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Drug Test Accuracy

| Nov 27, 2012 | Uncategorized |

A toxicology test is often used by potential employers to determine whether or not an individual has been under the influence of an illegal drug.

The test is typically performed by taking a saliva or urine sample. Blood tests can also be used, but they require more effort and are more intrusive to the subject. Toxicology tests range in use from searching for one specific drug to screening for as many as 30 different drugs at a time.

They are particularly important because so much can depend on their results-getting hired or fired, being accused of steroid use in athletic contests, and diagnoses of medical conditions, to name a few.

Indeed, they may become even more important in Texas, depending on the success of a bill introduced in the Texas Legislature designed to make receipt of aid from the Texas Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program conditional upon a clean drug test.

But how accurate are they?

Toxicology tests are generally pretty reliable. But there are a few factors that may lead to inaccuracies:

  • Mistaken drug identity. Some medicines taken to relieve coughing which don’t contain narcotics are sometimes labeled as narcotics in the test results.
  • Blood in the urine. This condition can lead to misleading toxicology results.
  • Consuming certain types of food. For example, a larger than normal intake of food containing poppy seeds can result in an inaccurate drug reading.
  • An insufficiently large urine sample.

Despite being used so widely, drug tests may yield inaccurate results-false negatives or false positives-when these factors are at play.

If you have been charged with a drug crime, you need an attorney. Before you agree to a drug test, contact the Kyle Law Firmimmediately. Our experienced San Marcos drug charges attorneys will give you the representation you need.

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