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13 medical conditions you need to tell the DVLA about before driving – or face a £1,000 fine

There are some medical conditions that you need to tell the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) about or you could be fined £1,000

Unless you live in London, the vast majority of people would be lost if they were unable to drive.

However, in certain situations, getting behind the wheel may not be possible.

As motorists, we have a duty to inform the DVLA if any issues arise that could provide a safety risk for us getting behind the wheel.

If you have epilepsy or a stroke then it is vital you let the authority know.

Notifiable conditions are anything that could affect your ability to drive safely, including:

  • 1. Epilepsy
  • 2. Strokes
  • 3. Other neurological and mental health conditions
  • 4. Physical disabilities
  • 5. Visual impairments

But there are other medical conditions you may be surprised to hear also fall into that bracket.

The motoring experts at have researched this and published a list of five that need to be noted otherwise a driver could be liable for prosecution and a £1,000 fine.

A stock image of a person driving
A stock image of a person driving

A spokesperson for said: “If you suffer a broken limb or severe head injury that affects your memory or ability to perform everyday tasks, you’re probably not going to be able to operate a vehicle safely either.

“In these cases, it seems obvious that you’d have to let the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency know about it.

“There are some conditions however, that seem too unrelated to even consider spending the time to fill out a form to tell the DVLA about.

“These are the kind of conditions we’ve listed below, to try and inform drivers and hopefully help many stay safe and avoid any fines – or even prosecution.”

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6. Déjà vu

Surprisingly, GOV.UK lists déjà vu as one of the health conditions that could affect your driving. Whilst most people will regard déjà vu as a common experience in healthy individuals, it is also associated with certain types of epilepsy – and this experience of déjà vu is a neurological anomaly related to epileptic electrical discharge in the brain. It is this medically induced déjà vu you need to inform the DVLA about.

7. Labyrinthitis

Labyrinthitis is a common inner ear infection that causes a delicate structure deep inside your ear (the labyrinth) to become inflamed. Symptoms can vary in severity, but usually get better after a few weeks. They can include mild headaches, some hearing loss, ear pain and vertigo. However, in some cases the symptoms can last longer and have a significant impact on your ability to carry out everyday tasks, so you should let the DVLA know.

8. Sleep Apnoea

Sleep Apnoea is a relatively common condition where the walls of the throat relax and narrow during sleep, interrupting normal breathing. This may lead to regularly interrupted sleep, which can have a big impact on your quality of life, increase the risk of developing certain conditions, and even cause you to fall asleep at the wheel – which is incredibly dangerous. It’s in these severe cases that you should get in contact with your GP/consultant for further advice and consider informing the DVLA.

9. Eating Disorders

Having an unhealthy attitude to food doesn’t seem like something that could affect your driving ability straight off the bat, yet there are severe cases that cause horrible side effects like being weak and dizzy. You must tell the DVLA if you suffer from an eating disorder (e.g. anorexia nervosa) and it affects your ability to drive safely. Speak to your doctor is you are unsure.

10. Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition that causes pain and inflammation in a joint, with around 10 million people suffering from it across the UK. It can affect people of all ages, including children, and as the most commonly affected joints are those in the hands, spine, knees and hips – which obviously you all need full use of to be able to sit in a car and drive safely – so you should tell the DVLA if your condition affects your driving and has lasted more than three months.

The most common types of medical conditions suffered by drivers in England and Wales are:

  • 11. Heart conditions

  • 12. Diabetes

  • 13. Brain condition or severe head injury

More on the conditions you should report can be found here.