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I know this has been discussed... But just a few questions. For those of you who DON'T drive, is that self imposed restriction or by doctors reporting to DMV. What kinds of symptoms keep you from driving? Is there anyone who has had their driving privileges legally removed due to this illness?

I personally have not driven since Oct. 2011 when my syncope began to escalate. Now that I think about it, I waited too long. At that point, my syncope was completely positional. I would stand up and faint so my doctor was comfortable letting me drive. Well, since Nov. when my illness progressed seriously and I was having numerous syncopal episodes a day- I had 3 concussions that month. The last one gave me a cracked skull and quite a stay in the hospital. When released- two instructions- no driving, and no WALKING. Well, still waiting but have not got to the point I can stand 30 seconds or more without BP bottoming out and fainting. So, I'm still on doctor ordered bed rest but I can go places in a wheelchair. That said, I still faint crawling and in sitting positions at times. I had a fainting spell in public (grrrrrr) and witnesses said I had a seizure. EEG did not show seizure but the MRI showed something abnormal with my brain.. But NO ONE knows. My chiropractor thinks he does but my medical doctors say its impossible.

Anyway- my point- obviously I'm no where near driving now but if we have no legal restrictions then we use our best judgement? Or is frequent syncope like seizures and you lose your license????

I know, out of bed and walking first.... Lots of recovery... But the thought of never driving again is pretty dreary.... Just to be clear, though, I'd never drive if I was currently fainting or felt it was not safe.

Your thoughts?

Jen

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It would depend on your states particular rules. When you go to renew your license you probably have to chek the box re medical conditions. Your dr probably has some influence too. I would call the local DMV to find out what the policy is. I don't faint, but I didn't drive for years after getting POTS - mostly because I lost confidence, I think!

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Self-imposed in my case. I started getting spacey about a year and a half ago - I have trouble judging distances, speed, etc, which is clearly a no-go when it comes to driving given that I have trouble just crossing the street. My doctor seems to think that the self-imposed driving ban is a good idea, but since I don't have a car and rarely drove before, and was the one that brought it up myself, she didn't see the need to do it officially, I guess? Though - yogini's point is scary, I'm kind of nervous about renewing my license now. I know that I won't drive unless I improve, but I do want the ability in the future, maybe? Hmm.

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I know in Ohio, the rules are on-line. You may want to check on-line for your state regs, otherwise i would recommend calling the DMV. I also believe you know what is best for yourself. Good luck.

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Most states it is 6 months after having a seizure, but having dizziness/vertigo is very bad for driving, even if you don't faint. I misjudged curbs twice, which was very costly, and scarey, too!! Use good judgement. Now on medication, I drive short distances, but I'm talking 5-10 minutes maximum. There are days I will not drive. It depends how my eye sight is, too. I have blurred vision, unequal pupils, binocular defect, which waxes and wanes. I don't drive at night, unless I'm in my neighborhood, a mile or two. Choir practice, maybe...

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  • 2 weeks later...

In Florida, the verbiage used on the application/renewal forms is "Have you suffered from epilepsy, fainting, or dizzy spells within the past two years?"

The way I view it is that you're the driver, you are solely responsible for safe operation of the car.

This includes:

making sure the car is functioning properly

you are healthy enough to drive (includes being tired)

you are in the right state of mind to drive (not intoxicated, not inhibited by prescription drugs)

and conditions (weather, traffic, etc).

I don't think there is a single driver out there who hasn't been dizzy at some point in their life. If going by the "dizzy spells" criterion, most college students would be in trouble due to binge drinking, which is another problem in and of itself.

There are times I've pulled off the road because road conditions+weather weren't good enough for my liking, and there've been times I've pulled off to take a nap. These are things most people have done at some point in their life.

I keep a pulse/ox meter in the center console, and will check my BP if I suspect something's up. My mind's become quite adept at measuring how fast it's internally processing things and my driving reflects this with greater following distances and slower speeds when I'm not feeling so great. I also try to time my driving based on my body's cycles as well.

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