Driving Licence Renewal

Three years ago when my MS diagnosis changed from RRMS to SPMS, I had to inform the DVLA who made the decision that I could continue driving but would need to renew my licence in 3 yrs time. The 3 yrs is up in June, but I completed the forms early and returned them about 2 weeks ago. I got a letter back yesterday saying that my licence has been revoked due to the medication that I’m on and the side effects they may have. I’ve been driving for 40 yrs, since I was 19 (gives my age away) and have only had one slight bump which had nothing to do with the MS. I do have days when I don’t feel up to driving because of fatigue, this being the case I don’t go anywhere. Both my MS Nurse & Physio have recommended that I drive an automatic, which I do.

Has this happened to anyone else and if so what did you do?

Glad you posted this as never thought of that when asking for something to help! I really need to be able to drive in my job and would lose job!

Could I ask what drug it was?

I’m on Baclofen; Amitriptyline & Tramadol all for pain. Have been taken off Pregablin as they knocked me out.

Was it any particular one? I take Baclofen for spasms but only take it short burst as it relaxes my muscle too much and back pain from years of bad lifting kick in!

Can you appeal their decision? I have RRMS and have to renew every 3 years and can’t drive larger vehicles. The letter gave the option of appealing with medical support. Presumably a medical apt to check reflexes etc. Would have cost approx £40 privately. I decided not to bother in the end as the larger vehicles thing actually makes work easier for me! Might be worth a try though if they are prepared to state side effects don’t affect you? Hope this helps. I would be gutted to lose my licence so fingers crossed for you. A x

I lost my driving licence a few months ago. DVLA contacted my neuro and G.P. and they said that my licence was being revoked because of the drugs that I am on and a relapse involving double vision. I take Baclofen, Pregabalin, Amitriptyline and rebif. I have prisms fitted in my glasses which have helped with the double vision but my licence has gone! I have been driving for 25 years and live in the country so this has had a big impact on my life. I never drove when I did not feel safe but it is hard to accept that I may never drive again.

You really need to talk this over with your GP, elvelero.
It looks like the problem may lie with the Amitriptyline - a quick root through the BNF suggests that this can cause drowsiness (and there is a caution about driving). It could be that a different pain-killer could get you back driving.

Add-on prisms seem to be a big NO NO, Amily.
If your double vision is more or less vertical, it is fairly easy to get an optician to prescribe a lens (mono or bi-focal) that will sort the problem.
Add-ons (pieces of plastic Fresnel lenses) that are stuck to your normal glasses can reduce the light transmission quite substantially - and this is seen as a hazard, particularly in low light conditions.
Double vision is a tricky area, but it can often be sorted (I have a prism lens for my right eye that includes a bi-focal) but I would not want to comment further without seeing the numbers from your prescription.



Was it any particular one? I take Baclofen for spasms but only take it short burst as it relaxes my muscle too much and back pain from years of bad lifting kick in!

I forgot to add Clonazepam to my list. DVLA didn’t say which one but it could have been the combination of all 4. Except for the Baclofen which I take 70mgs a day, I take the rest only at night time. I didn’t have a problem 3 yrs ago when I was on all the same apart from Tramadol which has replaced the Pregablin so am not sure where they coming from. At the time 3yrs ago I was still working and was concerned that I would loose my job if I lost my licence but the Access to Work manager said that they would help should this happen.

I hope all goes well for you and try (although it’s hard) not to worry. I didn’t speak to my doctor before sending off the forms, big mistake so it might be a good idea to see yours before filling in the form.

Take care, Sandie

Hi everyone,

I’d like to thank you all for your posts and I’m truly sorry if I have alarmed anyone! I was on the same medication when I was working 3yrs ago apart from, Tramadol which replaced Pregablin and I didn’t have any problem renewing my licence then so am not sure why this time? I’m going to see my doctor next week, I wish I’d done that before filling in the forms and would certainly advise anyone to do so if their licence is up for renewal.

I’m really lucky that I don’t rely on a car for work now as unfortunately I was deemed medically unfit for work 2 yrs ago and my husband, who is my carer, does most of the driving but I still like to drive occaisionally so I can feel ‘normal’.

I wish you all well, take care