prescribing doctor fill out a medical release form for you. Also, have a copy of your script on hand. If the drug test pops positive, the MRO will call and ask for a copy of the prescription to determine proper usage. That will help the most.

  47. Chris Thomas

     /  March 13, 2015

    I’m enrolled in a truck driving school and I am prescribed a very, very low dose of suboxone. Is this going to be a problem with passing my drug screen for my DOT or any pre-employment screenings? Most people who take it are on as much as 32mg a day, I take 1mg daily and it’s more so to keep me from relapsing. I’ve been clean now for over a year and the low dose suboxone fights any urges to use again.

  48. Tim Landes

     /  March 9, 2015

    Was informed today by the Texas CDL medical examiner that if I am a smoker I must also, by a new law, have, and pay for, something called a PFT test, (a lung function test). Never heard of this law and cannot find any information about it. Any truth to this? Is there a new law?


  49. Trucker Doc

     /  February 28, 2015

    Not sure what the question really is.
    There is no drug test taken at the time of the DOT medical examination, so what does the drug test have tho do with the retaking of a medical examination. Drug testing is an employment requirement. Positive test results are sent to the employer and it is up to them as to how they will treat the positive findings. As far as your CDL and driving/employability is concerned, a new employer is going to want another drug screen for pre-employment hiring, so get clean and stay clean.

  50. Don

     /  February 28, 2015

    I have CDL permit and med card. Failed my drug test. I want to try again, by failing my first drug test. Will they question why I need another med card since I fail the drug test. Is the fact that I fail reported so that I can’t get another job with a carrier.

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