Narcolepsy and driving

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Narcolepsy may not stop you drivingYou may still be able to drive

Many people with narcolepsy are able to drive. However, narcolepsy is a condition that may affect your ability to drive safely, and you will be permitted to drive only if DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency - the organisation that licenses cars and drivers for driving on public roads in the UK) is satisfied that your condition is controlled well enough that allowing you to drive will not cause an unacceptable risk to you and to other people.

Inform DVLA

If you drive and are diagnosed with narcolepsy, or if you are applying for your first driving licence, it is essential that you inform DVLA of your condition, so that they can make the necessary investigations and can reach an informed decision on whether to permit you to drive.

Medical assessment

Once you have notified DVLA of your condition, they make investigations that enable them to decide whether you may continue to drive. This might involve contacting your doctor or consultant, arranging for you to be examined and/or asking you to take a driving assessment.

Fixed-term licences

If the outcome is that you are granted a driving licence, it will most likely be valid only for a short, fixed period – 1, 2 or 3 years – with a review at the end of that period. DVLA may decide after several years of good control that you may then be issued with a normal licence, valid to the age of 70.

Learn more

For more information, please download our Narcolepsy Need-to-Know guide: Narcolepsy and driving.