Driving requires you to be attentive and alert at all times. Yet there are no regulations saying a commercial driver must be screened for sleep disorders, which can impact his or her ability to react on the road, more or less stay awake. We are frequently asked about FMCSA guidelines and recommendations concerning FMCSA sleep apnea standards.
FMCSA Standards for Commercial Drivers
At this time, the FMCSA Advisory Criteria, which is a set of recommendations for medical examiners to use in determining physical qualifications for commercial driving, includes the following statement concerning respiratory dysfunctions.
FMCSA 391.41(b)(5) states that “A person is physically qualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle if that person has no established medical history or clinical diagnosis of a respiratory dysfunction likely to interfere with the ability to control and drive a commercial motor vehicle safely. If the medical examiner detects a respiratory dysfunction, that in any way is likely to interfere with the driver’s ability to safely control and drive a commercial motor vehicle, the driver must be referred to a specialist for further evaluation and therapy.”
Drivers with Sleep Apnea
Basically, if you are a commercial driver who has been diagnosed with sleep apnea, is at a high risk of having sleep apnea, or you have been recommended to take a sleep study by your DOT or Physician, you must have clearance from a specialist to comply with the FMCSA sleep apnea standards.
How important are the FMCSA sleep apnea standards? A recent study concluded that “Individuals with obstructive sleep apnea show cognitive deficits similar to those often associated with aging.” Instances of sleep apnea, when analyzing patients of various ages, were found to limit the brain’s capacity to respond to cognitive challenges. Meeting the FMCSA sleep apnea standards could be the difference from a job well-done and an accident waiting to happen.
Aeroflow Sleep Clinic
Under the guidance of our Board Certified Sleep Physicians, we provide a turnkey solution by offering in-home sleep studies, therapy and compliance management at a fraction of the cost of in-lab studies. We proudly offer 24-hour clinical support to our patients to ensure successful treatment and compliance with the FMCSA sleep apnea standards.
FMSA Physical Qualifications
If you are a commercial driver and suffer from any of the below symptoms and risk indicators, contact Aeroflow Industrial and talk to one of our healthcare representatives about our screening process and home sleep test options.
Symptoms and Risk Indicators of Sleep Apnea:
- Daytime Sleepiness
- Blood Pressure
- Body Mass Index > 35
- Neck Size > 17 inches
Benefits of treating sleep apnea can include the following:
- More energy
- Decreased risk of heart disease
- Reduced blood pressure
- Ability to lose weight easier
- Reduced healthcare costs
- Reduced symptoms of depression
Our testing options are a cost-effective alternative to the traditional sleep lab and can be completed when and where you want.