A physical test is usually performed by the health care provider or the PCP (Primary care provider) to check an individual’s overall health. This examination is also known as the wellness check. An individual does not need to be ill to request an exam.

During physical exam, an individual can ask about his health and any unusual changes related to it.

During the physical examination, the consultant can perform various tests according to an individual’s age, family, and medical history. Moreover,  he can recommend additional testing based on the individual’s condition.

Purpose of Physical Exam

The primary purpose of physical exam is to determine the individual’s health status. Moreover,  it can lead an individual to discuss the health concerns that he might have been experiencing.

A physical examination is advised at least once a year, especially in people over 50. The physical exams are used to;

  • Check the diseases to treat then in the early stages.
  • Update necessary vaccination.
  • Identify any health problems that can lead to particular medical concerns in the future.
  • Build a healthy relationship with the primary care provider.

Furthermore, such tests are excellent for checking blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels.

Dot Physical Exam (DOT)

A dot physical exam, also known as the department of transportation that is needed for people who drive commercial vehicles. The purpose of conducting a DOT physical examination is to determine whether the drivers are mentally, physically, and emotionally fit.

Who needs a DOT physical examination?

  • Individuals who drive vehicles that carry more than fifteen people require a DOT exam.
  • If an individual carries harmful material in his vehicle, he needs his vehicle to have a placard.
  • Individual who is paid to drive a vehicle designed to carry more than eight people.
  • Individual who drives a vehicle with a gross combination weight of over ten thousand pounds.

What does a DOT physical exam include?

The primary care provider or the health care advisor asks about the medical background of an individual who has;

  • Experienced any surgery in the past.
  • Taking any medicines.
  • Experienced any health problems.
  • Uses alcohol, tobacco, or any illegal substances.
  • Ever been dependent on any illicit substances.
  • Failed a drug test.

Immigration Physical Exam

The immigration examination is a portion of the medical test planned to confirm that the individual has no physical or medical history that could make him prohibited from the United States. It is a mandatory section of the immigration process that must be conducted by state-authorized doctors known as civil surgeons or panel physicians.

If an individual is planning to apply for a green card from within the United States, then the individual must have to visit a civil surgeon who is USCIS and a state-authorized doctor. Furthermore, suppose an individual is applying for a green card outside the United States. In that case, the individual is required to search for a panel physician in their home country authorized by the United States Department for the immigration examination.

Medical Exam Checklist

The health care advisor would check the individual’s blood pressure, blood sugar level, weight, and other basic requirements. Moreover, the physical examination includes examining an individual’s eyes, throat, nose, ears, heart, extremities, lungs, skin, abdomen, and external genitalia. The doctors would also verify particular vaccines such as polio, Covid-19, mesial, hepatitis B, and other vaccines required by the USCIS.

The healthcare advisor or the civil surgeon would ask a question about the medical  history of an individual, such as;

  • If he has been hospitalized for a mental or physical condition.
  • If an individual got hospitalized or encountered any significant event in his health background.

The doctor will examine the regular drug usage. Suppose an individual has experienced drug abuse, even if this information is not mentioned in the individual medical records. In such a case, he must consult with an immigration attorney before attending the immigration medical exam.

Where to get a Physical Exam?

The regular physical exam is conducted in the healthcare advisor’s office or clinic. However, when an individual applies for a green card, he would have to visit a civil surgeon authorized by the USCIS officials.


  • https://citizenpath.com/immigration-medical-exam/#:~:text=Typically%2C%20the%20physical%20exam%20includes,ray%20and%20blood%20test%20requirement
  • https://www.cdc.gov/immigrantrefugeehealth/about/medical-exam-faqs.html
  • https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/what-is-dot-physical#:~:text=A%20Department%20of%20Transportation%20(DOT,%2C%20mentally%2C%20and%20emotionally%20fit
  • https://physiciansimmediatecare.com/services/physicals/dot-physicals/ 
  • https://www.healthline.com/health/physical-examination
  • https://my.uscis.gov/findadoctor