DOT (Department of Transportation) physicals for commercial drivers is a Federally required examination for all commercial drivers. This includes any person holding a Class A license, Class B license, and/ or those persons operating work or passenger transportation vehicles.

dot physicals los angelesA driver must obtain this medical physical examination from a Medical Examiner who is licensed and certified through the Department of Transportation and the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Service Administration.

The Certified Medical examiner will conduct a very detailed medical history and physical exam and determine based on the history and physical how long to grant a driver with a medical examiner certificate. The medical certificate Certifies that the commercial driver is qualified and fit to operate a commercial motor vehicle safely for a certain time period.



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This certification period can be as short as 30 days or a maximum of 2 years depending on each individual’s medical history and physical exam results. There may be some circumstances where a driver may not pass the medical exam on the first evaluation and may need additional testing and/or exams with the commercial drivers own personal primary care doctor (PCP).

The Medical Examiner will inform the driver what the problem or issue is at the time of the exam. These drivers can retake the DOT physical exam again after the required medical condition or problem is resolved and cleared by their primary care doctor.

The Medical Examiner may request a written medical clearance note, copies lab/imaging reports, or exam reports to be brought to the physical exam re-test for review and re-evaluation.

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Commercial drivers may not have this exam performed by any medical provider who is not US DOT Certified. Federal law mandates that any commercial driver must possess the medical certification at all times while employed as a commercial driver/operator. Failure of drivers to uphold this Federal requirement may result in major penalties, fines, imprisonment, and/or dismissal of commercial licensure indefinitely.

The forms that will be given to the driver at the end of the medical examination includes two separate forms: MCSA-5875 (Medical Examination Report) and the MCSA-5876 (Medical Examiners Certificate). Both of these forms will need to be submitted to the DMV and/or Commercial DMV for processing and updating.

About 8 weeks prior to the expiration date on the commercial driver’s medical certificate, the DMV will mail a notice reminding the driver that their upcoming expiration date is coming and they will need to submit an updated MER (Medical Examination Report) and MEC (Medical Examiner’s Certificate).

When you schedule a DOT/CDL medical physical exam form , you will need to bring your driver’s license or passport, medications, glasses or contacts, hearing aids, and any medical documentation (Sleep Apnea results, CPAP printouts, Insulin/Diabetes waivers, etc..)that the Medical Examiner may need to review. All of the forms will be at the medical examiner’s office.

Certified Medical Examiner for DOT Physicals

You will fill out complete medical history forms and undergo a physical exam screening. The physical exam screening includes: height/weight check, BMI, vision, hearing, blood pressure, pulse, urinalysis (specific gravity, glucose, protein, blood), hand grip strength, color screening, and complete physical examination from head to toe. The medical examiner will discuss any pertinent/negative findings at the time of the exam.

A commercial driver can prepare in advance for the DOT/CDL physical examination weeks prior to the exam. These things include:

  1.  Having up to date contacts, glasses, and hearing aids
  2. Eliminating any salt, caffeine, sugar, fast or fried foods from your diet
  3. Doing cardio exercise daily for 30 minutes or more a day for 2 consecutive weeks prior to your appointment
    ****(No exercise or caffeine day of physical)****
  4. Taking all medications as directed by your primary care doctor (PCP) and taking medications 2-3 hours prior to your appointment the day of the DOT/CDL physical exam
  5. Drinking 8 cups of 8oz water to a gallon of water daily
  6. Remaining relaxed during the entire DOT/CDL physical process

Once the commercial driver has been deemed “fit to drive” and have passed the screening requirements, the MCSA 5875 Medical Examination Report (MER) and the MCSA 5876 Medical Examiners Certificate (MEC) will be issued the same day for to the driver to take to their respective DMV in their state of licensure for processing if all requirements are satisfied.