Driver's License

Just curious if anybody’s neurologist sent a letter to their DMV and they had to surrender their license? It wasn’t me, I just self monitored and still limit my driving but had never heard of anybody being turned in to their DMV and having to surrender their license.

Yes Mary, I have heard that this does occur, but it can depend on where you reside (Both state and country). I’m in Australia and I was told that the hospital was mandated to report after each neurosurgery. I’ve had the ‘joy’ (NOT) of undergoing 6 neurosurgeries so far. Only once have they informed me they were going to report and I begged the neuro not to. My employment needed me to drive from client to client and a loss of license means a loss of employment. They reluctantly agreed on the condition that I don’t drive symptomatic and I have a co-driver (wife) with me to monitor and take over if required for at least 3 months.

As it turned out I haven’t been able to return to my former employment role anyway, they did however allow me to keep my license. BUT every 12months I have to obtain a Dr’s declaration that, medically, I can still safely drive. No declaration, no license.

Merl from the Modsupport Team

I couldn’t find a complete list of our 50 States but I did find this Mandatory-Physician-Reporting States & Drivers' Licensing - Alzheimer's Proof which says there are 6 States with other States having different DMV laws. My father lost his license in CA after a pretty nasty ischemic stroke and had to retake the test. In NC I’m unsure, I don’t think that there was one when I ruptured but I did have to promise my Neurosurgeon I wouldn’t drive unless I was comfortable as a passenger. I can’t get the nc.dot.gov website to open this morning but I found this NCDMV Medical Review Hearings | Raleigh Criminal Defense Lawyer so perhaps it’s up to the Doctor. I recall a family I worked with where the father had Epilepsy and due to the number of seizures he kept having lost his license, not sure which doctor reported him. Each State will have their own reporting laws as Merl mentions and they’ll all have a long list of medical conditions is my guess.

Nobody dropped a dime on me, but my doctor would not say that I was okay to drive. That resulted in my needing, per my wife, to take a course through the rehab hospital up here. It tested my response time and such and a real driving test. Three months after rupture I was driving.

This was in California. They said they had no other medical problems. I’m not really surprised at this from CA but I told them I would ask if I could just take the test again and DMV said they need a medical clearance. I would call my neuro but they got nowhere with that. My next suggestion was see if their primary care physician would give them a medical clearance. I haven’t heard back if that was an option or not. I am going to check back and see what’s going on. They were so upset that they surrendered their license. They said they were just doing what they were told to do. I told them if they didn’t surrender their license the DMV would have suspended them. I think it should be a fairly simple process but I tend to try the simple route whenever I can.

I was the same. I couldn’t drive when I got home because I was still having seizures. I am very limited on my driving. I have to be feeling 100% or I won’t try it. I have a Dollar Store about 3 miles away. That was my first trip. My other big adventures are less than 10 miles from home but they seem a whole lot farther.

I’m glad you are doing so well with your driving. I never thought of having them ask if they can get a medical clearance if they take a driving class or have rehab certify them. It would surprise me if anybody other than the neurologist would sign a clearance for them but I would try.

@Mary
I reside in Pennsylvania and I remember that I asked about driving at my three months follow up with my neurosurgeon . I had not been driving because I was a little bit worried about how I would react to the traffic situation. I was told that I had no driving restrictions and that it was up to my family to decide. I started to drive short distances with my husband by my side and I slowly started to feel more confident. I have figured out that listening to music or talking on the phone while driving is not good for me, I would like to focus on the traffic.
This is what I found in our state.

“ According to [Section 1518] of the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code all health care personnel, i.e. all physicians, podiatrists, chiropractors, physician assistants, certified registered nurse practitioners and other persons authorized to diagnose or treat disorders and disabilities defined by PennDOT’s Medical Advisory Board, must report to PennDOT within 10 days, in writing, the full name, address, and date of birth of any patient 15 years of age or older, who has been diagnosed as having a condition that could impair their ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. However, reports are not required if the condition is expected to last less than 90 days; for example, a broken leg would not need to be reported to PennDOT.”

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From what I could find online, the physician with the most experience and knowledge about the specific patient can fill out a form if requested by the patient. I also found that the DMV would have sent a letter in the beginning with the exact wording on the reason for suspension or revocation and the patient would have had a certain number of days to challenge the decision. The person you know could call the Driver Safety Branch and get more specific information Deteriorated Driving Abilities - California DMV

I recall a mountain town back in the late ‘70’s early ‘80’s that had signs posted warning drivers that restricted drivers were on the road. The restrictions allowed the elderly to get to their medical appointments and the stores during a certain time period of the day. Perhaps the person you know could ask the Neurologist about it.
I believe we all have to remember driving is a privilege, not a given and need to treat it as such. I still won’t drive when school buses are on the road picking up and dropping off children as they can move so quickly, when it rains or snows as the wipers can mess with my brain sometimes, after sunset (car lights) and only on the freeway/interstate when BH is in the vehicle in case I get overwhelmed. I’m getting better but am still cautious.

I have no restrictions on my license but I do restrict myself. The night before my rupture, it was raining really hard, my supervisor was on the phone talking to me as I was being redirected to an immediate response and there was an accident right in front of the car ahead of me. I couldn’t imagine having all those things happening and me still be able to react quickly enough. I thank God every day I didn’t rupture while driving as I would never want to be the cause of someone’s injury or worse yet, their demise.

I live in Kentucky and the best I can find is it is a self report state. That’s a little risky because your insurance can refuse to pay for damages from an accident caused by a medical condition. The ins. company calls it an act of God. I’m like you I would never be able to forgive myself if I hurt or killed somebody because I had a problem and shouldn’t have been driving. I didn’t drive for more than a year after I was home. I couldn’t handle the pressure.

I am on one of the drive monitor programs with my insurance company and I told them I don’t drive 1000 miles a year. I am at 9 months on the monitor and I have driven a total of 32 miles. Some of those are just to my mailbox and back.

I’ve told my friend to talk to her neurologist and see what they say. To be honest with you, I wouldn’t drive if my surgeon said I could, even if I felt like I could. I hope they have some luck. I don’t drive a lot but I can’t imagine how I would feel if my driver’s license was taken away.

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I always kept to the backroads when I first started driving. To get to my parents’ home about two or three miles from our house I had to cross over the two lanes of oncoming traffic. But I timed it so I wasn’t on the road around lunch time so it was much easier to cross. Same with getting to Speech Therapy. It was easier on the backroads because they were a lower mph and I could drive like it was a Sunday.

Depending where your friend lives in California, it could be much more difficult. Last time I was back in Southern California, the semi rural areas were a thing of the past where we went to visit. Places I used to ride my horse were all but gone from the landscape. Many of the freeways were up to seven lanes on one side! I couldn’t and wouldn’t drive there now. There are advantages to living in rural or semi rural areas when it comes to driving. I don’t mind getting behind a tractor😂

I had my license suspended by CA DMV twice for 6 months on each occurrence - and both times after I suffered a breakthrough seizure.
Only once was while driving, the other was at home, but both times I was taken to the hospital by ambulance and admitted so I believe that may have been what triggered the reporting to the DMV.
I was under control against seizures through medication and have been since, but both times after suffering a breakthrough seizure I was reported to the DMV and was sent a letter placing me under suspension of driving privileges.
This was a number of years ago, and do remember having to go through the full “ride-along” test with a DMV inspector prior to being granted permission and having my driving privileges reinstated.

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It’s not a problem finding back roads and no traffic here. The Dollar Store is almost a straight shot for me. I’m s horrible winding twisted 25 Mike drive. I can hardly handle the stress of riding it let alone try to drive it. I don’t drive on the interstate at all and feel like getting on the floorboard when riding with somebody on it.

My friend is from Los Angeles. I can understand the caution. That’s pretty serious traffic. We have one stop sign in our town. It’s a 3 way stop. I always say a traffic jam here is when there’s 3 cars at the stop sign at the same time.

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There’s their answer. They are from Los Angeles. It sounds like they are going to have to do the whole dance to get the license back. First step would probably be getting a doctor to give them medical clearance.

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Fortunately your friend has RTD with both subway and bus systems that she can take advantage of and get to many places no matter if she actually lives in the city or somewhere in the county. I couldn’t believe how much RTD had grown in just the couple of decades I’d been gone from there. Public transportation in our county only exists inside the city limits of three of the biggest cities in our county, they won’t go to the rural areas. But they do have vehicles to pick up those who are disabled and take them to appointments. I even qualified for it before I got my social security disability awarded! They said they’d be happy to take me from our home all the way to Winston Salem for my Neurosurgeon’s appointments and wait for me!

We have a newish 4 way stop sign on one of our roads. You wouldn’t believe the number of drivers that don’t know the rules of a four way stop. It seems a bit dangerous to me and unfortunately I can’t avoid it without taking a detour of several miles. After the signs were first put up, one police officer was needing his coffee I guess and did a nice California stop, he just didn’t look. Wasn’t three days later I had occasion to be speaking with our Police Chief and suggested his Officers do the three count rule and look both ways at a stop sign😂