Vasculitis UK


Hi all.

I haven't driven or operated any sort of machinery like sewing machine for example since diagnosed 4 months ago and quite frankly scared to do so..not sure what of to be truthful....can anyone if they've had similar experience or how soon after started to drive again.

I'm.worried..something may happen because of the cocktail of.drugs were all on?

Diagnosed 4 months ago with GPA formerly WG.

Had a letter my license and am not sure if vasculitis does affect being able .to drive or not?


12 Replies

Hi, While I was on chemo I did not go out. I only started driving little distances at a time towards the end of my treatment. It takes time to build you your confidence again. However as my GP said. " the aim is to enjoy as normal life as your condition will allow."

I was not told that any of the medicines I am on effect driving. Nor does it say that on the warnings that come with them. So check yours and see what they say.

Good luck


Hi, I initially had a year off driving after losing my license but I had Cerebral Vasculitis with significant neurological involvment. Also when I regained my license I chose to have an automatic car which has been fantastic as I cant co-ordinate sufficiently to drive a manual car anymore? I dont know how your vasculitis affects you but it does take time to bulid up the confidence again but if you take your time I am sure it will all come back?

I still have times where I have off days and may chose to take public transport but I live in a small village so driving essential fo rme?

All the best and just take it slowly, it will come back?



Hi, like Jann I was told the drugs don't affect your ability to drive, but I suppose it depends on how the vasculitis has affected you and your co-ordination. In my case it was a psychological thing and a fear of the illness thing. You don't feel well enough to drive, you feel fragile and you are afraid that you might not be able to handle it. Well, that's how I felt.

In my case I had great difficulty with my legs/muscles and didn't have the strength or the co-ordination to deal with the clutch, gears, handbrake etc etc. My car sat in the garage for nine months. So I changed it, got an automatic, and it was one of the best moves I've ever made. Not a cheap remedy but it worked for me.

Before I started driving again I mentioned to my insurance company about the illness and drugs and they were fine.



Cerebral vasculitis in particular affects driving ability, and I know quite a few people with that diagnosis who have had their licenses removed by DVLA because of this. That's because cerebral vasculitis is neurological, and causes strokes and brain damage, which can result in huge difficulties controlling arms and legs, and visual problems, and difficulties concentrating.

I stopped driving almost completely circa 1996, aged just 23/24, as I had quite a few near accidents. I wasn't diagnosed properly then. Once I was diagnosed DVLA then forbade me from driving, while more tests were done. Then once they were done I was allowed to drive again, but still felt too dangerous. I hung on to my license - more for ID than anything else - having to renew it every couple of years, until recently, when it was removed completely. And as far as I'm concerned, since my form of the disease is quite progressive, I don't think I'll ever be driving anything other than dodgem cars again. I am lucky my husband can drive.

You need to declare your diagnosis to DVLA and the insurance company, otherwise your insurance may be invalid. DVLA will make enquiries with your GP and consultant. I think they'll probably be happy for you to drive.


The drugs used in treating vasculitis and in general terms, the disease itself, are not a bar to driving or operating machinery. There are obvious exceptions where there is any hint of neurological damage or impairment, as Viv has said above. Certain physical impairment such as foot drop or loss of sensation in hands or feet might raise concerns as clearly would any impairment of vision. It's self evident that whether you are 100% healhy or have vasculitis, you should not drive if you do not feel well, feel fatigued or otherwise less than totally aware of what is going on around you and less than in total control of your body.

If you are taking powerful painkillers, sedatives, anti-depressants or relaxants like amitryptilline, then you should most definitely seek professional advice. If you have any doubts at all about driving, talk to your GP and/or consultant.


Hi. I was diagnosed with WS in April 2011. When I informed the DVLA of my conditions, they simply contacted my GP who agreed, along with my consultant, that there is no reason for my not being able to drive. After passing my doctors report to their own medical advisers, they're satisfied I can drive. It's a lot of hassle dealing with the paper-work but if you really want to return to driving, it's better to play safe then sorry and inform the DVLA. Mind you, it did take time for me to re-gain my confidence in driving. Hope this helps.


Living in a rural area with very poor, and expensive, public transport I drove the day after I got home from hospital after being diagnosed with WG/GPA. I also drove myself to and from hospital when having Cyclophosamide, on the way home I would stop off and do enough shopping to get me through the next few days.

After a short while I discovered that I could return to work as a taxi driver with no problems and that as long as I had a morning appointment for CTX infusion I could work for about four hours then go shopping before the CTX kicked in and made me feel terrible.

The only thing I have found is I do not tolerate oncoming headlights as well now as I did pre-WG/GPA. So now I am a daytime taxi driver instead of a night driver (which is a pity because I used to prefer driving at night because there are less people driving and getting in my way - I was a white van driver so I do know I own the road in front of me!).



Before diagnosis and because of the pain/discomfort I didn't feel safe to drive. Once diagnosed with CSS and hospitalised it induced a stroke. Left hospital after 5 weeks and unable to drive so had to inform DVLA who sent forms to complete, which required contact details of consultant/GP for their comment. Took 9 months to be able to drive and DVLA needed confirmation from consultant/GP that I was fit to do so before re-issuing my driving licence.



I posted a similar query on a motorcycle forum a few weeks back. This is the response I had from the DVLA, as posted on the site:

"I sent this email to the DVLA yesterday, and got the following reply back today:


I've recently been discharged from hospital following a successful kidney transplant. This was caused by an underlying form of Vasculitis, known as Wegener's Granulomatosis, or GPA. The illness is currently in remission.

As it is a rare illness, it is not listed on your website.

Before the recent operation, my GP and consultant had cleared me to ride my motorcycle, and have stated that once my recovery is over, they would have no problem doing the same again.

Could you please advise me on whether I need to do anything else other than be declared medically fit to ride by my doctors?

Thanks, Ryan


Thank you for your email received on 22/5/13. Your email reference number is 1320348.

I can confirm that if you are a car/motorcycle licence holder you are not required to declare this condition and to follow the advice of your doctor.

However if you are a lorry/bus licence holder you will need to inform the DVLA by following the procedure in our previous email.

So, as I'm just on my bike, I don't need to do anything, and can just get cleared by my doctors as before. My insurance is due for renewal before I'll be back on the bike, so I'll double check with them at renewal time"


Thanks that was handy to know.

I received the letter other day to renew but I can't find my paper part to post off...and was kind of thinking just leaving it as...but just to be on the safe side perhaps I should do the same as you and just email.em....

I feel more scared and anxious than anything. And I would be smart to get an automatic now and not drive when I'm having a bad day.


I only stopped driving for 6 week but most of that time I was to ill or in hospital but I drove home from hospital and was driving most of the time and was back out in the rally car after 3 month but that was only that long as I had lung issues that stopped me but I have done some steering modifications to make it easier but the MSA have a list of band medications and substances and they are a lot stricter on Heath than the dvla are, but I need my licence for my job anyway


But should say I never informed the dvla as felt there was no need as its not on there site and I carnt loose my licence :/


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