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If you are considering a career in truck driving or the transportation industry, or are already an employee in a fleet company, it is important to be aware of all the facts and knowledge concerning the medical conditions that hinder driving ability. The most important condition is high blood pressure (BP).
Drivers who have high BP can be allowed to drive and operate a heavy commercial vehicle over interstate highways and roads, but the fleet companies and the FMCSA does require the driver to pass medical testing. After which they will be issued a medical certificate that authorizes them to initiate or continue their profession as a certified driver.
The driver’s blood pressure should be in the range of 140/90, with or without any medication. However, drivers that regularly take high blood pressure medicine will be given a certificate if during the test their blood pressure falls in the range of 140/90.
Drivers who want to pass this medical test will have to contact the DOT medical certification authority, which can initially take up to 1 year. However, drivers with low severity of high blood pressure will be able to pass this test in a period of 3 months.
For recertification, the driver will need to pass the test again after 1 year. But during the course of that one year, the driver will have to maintain his blood pressure in the range of 140/90.
The DOT physical examination results will be updated by the medical examiner, which will then be added to your driving career record. If a driver is dealing with higher readings of high blood pressure, there are several methods which can be used to decrease BP, for short-term and long-term periods.
The FMCSA and DOT utilizes medically accepts differentiating methods of classification between hypertension as a physical and medical condition. The ME will transmit the results of the driver’s medical exam to the DOT, through electronic channels, therefore, the drivers will have to keep their BP under control or they will face the danger of having a out-of-service action filed against them.
The drivers can either choose to change their lifestyles to keep their blood pressure under control or they can take the prescribed medicine to reduce the symptoms. As long as the blood pressure remains in the normal range, any method is advised.
Moreover, according to the FMCSA and DOT guidelines, they have devised a list of medicines that a driver can or cannot take. However, it is up to the driver’s physician to prescribe the correct medicine or dosage for a particular driver. But the physician cannot prescribe anything which is prohibited by the regulatory committees, as they can adversely affect the driver’s physical and mental condition while operating a commercial vehicle.
Hypertension or high blood pressure can cause tiredness, shortness of breath, nosebleeds, vision impairment, confusion, urine blood, irregular heartbeat, severe headache or pounding and pressure in your ears, chest, or neck. If the driver notices any of these symptoms they are advised by the FMCSA to consult their doctors immediately. – See more at: http://truckernews.com/high-blood-pressure-and-its-effect-on-your-driving-career-p595-90.htm#sthash.JFJoT0OM.dpuf